Why are we still talking about Macbeth more than four centuries after it was penned? Shakespeare's "Scottish Play" is such a notorious look at humanity's propensity for evil that it has its own set of superstitions and lore, and people can’t get enough of it.
Though Shakespeare is often described as universal, in 2021 he can still be very challenging for people of all ages.
Was Macbeth a villain or a hero? Did he actually exist? Separate fact from fiction as you go through the rise and destruction of Macbeth with expert Sean Bienert.
Students who complete this 3-session class will have a better understanding of the play's central themes and historical context; and be able to decode some of the more opaque dialogue and references making it more comprehensible, interesting, and perhaps relatable.
The Language and Times of Shakespeare and Act I: This class will introduce the historical context in which Macbeth was written. Why is language so important when it comes to this play? How did James VI suddenly become James I, and what does that have to do with understanding Shakespeare? Finally, as the play opens, what pieces are on the proverbial game board and what are their aims?
Acts II and III: The game is afoot! What do Macbeth's soliloquies say about his frame of mind? Why is Lady Macbeth so angry all of the time? Can Macbeth still "win" at this point - and what would that look like? What mistakes has he made, and why has he made them?
Acts IV and V: In Macbeth's final audience with the witches, what is he forgetting? What is being said with the fate of Lady Macbeth, and what might audiences from the time period have known about despair? Lastly, when the curtain comes down, what do we still not know? What holes are there in this much revered and reviled piece of literary history?
Author of several short stories, including "Perfect Weather for a Baby's Funeral", Sean Bienert has been teaching the Bard since 2006.
Bienert is a graduate from the honors program at the University of Iowa and winner of the 2007 "Best Teacher of the Year Award" for his school and has worked with a diverse group of students from varying backgrounds, abilities, and cultures throughout his career. He has taught in several countries across Asia as well and continues to empower students with the tools they need to deconstruct and digest complex thematic elements from literature and, therefore, life.
All of our workshops are held over Zoom.
You will receive an email 30 minutes before the workshop begins with the link to join the Zoom meeting. We highly recommend you to create a Zoom account prior to class.
If you do not see the Zoom link in your inbox 30 minutes before the workshop, PLEASE CHECK YOUR SPAM / JUNK MAIL!
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