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Introduction to Who Wrote Shakespeare, University of London

67 個評分
42 個審閱


This free course from the University of London explores critical thinking, and the interpretation of texts, through the Shakespeare authorship question. Using doubt about Shakespeare’s authorship as our playground, we will explore the key concept of authorship attribution, while developing skills in literary analysis, interpretation, and argument. Through forensic exploration of key texts, you will learn why Shakespeare’s authorship is questioned, and what evidence is cited on both sides of the debate. For those of you interested in exploring the works of Shakespeare from a new angle, or just wanting to hone your analytical thinking skills, this course offers an introduction to a fascinating area of interest. Those of you already interested in the Shakespeare authorship question will be encouraged to question your own assumptions in fruitful ways. Whether undertaken as a standalone course, or as preparation for the University of London BA in English, this course will be food for thought....


創建者 JQ

Feb 21, 2018

Great Course with many interesting and innovative concepts. Thanks to all the folks who must have worked hard and long to put this course on the internet. Dr Quincy

創建者 FM

Mar 20, 2018

Fascinating subject. The content of this course is offered no where else. The course is well organized and presented with enthusiasm by Dr. Barber


40 個審閱

創建者 Katrina Dixon

Oct 26, 2018

This was a fantastic course by Dr Ros Barber that was academically rigorous and exceedingly well-balanced, with plenty of extra material including incisive and incredibly detailed video interviews with Peter Dawkins, Mark Rylance, Professor William Leahy, Alexander Waugh and others. As someone who'd previously only been able to pursue research on this subject independently, including primary and secondary text sources, and even YouTube videos about the authorship question (including the excellent Shakespeare Authorship Trust SAT conference videos), being able to study this in an academic context gave me the assurance of what I already knew as well as, crucially, significantly expanding and deepening that knowledge. I feel it's absolutely crucial that many more people are able to learn from this course and discover this amazing subject. Exploring the issues of authorship can only enrich our knowledge of the plays, the period and the author, and has immediate relevance for our current times as well in so many areas. I also hope that there is the possibility of following up this introduction with further courses exploring the many illuminating academic strands of research that continue into the authorship question. Sincere thanks to Dr Barber and everyone who contributed to an excellent course.

創建者 Jose Manuel Romarís Cercós

Sep 16, 2018

Brilliant, really interesting and very professional course about Shakespeare (and Shakspere). Thanks to Ros Barber, Goldsmith College and the University of London for offering it. I always wanted to base my PhD on this topic (PhD that I hope I can make some day) but after finishing this course I am even more interested. Thank you.

創建者 kamaljeet singh sangha

Jul 12, 2018

knowledge is the power ,enjoyed this course .something totally different .

創建者 Joy Smith

Jun 10, 2018

Lots of detailed info about the evidence for and against.

創建者 Walnea CEOLIN

May 08, 2018

the issues are really interesting and well explained and supported and developed.

創建者 James Alexander

May 06, 2018

extremely fair and very thorough on the narrow (and surprising) question of whether there is enough evidence to say that Shakspere (ie William S of Stratford) wrote the Shakespeare plays - would welcome more material/new course on internal evidence from the plays and/or the sonnets, as hinted at the end of the course

創建者 Catherine Scheib

May 06, 2018

It started great, but seemed to drag by the midpoint. By the end I had to force myself to finish.

創建者 Mike

Apr 29, 2018

Beginning with a lecture on Confirmation Bias was a brave way to start this course. Attributing the reasons behind people's enthusiasms to confirmation bias and cognitive dissonance is a comfortable way for contrarians to convince themselves that outrageous contradictions of accepted scholarship and buccaneering interpretations of the historical record are not intrinsically ridiculous.

In the 1990s, a group of mathematicians made a small fortune (they were caught early) by betting on the odds of a Hole in One in major golf tournaments. Unwary bookmakers would offer 500:1 or even 1000:1 when the actual odds were close to evens.A hole in one seemed much more unlikely than it actually was from thousands of tees shots played by hundreds of the best golfers in the world. Fans of the Authorship question try the same trick. Over and over and over. Only without the solid mathematical support. Each time a new tidbit appears—Weever's epigram, Sogliardo's identity, New Place malt stocks, Hampton Court as Avon, the Droueshout sleeves, suggestive numerology, the apparent solution of abstruse codes— articles are written about the "discovery" and websites filled with comment, support and argument. Yet amongst all the encyclopaedias of hopeful assertion, there is still no hard evidence supporting any alternative candidate. If there were, it would certainly have appeared in a four week attempt to legitimise doubt over Shakespeare's authorship—but check back. There is none. Nothing.There is no point in assessing the strength of the case for Shakespeare based on these materials. Dr Barber did not invite anyone to make it and could not have delivered a more feeble effort to make it herself. Items of evidence for Shakespeare are either challenged by the presentation of suggestive minutiae (rather than examined in their context) or waved away as part of a conspiracy to confuse and conceal the truth from everyone not possessed of the true eye for suggestive detail. Improbably, this includes almost everyone who studies and writes about Shakespeare (or ever has). Confirmation bias at work is the implication.Attributing significance to the insignificant is the business of the anti-Shakespearean. Arranging collections of suggestive nuggets in curiosity-inducing albums is the Art of the Doubter. "Oh look!" cries Barber, "I've found another Marian Hacket. Doubt!!" Then "Another Thomas Russell! Doubt!" and "a Warwickshire word in use in Newcastle! Doubt!". The doubt discussed in this MOOC is entirely created by of the tutors, who foster it with selective misinterpretation of the historical record, false parallelisms, wildly imaginative interpretations of contemporary references, and serious abuse of probability theory, all of which you will find in Dr Barber's modules.

The activity doesn't damage the case for Shakespeare.

In examining anti-Shakespearean method using this type of doubter methodology, the learning opportunities on this course lie entirely in the study of how irrational people think.

創建者 Mark Jackson

Apr 18, 2018

Two stars because I'm generous, and I'm no expert. I think there should be more indications of the time that some material was first mooted - e.g. so and so said this in, say, 1889 and then an indication that research has moved on since (or. tell the student where it hasn't). i think the course should start with the incumbent and then chip away from there. With this method, I feel there would be the sense of a journey rather than a feeling of scatter gun.

創建者 Sandra Sparks

Apr 18, 2018

I would like to see Dr.Barber give a course in her fields of expertise, poetry and fictional literature, not in historical fields she doesn't understand. Historical research is a meticulous regimen. In pursuing the Shakespeare Authorship Question, Dr. Barber not only bypassed the history of the original authorship questions, she completely repeated the first questioners' mistakes, and continues down the paths of old dried-up ideas that lead nowhere. There have been legitimate and truly possible answers to the SAQ over the past century, developed by professional historical research. Co-authors of Shakespeare's plays, both definitely identified and quite possible, have been named. In this course these real possibilities are ignored in favor of unsubstantiated romances with the rich and famous. The SAQ arguments today aren't debatable arguments at all - they are complaints which can be summed up in these few words: "We are not being taken seriously." Dr. Barber's course has proven, once again, there is a good reason for that lack of acceptance. The only thing I received from this course was conversation with a very few participants who know how to ask questions and not insist that their favorite answers be the right ones. That was refreshing. But the course itself was stale, useless, and nothing I can recommend to anyone. Not even those who really, really want their favorite answers to the questions to be true. They've already been through all this before.