Journal on your experiences reading Shakespeare

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  • Journal on your experiences reading Shakespeare.


  • The actual date of Shakespeare's birth is not known, but, traditionally, April 23 has been Shakespeare's accepted birthday.


  • A house on Henley Street in Stratford, England, owned by William's father, John, is accepted as Shakespeare's birth place.


  • Shakespeare was a first-rate actor. He then became actor-manager and part-owner in the Blackfriars and afterwards the Globe Theatres.


  • Shakespeare is widely regarded as the greatest writer in the English language and the world's preeminent dramatist. His surviving works consist of 38 plays, 154 sonnets, two long narrative poems, and several other poems.


  • Shakespeare’s plays have been translated into every major living language, and they are performed more often than those of any other playwright.

ACTIVITY # 1: Before Caesar/ After Caesar In the before column, List every thing you know about Shakespeare and the play, The Tragedy of Julius Caesar

  • Before
  • After

Early Rome

  • Rome was established in 753 B.C.
  • For 200 years ruled by Tarquin kings who were tyrants
  • The Tarquins were overthrown by Lucius Junius Brutus in 510 B.C. – an ancestor of Brutus in the play.
  • A democratic republic was then established which lasted until the death of Julius Caesar.
  • The Romans were very proud of their democratic system and were repulsed by the thought of being ruled by a king.
  • Triumvirate means three men and refers to a type of coalition government. It was formed of three men Julius Caesar, Crassus and Pompey who needed each other to get what they wanted.
  • When Cassus died, Caesar defeated Pompey.

What Got Caesar into Trouble? (Continued)

  • Many Romans assumed that Caesar was ready to declare himself King of Rome and eliminate the five hundred year old republic of which the Romans were so proud.
  • Remember the Tarquins, the tyrant kings who ruled over Rome for 243 years? There was no way Romans were going to return to that style of government. Someone had to put a stop to this pursuit of absolute power, and so enter the conspirators.
  • ...Beware the Ides of March!

The Tragedy of Julius Caesar

  • play, in five acts, about several men trying to save the Roman Republic from Caesar’s ambition of having complete control.
  • Before Caesar, Rome was a Republic
    • = equal citizenship and people could elect tribunes to represent them in tribunals = like congress and the senate!

Play Versus The History

  • Therefore, there is much historically accurate information, but a story to entertain the audience must also unfold.
  • Yes! There is much to learn from the works of William Shakespeare.
  • As we study this play, remember Shakespeare wished not only to inform his audience about the history of Julius Caesar but also to entertain them.

Julius Caesar

  • Julius Caesar's bloody assassination on March 15, 44 B.C., forever marked March 15, or the Ides of March, as a day of infamy.

Political Assassination

  • Lincoln
  • Kennedy
  • Elected in 1860
  • Elected in 1960
  • Concerned with civil rights
  • Lost a son while president
  • Lost a son while President
  • Lincoln
  • Kennedy
  • His successor was a Democratic senator from the south named Andrew Johnson, born in 1808.
  • His successor was a Democratic senator from the South named Lyndon Johnson, born in 1908.
  • Lincoln’s Secretary, whose name was Kennedy, advised him not to go to the theatre.
  • Kennedy’s secretary, whose name was Lincoln, advised him not to go to Dallas.
  • He was shot in the back of the head in the presence of his wife.
  • He was shot in the back of the head in the presence of his wife.
  • Lincoln
  • Kennedy
  • Assassin John Wilkes Booth was born in the South in 1839.
  • Assassin Lee Harvey Oswald was born in the south in 1939.
  • Booth shot Lincoln in a theatre and ran to a warehouse.
  • Oswald shot Kennedy from a warehouse and ran to a theatre.
  • His assassin was shot before going to trial.
  • His assassin was shot before going to trial.

Shakespeare and The Tragedy of Julius Caesar

  • “Let me have men about me that are fat,
  • Sleek headed men, and such as sleep 0’nites;
  • Yond Cassius has a lean and hungry look;
  • He thinks too much; such men are dangerous”
  • -Julius Caesar

Wow! 1485-1625=Exciting Times!!!

