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Learn Shakespeare with online courses and programs

William Shakespeare is considered one of the greatest English playwrights, with works that have been adapted into films, television shows, and musicals. Learn more about Shakespeare with online courses delivered through edX.

Who is Shakespeare?

William Shakespeare was an English playwright, poet, and actor who lived during the late 16th and early 17th centuries. Shakespeare's works encompass a vast range of genres, including tragedy, comedy, and history, and his plays have been performed and studied around the world for over 400 years. Shakespeare's most famous works include plays like "Romeo and Juliet," "Hamlet," "Macbeth," and "A Midsummer Night's Dream." His plays are renowned for their complex characters, poetic language, and exploration of universal themes such as love, power, and the human condition.

Beyond his plays, Shakespeare is also known for his sonnets, a collection of poems that explore themes of love, beauty, and mortality. His works continue to be studied, performed, and celebrated for their enduring relevance, insight into the human experience, and mastery of language. 

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Shakespeare course curriculum

If you are interested in learning about Shakespeare, you may be able to study the playwright and his works as part of a specialized class or educational program. Learners who study theater arts or literature, for example, may expect to examine his works during their broader curriculum. These lessons may focus on the cultural significance of his plays, the different interpretations of his work, and the response to some of his most enduring pieces of art in different time periods and in different parts of the world. Learn how to understand and appreciate Shakespeare’s language and explore how the emotional resonance of his works make them relevant to contemporary society.

Are you ready to start learning? Explore the range of educational opportunities offered through edX that allow you to learn about literature, the arts, and much more. Sign up for an accelerated boot camp or enroll in a full degree program and start working toward a bachelor's degree or (for more advanced learners) a master’s degree in a relevant subject. You can also explore executive education programs specifically designed for busy professionals.

Why is it important to learn Shakespeare?

Shakespeare's enduring legacy in the arts and his influence on literature and the English language make him a prominent subject of study. Familiarity with Shakespeare's works is valuable in fields like literature, theater, education, and cultural studies, potentially leading to career opportunities in teaching, research, writing, acting, directing, and arts administration. Some of the professional benefits of learning about Shakespeare include:  

  • Enhanced language and communication skills, as Shakespeare's works are renowned for their rich vocabulary and complex syntax. 

  • Improved critical thinking and analysis, as his plays delve into profound themes and intricate characterizations. 

  • Maximized creativity, as his works expose individuals to imaginative storytelling and innovative literary techniques. 

  • Increased understanding of the historical and literary foundations of Western culture, as Shakespeare’s works have influenced centuries of writers and artists.

Build these skills and more with edX. Leverage the power of online education to start learning about Shakespeare today. 

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