Sean Walker A Midsummer Night's Dream
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A Midsummer Nights Dream (Source)

A Midsummer Nights Dream (Source) | Sean Walker A Midsummer Night's Dream | Scoop.it

Theseus and his use throughout "A Midsummer Night's Dream".

Sean Walker's insight:

The Book of Theseus alone has enough information for Shakespeare to leave alone. Shakespeare, however, took the Book of Theseus and slightly altered the story told in it to fit his ideal character in "A Midsummer Night's Dream". Shakespeare used Theseus as the leader. He was the one who took charge in the first scene and remained calm while doing it. The Mythological version of Theseus had the same nature, but was much more of a fighter, and although it was never actually stated, it was assumed the Hippolyta and him did not have the best of relationships after he kidnapped her from the Amazons and forced her to marry him. The overall use of Theseus allowed for there to be a character who was able to take charge and yet because it was mythology, the audience was informed of his previous life relieving Shakespeare of having to add a backstory.

 

Cottrell, Alan. "The Book of Theseus." Masterplots, Fourth Edition. N.p.: Salem, 2010. 1-4. Web. 15 Dec. 2014. 

 

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Animaniacs - A Midsummer Night's Dream (Video)

Sean Walker's insight:

Video: This video of Animaniacs depicts the final scene of A Midsummer Nights Dream. This video does a great job of translating the old Shakespearean play into a modern day understanding. It includes modern day figures such as Oprah and Batman and Robin. It really helps any reader into understanding the meaning of the play. This clip demonstrates how the language has changed through the years because the character has to explain what each part means. 

 

"Animaniacs - A Midsummer Nights Dream." YouTube. YouTube, n.d. Web. 15 Dec. 2014.

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A Midsummer Night's Dream (Image)

A Midsummer Night's Dream (Image) | Sean Walker A Midsummer Night's Dream | Scoop.it
Sean Walker's insight:

Image: This picture shows Oberon and Titania talking to each other. I chose this because it's interesting that Oberon has a black suit and cape, while Titania has a full white dress. This shows that they are opposites, yet they are in love with each other. This photo alone can show different interpretations of the play. The black and bulky outfit of Oberon shows not only his personality, having an arrogant nature, but also his adamance, which is seen multiple times during the play, such as his desire for the changeling child. Titania, on the other hand, also has a bulky outfit, but it is white. This emphasizes on Titania's adamance as well, but her white dress shows that she is more peaceful in her acts. Throughout the play she feels obligated to take care of the child, while Oberon wants to use him as a soldier. The overall idea of adamance in the both of them, shows how because of this similarity, they begin to push themselves away from each other, and the only thing that was able to save them from millenia of fighting was the use of magic.

 

"A Midsummer Night's Dream, 2011." 2011 Photos of A Midsummer Night's Dream at the Utah Shakespeare Festival. N.p., n.d. Web. 15 Dec. 2014.

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Theseus -A Midsummer Night's Dream (Historical Article)

Theseus -A Midsummer Night's Dream (Historical Article) | Sean Walker A Midsummer Night's Dream | Scoop.it

The story of Theseus in terms of Greek Mythology

 

Sean Walker's insight:

Theseus, a boy borned by King Aegeus and Aethra, was considered the "Hero of Athens". Aegeus placed a sword and pair of sandals underneath a rock before he left, also informing Aethra that when Theseus is able to pick up the rock, that he is to go to Athens. On the way, Theseus saved villages from "various monsters and villains" and eventually met up to Aegeus, who noticed him from the sandals and sword. Theseus from then on went on many adventures, the most famous being Theseus and the Minotaur, in which he volunteered to go into the labyrinth to take on the mystical beast known as the Minotaur. With the assistance of Ariadne, who gave him a ball of string to get back from the labyrinth, he was able to defeat the Minotaur and escape the labyrinth. He later on went to the Amazon and captured who is known in "A Midsummer Night's Dream" as Hippolyta.

 

"Theseus." Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia, 6th Edition. N.p.: Columbia UP, 2013. 1. Web. 15 Dec. 2014. 

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Literary Criticism: Economies of Desire in A Midsummer Night's Dream

Literary Criticism: Economies of Desire in A Midsummer Night's Dream | Sean Walker A Midsummer Night's Dream | Scoop.it

A criticism exaggerating on the odd motifs used in the play.

 

Sean Walker's insight:

After reading "Economies of Desire in A Midsummer Night's Dream" by Bruce Boehrer, I came away with a different view of the way that Shakespeare had formed the play. The play has an interesting way of using recurrent themes to get comedy and romance across to the audience. "Shakespeare's comedy does refer to bestiality so frequently that these references may be regarded as a motif unto themselves and therefore considered worthy of collective study." This is seen multiple times, but primarily with the use of Bottom, the Weaver and Titania, the queen of fairies. Boehrer later refers to the sexual references used through the use of animals, "I am your spaniel, and, Demetrius, / The more you beat me I will fawn on you. / Use me but as your spaniel." Not only does this emphasize the use of Beastiality to enhance comedy, but it is also used at a romantic way, which is shown as the play moves on, she begins to fawn over Demetrius more and more, most certainly upholding her promise. Boehrer changes topics and heads towards the use of same-sex relations, which is seen many times through out the play as well. Boehrer emphasizes on the use of juxtaposition, (putting two objects close together for enhanced comparison or contrast,) in Shakespeare's work. In Boehrer's criticism, he referred to Louis Adrian Montrose, and said, "For Montrose, Hippolyta's status as queen of the Amazons associates her with 'the inversionary claims of matriarchy, sorority, and female autonomy,'and these principles, in turn, are forcefully repudiated by the conjunction of 'Amazonomachy and marriage' embodied in the queen's betrothal to Theseus." This is only one of the examples and it is referred to in the first twenty lines. I came across this article with the intention in my mind to find something that I might have never picked up on otherwise. I found what I was looking for and was surprised of how much I did find. This article also showed how Shakespeare used specific mythology in his play to impact the comedy of it. By using Theseus and Hippolyta, he was able to show the contrast between the two by placing them right next to eachother.

 

Boehrer, Bruce. "Economies of Desire in A Midsummer Night's Dream."Shakespeare Studies. Vol. 32. N.p.: Rosemont & Printing Corporation, 2004. 99-117. Web. 15 Dec. 2014. 

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