  • Shakespeare lived and wrote in =Elizabethan Era

Elizabethan Era:

  • The height of the Renaissance under Queen Elizabeth


  • One of the hottest political issues in Elizabethan England was the role of the monarch and what loyalty should be owed him or her. Hmmm? Sound familiar?

During this time…

  • Renaissance=rebirth=15th &16th century Europe
  • Art, scholarship, and literature flourished
  • Reformation-King Henry VIII (Elizabeth’s dad) split from Pope and Catholic Church and founded Protestant Church of England
  • Age of Exploration-The Americas and more
  • Age of Discovery-many scientific discoveries including telescope and planetary motion

Heard of these guys? Other figures from the Renaissance

  • Copernicus
  • Galileo Galilei
  • Leonardo Da Vinci
  • Christopher Columbus
  • Hernán Cortés
  • Vasco da Gama
  • Ferdinand Magellan
  • Francisco Pizarro
  • Donatello
  • Michelangelo


  • What to look for:
  •  Persuasion: Technique used by speakers and writers to convince an audience to adopt a particular viewpoint. 


  • tragedy: a play in which events turn out disastrously for the main character or characters

Tragic Hero

  • a character whose basic goodness and superiority are marred by a tragic flaw
  • a fatal error in judgment that leads to the hero’s downfall.
  • Brutus-is noble, but is a poor judge of character-too rigid in his ethical and political principles
  • Caesar-brings great things to Rome, but proud, arrogant, and ambitious


  • Dialogue
  • Monologue
  • a conversation between characters.
  • a speech by one character in a play, story or poem. Given to another character.
  • Soliloquy
  • Aside
  • a long speech expressing the thoughts of a character alone on stage.
  • short speech delivered by an actor in a play, which expresses the character’s thoughts. Traditionally, the aside is directed to the audience and is presumed to be inaudible to the other actors.


  • Friendship vs Duty
  • Fate vs Free Will
  • Absolute Power


  • You have 2 minutes to write 5+ sentences in which you respond to the following.
  • A good friend of yours has been elected president of the student council. Soon, you notice that he or she is abusing the position by claiming privileges and using it to further his or her social life. How would you deal with this situation?

Friendship Constitution

  • Count off into groups
  • Each group list ten qualities or traits that qualify a person as a friend.
  • List five friend “infractions” that could end the friendship.
  • Elect a representative
  • Create a class Friendship Constitution
  • 4th – Loyal, Honest, Respectful, Supportive
  • 6th – Optimistic, Trustworthy, Respectful,
  • Intelligent, Straightforward
  • Sophomore Friendship Constitution
  • Respectful, Trustworthy, Supportive, Open Minded, Charismatic

Journal write

  • What is the role of personal friendships in creating a group governing structure?
  • How easy is it to maintain friendships in a political context?
  • Which is more important to you, friendship or personal principles?


  • Dramatic
  • Verbal
  • Irony of Situation

Verbal Irony

  • 11/08/17
  • English
  • Author says one thing and means something else.

Irony of Situation

  • 11/08/17
  • English
  • When what is expected does not occur.

Dramatic Irony

  • 11/08/17
  • English
  • Audience knows something that a character in the literature does not know.

What type of Irony is it?

  • Antony says Brutus is “an honorable man”

What type of Irony is it?

  • The audience knows about the plot to assassinate Caesar, but Caesar does not.
  • We watch Caesar go out on the Ides of March with suspense.


  • the art of effective or persuasive speaking or writing, especially the use of figures of speech and other compositional techniques.

Three Ways to Persuade -According to our good friend, Aristotle.

  • Ethos (credibility)
  • Pathos (emotion)
  • Logos (Logic)


  • Appeal based on the character of the speaker. An ethos-driven document relies on the reputation of the author.
    • Why should I trust you as a speaker? What makes you such an expert?


  • Appeal based on emotion. Advertisements tend to be pathos-driven.
    • How are you going to make me emotionally involved? Humor? Sadness? Fear?


  • Appeal based on logic or reason.
    • Statistics, Cause and effect, examples, quotes from experts


  • Address readers' concerns, counterclaims, biases, and expectations.
  • What might the opposition say, and how do you plan to counter attack?

