Digital Shakespeare Webtexts

Purpose

In this assignment, you will create your own digital “edition” of King Lear to gain first hand experience with ways collaboration and technology shape the texts we read. In addition to learning how to “think like a textual editor,” this project also invites you to close read the scene you chose through current trends in King Lear scholarship and performance studies. Since King Lear is a famous example of a problem text, i.e. the play’s two extant editions vary widely, it shows how textual scholars, editors, literary critics, directors, audiences, and print technologies collaborate to produce the texts we read.


Projected Learning Outcomes

Performing a revision, reflection, and projection exercise will meet the following learning outcomes: analysis, literacy, persuasion, and imagination. The project will give you the opportunity to demonstrate your fluency in key concepts in Shakespeare and environmental theory; multimodal writing skills; and project how work you published in the course can redress problems conceptual and rhetorical problems you raise throughout your site.

Tools

Wordpress pages/posts; plug-ins; widgets; and categories.

Instructions

Reflective Essay: Write a 1,000-1,200 word essay to be published to your About page. The essay needs to include the following:
  • The first section needs to introduce the site and yourself to users. Develop by answering the following: What is the overall goal or central theme that holds the whole site together? What problems in Shakespeare did you uncover, and how did you address those problems?
  • In the second section, reflect on and describe the knowledge/skills you used to accomplish the different assignments. How was writing for one setting different than writing for another? Did writing in different modes help you to develop one or two key concepts or skills? How did writing in the different modes allow you to address problems in Shakespeare in ways only one mode might not have?
  • In the final section, speculate on what knowledge and skills gained in the course may transfer to future course work. For instance, how might moving from argument driven analysis to visual rendering and then back again apply to solving problems in STEM fields? How can you use Shakespeare as a conceptual frame to think (and solve) contemporary problems? How does Shakespeare help us imagine new futures now?
Site Revision: Beyond the introductory essay, you need to revise your pages/posts into a cohesive, user friendly whole by doing some of the following:
  • Develop user interest on static pages by including images, pull quotes, linking to relevant interest. You may even want to include video or audio where relevant.
  • Develop your site with new header and background images or colors.
  • Make sure your navigation is easy to use, which may mean giving your static pages more succinct names.
  • Develop static page sidebars with widgits, links, and tags

Audience
As always your peers and I are your primary audience, yet please also keep an ever expanding, global Internet audience in mind for the site. What style, tone, and vocabulary choices will you have to make to suit both the audience, and the subject matter for each project? Explain quotations and images do so as if your audience has never read the texts you discuss; determine the most effect ration between audio, verbal, and visual text; and make best choice for overall ease of use.

Assessment
  • Is the reflection essay and site in general organized around a clearly articulated theme, goal, claim?
  • Does the designe support the content?
  • Does author clearly articulate skills/content gained over the course of the semester?
  • Are all required pages/posts present?
  • Does the site provide new insights into Shakespeare, the environment, or writing with new media?
  • Was final version ready on or before Dec 11 at 5:00?