I started to blog at my community college that I attended before transferring to New Paltz. I remember feeling uncomfortable about other students reading my writings and I just hated the idea of blogging each week. After a couple of weeks I felt fine about it and I actually enjoy blogging. I have blogged in many of my English classes here at New Paltz, including this Shakespeare class, and I find that blogging is better than just doing homework. From reading other student’s ideas and different perspectives about the plays, themes and characters it has made it easier and more accessible to grasp a better understanding of the plays.
After looking back and reading my blogs I noticed that I picked a theme or strategy that Shakespeare repeats throughout his plays. My first blog focused on the way Shakespeare takes advantage of the idea of opposites and the way he incorporates opposition into his characters. From the beginning of the play I found it very interesting because of the portrayal of a relaxed and understanding Duke (of Athens), Theseus. Although he wasn't seen too much in the play, he seemed to stand out to me. I like the fact that we can see parallels in each play that we read by Shakespeare, and I usually try to find a common theme or motif that I can relate to all the plays. In my second blog I wrote about the way Shakespeare changes the identity of his characters. The characters are given dual identities so that manipulation and deceit can occur. In both “The Twelfth Night,” “Much Ado About Nothing” and “Othello” we see the theme of hiding ones identity, pretending to be someone else, and lying in order to get what one wants. In all of Shakespeare’s plays the idea of an illusion and seeing something that is not true is seen throughout. My third blog focused on yet another character who pretends to be someone he is not through manipulation and acting. In “Richard III” Shakespeare creates an untrustworthy character who gets what he wants through manipulation and by instilling fear in others.
When we begin reading a play I can’t help but try to pick out the similarities I see in the past plays we have encountered. I believe that my blogs are strong but can be stronger. As we move into the next plays in this course, I’d like to keep finding parallels within Shakespeare’s plays and maybe focus more on the women and their roles in these plays. As I look back at my blogs I realize that I need to focus on the organization of my thoughts and writing. I feel that sometimes I know what I’m trying to convey, but sometimes have a difficult time explaining.