Shakespeare and the History of Ideas (TRU1100)

30 credits

This module considers the history of Western literary criticism through a focus on the contexts for and reception of the works of Shakespeare. It explains how critics have approached Shakespeare's poems and plays, and why, examining the intellectual and cultural influences on the practice of criticism before, during and after the Renaissance period, from the eighteenth century to the present day. Attention is given to Romantic, Victorian, Modernist and contemporary approaches to the study of literature: Weeks 1-5 deal with the philosophical and critical background to Shakespeare’s works, while Weeks 7-11 focus on the subsequent critical reception of these texts.