Key Stage 5

# Title Description Contributor
1 Antony and Cleopatra

What kind of tragedy is this play, with its two central figures rather than a singular hero? The...

Emma Smith
2 The Tempest

That the character of Prospero is a Shakespearean self-portrait is a common reading of The...

Emma Smith
3 Why should we study Johnson?

Professor Ros Ballaster of Mansfield College, Oxford, discusses her current research and...

Ros Ballaster, Sarah Wilkin
4 As You Like It

Asking 'what happens in As You Like It', this lecture considers the play's...

Emma Smith
5 Measure for Measure

The third Approaching Shakespeare lecture, on Measure for Measure, focuses on the vexed question...

Emma Smith
6 Why should we study Shakespeare?

Dr Emma Smith of Hertford College, Oxford, discusses her current research and proposes why we...

Emma Smith, Ilana Lassman
7 King John

At the heart of King John is the death of his rival Arthur: this fifteenth lecture in the...

Emma Smith
8 Why should we study Chaucer?

Dr Laura Ashe of Worcester College, Oxford, discusses her current research and proposes why we...

Laura Ashe, Ilana Lassman
9 Richard III

In this thirteenth lecture in the Approaching Shakespeare series the focus is on the...

Emma Smith
10 Why should we study medieval romance?

Dr Nicholas Perkins of St Hugh's College, Oxford, discusses his current research and...

Nicholas Perkins, Sarah Wilkin
11 A Midsummer Night's Dream

This lecture on A Midsummer Night's Dream uses modern and early modern understandings of...

Emma Smith
12 Othello

Othello - First in Emma Smith's Approaching Shakespeare lecture series; looking at the...

Emma Smith
13 King Lear

Showing how generations of critics - and Shakespeare himself - have rewritten the ending of King...

Emma Smith
14 Titus Andronicus

Focusing in detail on one particular scene, and on critical responses to it, this sixth...

Emma Smith
15 Why should we study Dickens?

Dr Robert Douglas-Fairhurst of Magdalen College, Oxford, discusses his current research and...

Robert Douglas-Fairhurst, Ilana Lassman
16 Taming of the Shrew

Emma Smith uses evidence of early reception and from more recent productions to discuss the...

Emma Smith
17 A Discussion of Emily Dickinson's 'I started early, took my dog'.

Dr Sally Bayley presents an illuminating reading of Emily Dickinson's 'I started early...

Sally Bayley
18 Why should we study Elizabethan Theatre?

Professor Tiffany Stern of University College, Oxford, discusses her current research and...

Tiffany Stern, Ilana Lassman
19 The Comedy of Errors

Lecture 12 in the Approaching Shakespeare series asks how seriously we can take the farcical...

Emma Smith
20 The Merchant of Venice

This lecture on The Merchant of Venice discusses the ways the play's personal relationships...

Emma Smith
21 Why should we study Postcolonial Literature?

Professor Elleke Boehmer of Wolfson College, Oxford, discusses her current research and proposes...

Elleke Boehmer, Sarah Wilkin
22 Much Ado About Nothing

Emma Smith asks why the characters are so quick to believe the self-proclaimed villain Don John...

Emma Smith
23 Twelfth Night

The seventh Approaching Shakespeare lecture takes a minor character in Twelfth Night - Antonio...

Emma Smith
24 The Winter's Tale

How we can make sense of a play that veers from tragedy to comedy and stretches credulity in its...

Emma Smith
25 Henry V

The second lecture in the Approaching Shakespeare series looks at King Henry V, and asks whether...

Emma Smith
26 Macbeth

In this fourth Approaching Shakespeare lecture the question is one of agency: who or what makes...

Emma Smith
27 Richard II

Lecture eight in the Approaching Shakespeare series asks the question that structures Richard II...

Emma Smith
28 Hamlet

The fact that father and son share the same name in Hamlet is used to investigate the play'...

Emma Smith
# Title Description Contributor
1 Are traditional texts always what they seem? Great Expectations pt2 (lecture)

Video lecture by Simon Swift, University of Leeds and discussion board.

In this second...

Simon Swift
2 Post-Colonial Criticism (lecture)

Part of the OpenYale course 'Introduction to Theory of Literature'. Available as audio, video...

Paul Fry
3 Shakespeare and the Stage

Professor Tiffany Stern gives a talk on William Shakespeare and how his plays were performed in...

Tiffany Stern
4 Chaucer

Professor Daniel Wakelin discusses the work of Chaucer and explains how he was one of the first...

Daniel Wakelin
5 The concept of 'literariness' or 'the literary' pt1

Dr Katie Mullan and Professor Francis O'Gorman (University of Leeds) discuss the notion of the...

Katie Mullan, Francis O'Gorman
6 The concept of 'literariness' or 'the literary' pt2

Dr Katie Mullan and Professor Francis O'Gorman (University of Leeds) discuss the notion of the...

Katie Mullan, Francis O'Gorman
7 How words, form and structure create meaning: Women and writing (pt1)

Video podcast and discussion forum. By Simon Swift, University of Leeds.

Simon Swift
8 How words, form and structure create meaning: Women and writing (pt2)

Video podcast and discussion board.
Simon Swift, University of Leeds

Simon Swift
9 Are traditional texts always what they seem? Great Expectations pt1 (lecture)

Video lecture by Simon Swift, University of Leeds and discussion board.

Simon Swift
# Essay Title Description Contributor
1 The Anonymous Jane Austen

Jane Austen (1775-1817) is one of the most famous authors in the western cannon (possibly helped...

Kate O'Connor