Rhetorical Devices

  • Rhetoric: the art of speaking or writing effectively
    • the study of writing or speaking as a means of communication or persuasion; skill in the effective use of speech
  • Rhetorical devices: Using language to emphasize, explain, and unify ideas for a persuasive effect

Rhetorical Question-a statement that is formulated as a question but that is not supposed to be answered.

  • Rhetorical Question-a statement that is formulated as a question but that is not supposed to be answered.
    • Marriage is a wonderful institution, but who would want to live in an institution?
  • "Hath not a Jew eyes? Hath not a Jew hands, organs, dimensions, senses, affections, passions? If you prick us, do we not bleed, if you tickle us, do we not laugh? If you poison us, do we not die?
  • "Aren't you glad you use Dial? Don't you wish everybody did?"
  • Repetition- the reuse of the same words, or nearly identical terms, repeatedly for emphasis, in order to emphasize their importance.
    • “ I Have a Dream”-MLK
  • Anaphora – repitition of words
  • at the beginning of sentence.


  • The repetition of a word or phrase at the beginning of successive phrases, clauses or lines.
    • "We shall not flag or fail. We shall go on to the end. We shall fight in France, we shall fight on the seas and oceans, we shall fight with growing confidence and growing strength in the air, we shall defend our island, whatever the cost may be, we shall fight on the beaches, we shall fight on the landing grounds, we shall fight in the fields and in the streets, we shall fight in the hills. We shall never surrender."
    • (British Prime Minister Winston Churchill)


  • A comparison made between two things to show how they are alike.
  • Example: “Life is like a box of chocolates, you never know what you are going to get.”
  • Parallelism - The repeated use of phrases, clauses, or sentences that are similar in structure or meaning. Writers use this technique to emphasize important ideas, create rhythm, and make their writing more forceful and direct.


  • Repetition of a similar sentence structure to create emphasis
  • Example: This week the party was canceled – not because of a lack of interest, not because of a lack of money, and not because of a lack of volunteers.
    • “ I came, I saw, I conquered.” – Julius Ceaser
    • "You can fool all the people some of the time, and some of the people all the time, but you cannot fool all the people all the time." - Abraham Lincoln
    • "Ask not what your country can do for you; ask what you can do for your country." - John F. Kennedy
  • Faulty Parallelism Example
  • faulty parallelism:
  • She revels in chocolate, walking under the moonlight, and songs from the 1930s jazz period.
  • Better Parallelism
  • good parallelism: She revels in sweet chocolate eclairs, long moonlit walks, and classic jazz music.
  • "She revels in”
  • "sweet chocolate eclairs," [Adjective--Adjective--Object]
  • "long moonlit walks," [Adjective--Adjective--Object]
  • "and classic jazz music." [Adjective--Adjective--Object]
  • Even Better Parallelism
  • more good parallelism: She loves eating chocolate eclairs, taking moonlit walks, and singing classic jazz.
  • She revels in"
  • "eating chocolate eclairs" [Gerund--Adjective--Object of Gerund]
  • "taking moonlit walks" [Gerund--Adjective--Object of Gerund]
  • "and singing classic jazz." [Gerund--Adjective--Object of Gerund]
  • An allusion is a reference to a well-know person, place, event, literary work, or work of art.


  • To be or not to be…
  • In these six words Shakespeare gives us two complete opposites: existing and not existing.
  • Opposition, or contrast of ideas or words in a balanced or parallel construction
  • Many are called, but few are chosen.
  • “She’s so mean, but I love her anyway.”
  • “That class is great but I hate going.”
  • “I shouldn’t eat it, but I can’t stop!”
  • These all have antithetical elements in them. Each of these sentences are very dramatic. When you put the two antithetical thoughts together in such a short phrase, you get drama.
  • “I really enjoy our relationship together on occasion because we do fun things together such as swimming, shopping, watching movies and other things but you really have some habits that thoroughly annoy me at time as well and I’m conflicted with how I feel about you.” Where’s the drama there? How about “I love and hate you.” Whoa. NOW I want to know more about this relationship. DRAMA!


