Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Hamlet Paper Preparation

Due Thursday, February 26th

Draft of Hamlet paper due – 3 copies: Due Monday, March 3

For your Hamlet paper, I encourage you to think small. The examination of a single speech may provide enough material for your 5-6 page paper. What does the speech reveal about the characters? The situation? The themes of the play? How do the poetic devices used in the speech enhance the meaning? You’ll probably want to steer away from the speeches we’ve covered intensively in class, unless you’re confident you can add something new to what we’ve already discovered. Alternatively, you may develop your own question about the play. For Thursday, bring some evidence that you’ve done some thinking about what your paper will be about and that you’ve reread some of the relevant sections.

In a short paragraph, identify the topic/question/idea you hope to pursue, and then do two of the three items below. (You may substitute an activity of your own design of equal effort for one of the items below:

  1. List and briefly annotate the scenes (including Act/Scene/Line numbers) that you think are most relevant to your idea or question.
  2. Write a careful analysis of a passage (15-30 lines): Download the lines, translate them into clear, modern English, and write your analysis. In your analysis, you will explain the context of the lines within the play (when and where they occur), the significance of the context (who is listening, who might be listening, the speakers’ goals, etc.), the significance of the lines to your topic, the significance of particular words, and the like.
  3. A substantial log entry in which you discuss your topic and how you might develop it. You can type this up and print it out rather than writing it in your log.