The Shakespeare Conference: SHK 9.0129 Wednesday, 11 February 1998.
From: Bernice W. Kliman <
Date: Tuesday, 10 Feb 1998 21:35:02 -0500
Subject: MLA Teaching *Hamlet* Questionnaire
[Editor's Note: Please send responses directly to Bernice W. Kliman at
Re: Approaches to Teaching Hamlet, ed. Bernice W. Kliman.
For the above volume in their Approaches to Teaching series, MLA has
sent questionnaires to about 250 randomly selected members who indicated
Shakespeare as one of their interests. For those who received that
notice, or for others who would like to write about teaching Hamlet, I
am appending the questionnaire so that you can download it, respond to
it, and send it via the Internet. Respondents are acknowledged in the
text. Please include your resume if you would like to write an essay for
the collection. In addition to the volume's overview (developed from the
answers to the questionnaire) and the essays (selected from among those
proposed), I hope to include a section called "short takes"-brief
descriptions of techniques and strategies that work.
I look forward to hearing from you.
Questionnaire for Approaches to Teaching HAMLET
Name _______________ Department _______________
School ______________ Address __________________
Phone(s) _____________ Fax ______________________
Please feel free to use as much space for your response as you need,
keying your answers to the questions below. I would be most grateful to
receive supplementary materials (course descriptions, syllabi,
bibliographies, and study materials, including assignments. In the
published volume, I will acknowledge all respondents. Thank you.
Please describe the course(s) in which you teach Hamlet. Please indicate
the level of the course (high school, including grade level;
undergraduate, general survey, upper division; graduate; or mixed).
Indicate the time you allot to this play (number of sessions or hours or
percentage of total course time). Is there anything about your
particular institution or teaching assignments that makes teaching
1. In your teaching of Hamlet, do you relate parts (or all) to other
Shakespeare plays? If so, identify them and describe the relationships.
2. Do you relate Hamlet to works by writers/ artists other than
Shakespeare? Describe the relationships.
3. For Hamlet, which editions, anthologies, textbooks, or books do you
in the classroom and why? Which editions do you use for your own study
why? Do you incorporate textual studies in your teaching? How?
4. Which reference works and critical works would you recommend to
teachers of this play? What are the indispensable texts for the
teacher's library? Why?
5. Which reference or critical works do you recommend (or assign) to
6. What sorts of assignments (classroom, group, written, oral, library
or Internet research) do you require your students to complete in this
play? Have any proven particularly successful? unsuccessful? How do you
design assignments to avoid plagiarism and to give students
opportunities for learning independently.
7. What is the relation, if any, between your own scholarly work and
8. What features of Hamlet do your students find most engaging or
stimulating? most difficult or challenging? How do you meet and exploit
9. What do you consider the most important features of Hamlet for your
students to understand? Have recent changes in the make-up of your
clientele affected your pedagogy? How?
10. How do you deal with such matters as rhetorical tropes,
versification and language overall?
11. Which critical approaches or theoretical issues have you found most
helpful or stimulating in teaching the play? Please indicate why you
find them helpful.
12. Do you incorporate performance in your teaching of Hamlet? How so?
13. Do you integrate the following into your teaching on Hamlet: (1)
Q1, Q2, or F1 facsimiles; (2) Renaissance cultural studies; (3)
twentieth-century cultural studies; (4) Aristotelian and other analyses
of tragedy; (5) New Criticism; (6) Old or New Historicism, including
source studies; (7) gender studies; (8) queer studies; (9) Marxist or
studies; (10) psychoanalytic; (10) other. If so, please specify and
describe how you use these in teaching.
14. Identify audio-visual materials (especially video) useful in
teaching Hamlet. Do you use illustrations? audio recordings? What is
your source of material (1) private library, (2) school or public
library, (3) other. What amount of class time do you use for
audio-visual materials? Do you use CD-ROMs or other technologically
sophisticated materials? How to you use any or all of these materials?
15. Do you make use of e-mail, the Internet, or other electronic
technology in your teaching? Describe.
16. Are there any other issues in teaching Hamlet you would like to
address? Please do so.
If you would be interested in contributing an essay to the proposed
volume, please indicate what your topic might be, your theoretical or
critical orientation, and a clear statement about how you would make
your topic immediately useful to teachers. Please include a current
Please return by 30 April 1998 to Bernice W. Kliman, 70 Glen Cove
Drive, Glen Head, NY 11545 or via e-mail to klimanb40sunynassau.edu.
Bernice W. Kliman
70 Glen Cove Drive
Glen Head, NY 11545