Film and other media adaptations present a powerful artistic, philosophical, political, interpretative tool, to broaden or to focus our experience of a given text. In this course, we will examine adaptations of Shakespeare plays on a global, multicultural, and broad historical scale, emphasizing problems of representations of race, sexuality, and power, both in terms of “authoritative” and experimental adaptations.

Taking into account a rich history of performance, we will explore Shakespeare plays across film and other media forms, both old and new, with an emphasis on cultural and political context. In addition to film adaptations of plays such as Hamlet, King Lear, The Tempest, Coriolanus, and Othello, we will also turn to online hypertext and interactive projects to pose the question of how far a viewer may be implicated in the reception of a given adaptation.