Grace Lecture (Canceled)

Thursday, March 12, 2020
4:30 PM - 6:00 PM (ET)
SMITH Rehm Lib
Event Type
Lecture - Speaker
Elise Saad
English Department

Today you can plunge into a videogame of Hamlet by playing Ophelia, who has a chance to avert the catastrophe. Or you can immerse yourself in 360-degree virtual reality production of that play, taking the position of the ghost of Hamlet’s father. What difference will such modes of performance make for our future understanding and performing of Shakespeare and early modern theater? This lecture will survey the range of current digital forms of Shakespearean texts and performances, including videogames, virtual staging, and cybernarratives, as well as the dissemination of Shakespeare through the internet and social media. It will consider to what extent such new technologies can enhance our engagement with Shakespeare’s plays, while also asking what then will be left of what we know as Shakespeare: what are the benefits and the risks of such transformations?


The School of Arts and Sciences Board of Overseers Emerita Professor of English at the University of Pennsylvania, Rebecca Bushnell is the author of books on subjects including Greek and Renaissance tragedy, early modern political thought, humanist pedagogy, early modern English gardening books, and most recently, time in drama, film, and videogames. Her forthcoming book is an anthology of writing about the natural world before 1700, but she is also working on a book on theater and videogames. She is a former President of the Shakespeare Association of America.

Categories: English

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