Friday, 25 January 2013

HAMLET

  




Imagine you are a young university student ... Imagine you love Philosophy and Poetry ... You've got friends as well as  a beautiful girl you start fancying about...But your happy ordinary world is suddenly turned upside down by the news of your father's death. You grieve and mourn but you can cope with it...What you really can't stand is ... your mother's behaviour...After just few weeks,  she gets married again, with your uncle, your father's brother...You find it unbearable but nobody else seems to notice that unacceptable exhibition of joy and love. Then something even worse happens: your father's ghost comes back from hell, reveals you the tragic truth of his death and orders you to avenge him! Your uncle Claudius has murdered him and now he is your mother's new husband!

What would you do? Would you respect your father's will? 

This is what happens in the first act of Shakespeare's "Hamlet", one of  the most popular tragedies of all times.

CHARLES DICKENS (1812 - 1870)

Dickens (1812 -1870) was a great prolific writer and entertainer who portrayed a vivid picture of Victorian England. He created a vast range of characters, especially eccentrics, vagabonds, criminals and orphans. In his own life Dickens was extraordinarily popular and he is still the best-known English novelist. He profoundly influenced many of his contemporaries and successors, even abroad (Dostoyevsky and Kafka for instance). Earlier critics tended to regard him as a great comic writer and entertainer, whose plots were implausible and whose characterization was superficial. Contemporary critics now tend to see his works - especially the later ones - as combining social realism with the poetical devices of metaphor and symbolism. These allowed him to explore the depths of the human psyche and to represent social conflict and evil.

If you want to know more about Charles Dickens, download 
the Power Point Presentation from the Widget_Box on the right. 

Tuesday, 15 January 2013

VOICES FROM THE FRONTLINE - FIGHTING FOR HUMAN RIGHTS

Front Line Defenders is the International Foundation for the protection of human rights defenders. They work to provide fast and effective action to help protect human rights defenders at risk so they can continue their work as key agents of social change.

Voices from the Front Line, performed on 9 December 2012 at 8 pm GMT, was a celebration of the courage and determination of human rights defenders around the world.  Voices from the Front Line was hosted by Martin Sheen and featured Andrea Corr, Robert Sheehan & Amy Huberman.


Video 1 . Robert Sheehan reads Liu Xiaobo


WORKSHEET FOR VIDEO 1

Wednesday, 9 January 2013

INTRODUCTION TO THE VICTORIAN AGE - POWER POINT PRESENTATION

Queen Victoria's family in 1846 by Franz Xaver Winterhalter
You can download the

 POWER POINT PRESENTATION,   THE VICTORIAN AGE
  (HISTORICAL/SOCIAL/CULTURAL BACKGROUND )
from the Flash_ Widget Box on the right sidebar (The Victorian Age 2011)


Wednesday, 2 January 2013

BEOWULF, GRENDEL AND THE DRAGON - NOTES AND ACTIVITIES BASED ON VIDEOS

The epic poem



The word “epic” come from the Greek noun ├ępos, which means “the poets’ oral exposition”. The two major epic poems in the Western tradition are The Iliad and The Odyssey, attributed to the Greek poet Homer. Later examples of epic poems are Virgil’s Aeneid and the Anglo-Saxon Beowulf.


  •  The main features of an epic poem are:
  •   Long narrative
  •   Elevated style
  •  Celebration of the deeds of a hero
  •  Presence of supernatural events and characters
  •   Description of an aristocratic, military society
  • Typical scenes: the banquet, the battle, the voyage, the funeral

Beowulf 



It is a poem of 3, 182 lines. It is the longest surviving poem in Old English, the name given to the language of the Anglo-Saxons. It is also the first important example of poetry in a European language that is not Latin or Greek.
There are a couple of references in Beowulf to historical events in Denmark from the 6th century, but almost all the poem is based on legends, not history.
The version of the poem we have now was probably composed between 700 and 750. It was composed in England, but the story takes place in Sweden and Denmark. This means the Anglo-Saxons went on telling traditional stories from the Germanic world even after they had invaded England.

Like other early poetry in other cultures, Beowulf was first transmitted orally, for centuries, before finally being written down. In Anglo-Saxon times only very few people could read or write, and there were very few books, which all had to be written by hand. Printing books in Europe was only invented in the 15th century.