Hamlet Lecture Week 4

Hello All, well this is the beginning of our totally on-line teaching for Shakespeare. And we begin with a short video (myself lecturing you from home) and from there we will turn to audio focussing more closely on the key sections of the play.

Introduction to Hamlet Week 4… Enjoy… and please listen to the audio that appears directly underneath this.
Here is the talk (audio version) that we had from one of the Bell Shakespeare Actors Matilda Ridgeway last Wednesday evening just before the performance. Enjoy! You can see a short video clip of Matilda right here! Last year she was pregnant but she played Portia in Shakespeare’s The Merchant of Venice despite her pregnancy!
So let’s now return to the play in some more detail. I am going to do some of this section as a video recording- the sound quality is better and I don’t have to spend so much time adjusting my hair!!
Commentary on Hamlet’s first soliloquy in Act 1 Scene 2, line 130ff.
Commentary on Hamlet’s prose depiction of the human condition in Act 2, Scene 2, line 278ff
Commentary on Hamlet’s “To Be or Not to Be” speech in Act 3, Scene 1, line 57 ff, followed by Ophelia’s lamentation at what has become of her one-time lover: Act 3, Scene 1, line 144 ff.
Hamlet’s tortuous self-accusation as he compares his own lack of action against that of the “heroic” actions of young Fortinbras and his army: Act 4, Scene 4, line 32ff.
Gertrude’s amazing depiction of the drowning of Ophelia in Act 4, Scene 7, line 166

Graphic translation of the power of Shakespeare’s imagery into this painting by the Pre-Raphaelite artist Millais.

Having worked through all these pieces, keep your ears and eyes open for what is happening in the tutorial this afternoon. There will be a discussion forum, but there will also be an experiment with Zoom to see how we can all link up with this interactive platform. See you then….. MG

Zoom tutorial for Week 4:


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