links & resources
Academic Integrity Policy*
Academic Resources*
Grade / Point system*
All my classes
wcu english

English 631: Shakespeare

Thursday 6-9 pm in Coulter 203




  • A complete works. Suggested:

    Greenblatt, Stephen, et al. The Norton Shakespeare, Based on the Oxford Edition. 2nd Edition. W.W. Norton 2008. (best)


    Another complete works, such as the Riverside or a recent Bevington edition (Longman), Pelican (Orgel and Braunmuller), or the Arden Shakespeare.

  • Bickley, Pamela and Jenny Stevens: Essential Shakespeare: The Arden Guide to Text and Interpretation.


  • Regular readings and discussion. Note that while I have not accorded any points to this part, which is the basic, daily work of the course, I reserve the right to subtract points from the total if for some reason you fail to do it. It's a small class, so we need everyone participating every week.
  • 20%: Two oral presentations on one or two articles on a theoretical, critical, or historical topic: This presentation should be accompanied by an outline of each article, accompanied by quotes or examples. Your goal is to make your audience feel like they've read the material. Please send me a digital copy of the presentation the day before class.
  • 50% Abstract and Conference paper: You will submit an abtract for the graduate research conference by February 18 (at midnight) which you will then develop into an eight-page conference paper (not counting works cited) due March 31 (for the conference). You should use a theoretical approach to read Shakespeare. Extra credit if the paper gets accepted.
  • 20% Final exam. If you prefer, you can instead submit a second paper: EITHER
    • bibliographical essay about a issue relevant to Shakespeare's plays (for example boy actors, apprenticeship, animals, diet, fashion, a political event or issue -- war in Ireland, union of England and Scotland, obcenity act of 1607 -- props, proverb lore, suicide, performance, pollution and ecology, etc.)
    • or a second conference-length paper on another play
    • or a reworking of the first conference paper into a full-length (16-20 page) research paper


Attendance Policy

This class meets once a week, so I would like you to confne yourself to one missed class. More than than could significantly affect your grade.

Digital Incivility

You may use an ebook reader in my class, but please don't use a computer, phone, or laptop for anything else. Turn your phones off and put them away (not in your lap or on your desk). If I discover that you're on Facebook, email, texting, browsing, or using any digital resources except for our textbook, I will mark you absent and ask you to leave.

If you need to use a computer to take notes or if you have a disability that requires the use of certain tools, please let me know in advance.

I reserve the right to check your computer's screen to make sure you're following my policy. If you put it away when I try to look at it, I will assume you are breaking my rules and will mark you absent and ask you to leave.


Dr. Mary Adams, instructor
last updated 14-jan-16