Wednesday, April 22, 2015

A.P. Literature Is Offstage: April 22, 2015

Focus: What does it mean to be offstage?

1. Warming up: Close reading a passage from yesterday

PLAYER: We keep to our usual stuff, more or less, only inside out.  We do on stage the things that are supposed to happen off.  Which is a kind of integrity, if you look on every exit being an entrance somewhere else.  (28)

  • In your lives, how would you define living "offstage" to living "onstage"?  In other words, when are you are offstage, and when are you onstage? For example, is your school life offstage or onstage, and why? Is there such a thing as "offstage"?
  • What is the player revealing about his acting troop's intentions?  Why is there integrity in this?
  • What does he mean when he says that every exit is entrance somewhere else?
  • How is this an example of metatheatre?  In other words, how is this a play about plays/theatre?

2. Enjoying the rest of Act 1 in R & G, the film version (start at 18ish minutes) with the same focus as yesterday:
  • Where do you see elements of Absurdism/Existentialism?
  • Which objects seem to serve as metaphors? What larger ideas do they stand for and how?
  • What connections to Waiting for Godot are you noticing?

3. Wrapping up by breaking down today's focus question in small groups:
  • How are Rosencrantz's and Guildenstern's onstage lives (when they're in Hamlet) different from their offstage lives?
  • Is being onstage more or less authentic than being offstage? Where do they have a greater sense of purpose? Where do they have more power?

Culminating essay due this Monday.

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