Week 9 – on campus: George Eliot Middlemarch & Shakespeare’s Antony and Cleopatra

This week second years began exploring the world of George Eliot. Middlemarch is the number one novel on the list of the top 100. Can you begin to see why this is so?

Here are some Blog topics that you can try out for week 9:

1. Explore the Victorian Web and create a mini-guide on where to find the best information on Middlemarch. This could be a wonderful help to your whole group, even the whole class.

2. Try writing a description of one of the people you know well (family member, friend, colleague…) in the style of George Eliot.  This will challenge you to look closely at what the elements of her style are. I look forward to seeing some results. This exercise can give you a deep insight into Eliot’s writing practice.

In third year Antony and Cleopatra was our focus. This play provides again an insight into Shakespeare’s complex value system. What did he feel was more worthy: the stoic, regulated, honest world of the Romans? or the dissolute, but emotionally animating world of Egypt? We had the same questions when reading and viewing Henry IV: Is Falstaff ultimately treated shamefully by the new King? Or does Falstaff deserve the treatment he gets at the end?

Here are some blog topics for Shakespeareans:

1. Explore the Folger Shakespeare resources on Antony and Cleopatra. Prepare a mini-resource kit on this play using Folger and/or any other academically reliable source materials

2. Give your own reasons as to why you think this story (Antony and Cleopatra) continues to be of such interest in our own times?

3. You are either Antony in Rome, or Cleopatra in Egypt. Chose one role and write a love letter to your beloved (Antony or Cleo) saying why you miss (him or her) so much and what you plan to do when you meet again. Explain the difficulties you are having in your present surroundings without your partner.


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