This lesson sensitizes students to the similarities and differences between cultures by comparing Shakespearean and Bunraku/Kabuki dramas. The focus of this comparison is the complex nature of revenge explored in The Tragedy of Hamlet, Prince of Denmark and Chushingura, or the Treasury of the Loyal Retainers.
Study Shakespeare's Hamlet in the context of Elizabethan attitudes toward revenge. The lesson includes activities in which students compare the text of Hamlet to the interpretations of several modern filmmakers.
By means of group performances, writing exercises, and online search activities, students learn about the sometimes dangerous and destructive powers of language, particularly when wielded by such an eloquent and unscrupulous character as Shakespeare's Iago.
After encountering visually stunning examples of Anglo-Saxon manuscripts and engaging with the literary conventions of Anglo-Saxon poetry, students will be prepared to study Beowulf. Dispelling stereotypes about the so-called “dark ages,” this lesson helps students learn about the production of early manuscripts and the conventions of Anglo-Saxon poetry, solve online riddles, and write riddles of their own.