  • .
    • "Extremism in defense of liberty is no vice, moderation in the pursuit of justice is no virtue." (Barry Goldwater - Republican Candidate for President 1964)
    • "Not that I loved Caesar less, but that I loved Rome more". (Brutus in:  " Julius Caesar" by William Shakespeare)
  • J. Diction-word choice
  • Notice the change in tone:
  • “An odor filled the room.”
  • “A Stink filled the room.”

Diction: What words have a strong connotation (emotion)?

  • “our remonstrances have produced additional violence and insult; our supplications have been disregarded; and we have been spurned, with contempt, from the foot of the throne.”

What words have a strong connotation (emotion)?

  • “Our remonstrances have produced additional violence and insult; our supplications have been disregarded; and we have been spurned, with contempt, from the foot of the throne.”

Look and listen for the poetic devices…

  • Alliteration-repetition of consonants, usually at the beginning of words.
  • Whereat with blade, with bloody, bladeful blade, He bravely broached his bloody boiling breast.” Quince-Midsummer
  • Assonance-repetition of vowel sounds
  • “What lusty trumpet thus doth summon us?”-King John
  • Consonance-repetition of consonant sounds


  • Repetition of the initial consonant sounds beginning several words in sequence.
    • "....we shall not falter, we shall not fail."   (President G.W. Bush Address to Congress following 9-11-01 Terrorist Attacks.)
    • "Let us go forth to lead the land we love.“
    • (President J. F. Kennedy, Inaugural 1961)
    • "Veni, vidi, vici.“
    • (Julius Caesar  - “I came, I saw, I conquered”)


  • Repetition of the same vowel sounds in words close to each other.
    • "Thy kingdom come, thy will be done.“
    • (The Lord's Prayer)
    • “Its quick soft silver bell beating, beating…”
    • (Karl Shapiro, “Auto Wreck”)


  • Euphemism: substitution of an agreeable or at least non-offensive expression for one whose plainer meaning might be harsh or unpleasant.
  • Examples:   Euphemisms for " stupid" A few fries short of a Happy Meal. A few beers short of a six-pack. One Fruit Loop shy of a full bowl. All foam, no beer. The cheese slid off his cracker.
  • Guess the Persuasive Techniques used in the following slides
  • Emotional Appeal
  • Logical Appeal
  • Parallelism
  • Emotional Appeal
  • Ethical Appeal
  • Emotional Appeal
  • Analogy
  • Rhetorical Question
  • Ethical Appeal
  • Repetition
  • Analogy
  • Ethical Appeal
  • Parallelism
  • Logical Appeal
  • Repetition
  • Rhetorical Question
  • Parallelism
  • Analogy
  • Logical Appeal


  • In English Language, the order of words is important:
  • “The dog bit the boy. vs. “The boy bit the dog.”
  • Shakespeare rearranges words to create rhythm-it’s poetry!
  • Characters will have their own speech patterns- Romeo often speaks in couplets.
  • He often places verb before subject
  • Instead of “He Goes”=Goes He.
  • Instead of Does he go?=Go does he?

Activity 2: Translation

  • Write down 4 lines each of dialogue
  • Shakespearean pronouns:
    • Thou: Subject: Thou art my friend
    • Thee: Object: Come, let me hug thee
    • Thy: Possessive adj: Where is thy dog?
    • Thine: Possessive noun: To thine own self b tru
  • Verb inflection:
    • And an “est” or “st” to the verb for exaggerated inflection.
    • Where didst thou go?
    • Thou liest, he came alone.


  • Wrote plays in blank verse= unrhymed iambic pentameter-10 syllables-5 stressed beats
  • Shakespeare wordplay!
    • Pun-play on words that sound the same but have different meanings:
  • Ex. Kick your butt

Activity 3: Puns

Shakespeare’s Theatre

  • emphasis on language and the human voice
  • Shakespeare had to create atmosphere and setting through language. IMAGERY.
  • Shakespeare’s audience accepted the stage convention of heightened language, often in verse.
  • no-one spoke in verse outside the theatre.

