Thursday, June 03, 2010

Shakespeare's Julius Caesar

Julius Caesar, William Shakespeare
(Oxford School Shakespeare Series), pb., 160 pp.
Ages 12+

As another part of our study of literature and history around ancient Rome, my boys and I read this edition of Julius Caesar. Of course it is as much interpretation as history, but it was useful to discuss Shakespeare’s interpretation and his view of human nature.
The reading was challenging but this edition has very helpful annotations in the side margins explaining archaic phrases. The use of language, humor and powerful rhetoric were very worthwhile. I did not realize how much Shakespeare liked puns! Then the portraits of uninhibited pride (Caesar) and torn conscience (Brutus) were also striking and sources of good conversation.
I heartily commend this edition.

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