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Copy of Julius Caesar - Pre-Reading

An introduction to the historical Julius Caesar and to Shakespearean drama

Maggie OShea

on 5 January 2016

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Transcript of Copy of Julius Caesar - Pre-Reading

Men in general are quick
to believe that which
they wish to be true.

"Julius Caesar"
The Life and Times of Julius Caesar
Watch the film. and answer the 13 questions on the worksheet.
Major Subjects of JC
The Mob
The Roman people play a pivotal role in the play.
Who in the play is truly a honorable man?
The Art of Persuasion
Persuasion is used frequently in the play.
As you read, be sure to consider these subjects as you read. We will revisit these subjects and develop possible themes around each subject.
Shakespearean Tragedy
A tragedy is a play where a series of actions leads to the downfall of the tragic hero, a character who starts at a good place but eventually loses out, usually in death.
Tragedy and the Tragic Hero
In this tragedy, Romeo and Juliet are well-to-do teenagers from rival families. They fall in love, but tragic events lead to their untimely deaths.
Romeo and Juliet
Tragic Heroes
Romeo and Juliet
Prince Hamlet learns that his father was killed by Hamlet's uncle, who is now the king. Hamlet plots revenge, eventually killing the king, but he and others sadly lose their lives in the process.
Tragic Hero
By the way, the tragic hero isn't necessarily a "hero" by our standards. A tragic "hero" may not be a Superman-esque character.
Macbeth is a nobleman who is persuaded by his wife to kill the king of Scotland and take over the country. He does so, but his guilt and the king's son eventually lead to Macbeth's death.
Tragic Hero
Who will be the tragic hero in the play Julius Caesar?
Traits of a tragic hero
possess importance or high rank
exhibit extraordinary talents
display a tragic flaw - an error in judgment that leads to downfall
faces downfall with courage and dignity.
A soliloquy is when a character is alone on stage and speaks aloud his or her thoughts. This allows the audience to know the character's thoughts and intentions.
Romeo: "What light through yonder window breaks? It is the east, and Juliet is the sun!"
Our star-crossed lover is telling us he sees Juliet, and begins to profess his love for her. This soliloquy is followed by one from Juliet, who argues that their last names shouldn't keep them apart
Juliet: What's in a name? That
which we call a rose would
smell just as sweet.
Romeo and Juliet
Hamlet: "To be, or not to be; that is the question."
This is the beginning of arguably the most famous soliloquy, as Hamlet ponders about life and death, and whether it is worthwhile to live a life of pain and stress or to give up and die.
Macbeth: Is this a dagger which I see before me, the handle towards my hand? Come, let me clutch thee.
In this soliloquy, Macbeth is contemplating whether or not to kill Duncan. The imaginary dagger symbolizes the decision that he must make.
Pay attention to when characters are alone and speaking!
For a soliloquy to work, the character must be alone on stage, and while it may appear he or she is talking to the audience, the character is really just thinking aloud.
Many famous quotes come from soliloquies.
Dramatic irony is when the audience or viewer knows something that the character(s) do not.
Dramatic Irony
There are different types of irony - situational,verbal and dramatic -
for this unit, stay focused on dramatic irony.
Can you identify the dramatic irony going on in this clip?
It's ironic because the audience knows that Juliet isn't dead when she drinks from the vile; although Romeo believes she is dead.
Can you consider our knowledge of history an example of dramatic irony, since we know right away that Caesar will die in this play?
All the world's a stage,
and all the men and women merely players:
they have their exits and their entrances;
and one man in his time plays many parts,
his acts being seven ages.
Preview of Act 1
Now onto to Act 1!
Full transcript