Famous Quotes

  • Et tu, Brute?-Then Fall, Caesar.
  • Friends, Romans, countrymen, lend me your ears:
  • Yet Brutus says, he was ambitious, And Brutus is an honorable man.
  • Beware the Ides of March

Speech # 1 (minimum 300 words)

  • Although you are not a fan of Julius Caesar, you, (insert your name/profession here), are on your way to see the celebration of Caesar’s return. You come upon the others celebrating. Prepare a persuasive monologue addressed to the crowd to convince them why they should not be celebrating Julius Caesar.
  • Be sure to use appeals to ethos, pathos, and logos. Highlight the appeals in 3 different colors.

How you will be assessed

  • Gesturing and movement-1pt
  • Intonation (speech inflection)-1pt
  • Staying in Character and with platform 1pt
  • Content addresses topic-2 pt
  • Content reflects understanding of events in the play so far.-2pt
  • Total of 7 points per speech


  • 1 speaker
  • 1 senator


  • Everyone in group creates a character and writes a speech (minimum 30 words)
  • Elect 1 person only to give speech every week.
  • The whole group is responsible for the speech. (Everyone is responsible for giving the best speech)
  • The best speech each week earns 2 extra points.


  • Skim through the beginning of the play
  • Review your FYI notes.
  • Be creative.
  • Be persuasive.

Speech # 2- Due: Today/ Speech Given Thursday

  • Due to your increased popularity after having spoken at the “Hail Caesar” Rally, you have been asked to appear before the Senate on the Ides of March to present a bill of your creation suggesting what is the most important problem in Rome the Senate needs to address. You may or may not want to focus this bill on an area that you are directly affiliated with. You may supplement your speech with visuals.
  • Use 3 rhetorical strategies

Speech # 3

  • CAESAR IS DEAD! And you are popular. Whether you intended to or not the opportunity to seize power in Rome is upon you. A few well placed speeches coupled with a blistering ad campaign and you could be called Caesar in the near future. (cont on next page
  • Your first opportunity is to speak at the funeral of Caesar before Brutus or Marc Antony. Commiserate and sympathize with them. Tell the people of what you think about what has happened. Tell them what needs to happen now. Tell them who to watch out for. Tell them how you can provide them what they need. Tell them what you need to get their support.

Caesar Persuasive Essay Due TBD

  • See literature book pg 915 for all the details.
  • Assessed using the CAHSEE rubric for Persuasive Essays.
  • Choose a number (no name on essay)
  • MLA format
  • Standard WA 2.4
  • 200 points
  • 4=200 4-=195 3+=190 3=180 3-=170
  • Throughout the play, Brutus defends his reasons for killing Caesar. Antony just as eloquently states why Caesar should not have been killed. Write a position paper taking either Brutus’ or Antony’s part.

A score of 4

  • 4-states and maintains a position, authoritatively defends the position with precise and relevant evidence, and convincingly addresses the reader’s concerns, biases, and expectations.

Score of 3

  • States and maintains a position, generally defends that position with precise and relevant evidence, and addresses the reader’s concerns, biases, and expectations.

Score of 2

  • Defends a position with little evidence and may address the reader’s concerns, biases, and expectations.

Score of 1

  • Fails to defend a position with any evidence and fails to address the reader’s concerns, biases, and expetations

Julius Caesar

  • Brutus is one of the men who assassinate Caesar in the Senate.

Julius Caesar

  • Mark Antony is one of the Triumvirs (leaders) who rule Rome following Caesar's assassination.

Julius Caesar

  • Cassius is one of the original conspirators against Caesar.

Julius Caesar

  • Calphurnia is the wife of Caesar who begs him not to go to the Senate on "the ides of March."

Julius Caesar

  • Portia is the wife of Marcus Brutus who tries to learn from Brutus the assassination conspiracy he is hiding from her.

Famous Quotes

  • "Friends, Romans, countrymen, lend me your ears; I come to bury Caesar, not to praise him". Quote (Act III, Scene II).

Famous Quotes

  • "Et tu, Brute!" Quote (Act III, Scene I).

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