Shakespeare - Kevin O'Brien's Recorded Courses at Homeschool Connections



As You Like It is a comedy classic and one of Shakespeare’s most complex works.  It has a little bit of everything - romance, adventure, sophisticated humor, unsophisticated humor, rebellious teens, a love story and some of the most amazing poetry ever written.  In addition, Shakespeare confronts the big question: what is the meaning of life - and how can a teenage girl find it in a world that features domineering fathers, unfaithful suitors, and fools who are wiser than wise men?

Much Ado about Nothing is one of the classic comedies of Shakespeare.  It features the sparkling battle of wits between Beatrice and Benedick, two star-crossed lovers who act as if they can’t stand each other, but secretly are in love with each other!  The interplay between the humor of the main plot and the tragic elements of the sub-plot are fascinating, and bring out clearly one of the main themes of the play: how can irresponsible boys turn into mature young men?  This play also explores issues that are relevant to us today: specifically, how do we sort through the lies that people in society are telling us, in order to arrive at the truth? Portions of the play will be read aloud in class, with students taking part as characters if they wish.

Othello is one of Shakespeare’s most famous plays.  It not only deals with the great mystery of love and jealousy - but the question of manipulation, control and power.  In studying Othello we learn about the Machiavellian techniques of Iago that assail us even today in media and politics.  But we also learn the workings of the human heart - and how Othello’s great challenge is to learn to love, a task that confronts each of us, Christians in particular.

Here's a lecture of mine on Act Five of Othello ...