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Shakespeare's Beasts

educational • Shakespeare • animals • historical
  • Artist Talk
  • YouTube
  • Free

William Shakespeare wrote of lions, shrews, horned toads, curs, mastiffs, and hellhounds. But the word "animal" itself appears very rarely in his work. In her 2013 book "The Accommodated Animal", Northwestern University professor Laurie Shannon explores why. Shakespeare's plays were steeped in a classical scientific tradition and anchored in a reading of Genesis that placed animals alongside humans in a larger vision of belonging. Guiding us through Shakespeare's menagerie, Shannon provides a glimpse into the long history of how we talk about animals.

  • Duration
    1 hour 6 minutes

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