Shakespeare's Julius Caesar

Ref: C3670297

Four hundred and one years after the death of Shakespeare, we will read and explore one of his most famous plays. No previous experience of reading Shakespeare required. Suitable for everyone.

Course aim

To help people understand the themes, idea and plot of Shakespeare's "Julius Caesar" and to enhance a viewing of the live screening of this play on April 26th 2017, if students want this. There will be no expectation that students have to see the live screening, this is optional. Dates of course: 05.04.17 12.04.17 and 10.05.17. The live screening at Cleethorpes and Whitgift cinemas will be on 26.04.17.

Who is the course for?

What topics will this course cover

We will look at major scenes and ideas, and examine the language used and its themes. We will try to answer the question as to why it has been seen as one of he greatest political plays of all time. There will be a chance to read parts, or act, but only if students want this. They are also welcome to just listen. We will make the themes of the play relevant to all the WEA themes and to our lives, including modern day politics.

What will it be like?

WEA classes are friendly and supportive. You will be encouraged to work together with your fellow students and tutor. You will be asked to share your ideas and views in the class and work with the group to give and accept feedback in a supportive environment. The WEA tutor will use a range of different teaching and learning methods and encourage you to be actively involved in your learning. You may be asked to undertake work to support your course outside of your class.

By the end of the course I should be able to:

Understand the plot and the main themes and ideas. Be able to analyse some of the language used e.g. in some of the more famous sections and appreciate how language has changed. To be able to relate the ideas to issues in our own lives and in society e.g. political questions, the tension between public and private lives, the nature of integrity and ambition, to name just a few. To be able to develop self-study skills between sessions so as to enhance independent learning. Understand more about the role of theatre in our lives and approach Shakespeare live screenings with more confidence and understanding, or theatre generally

How will I know I'm making progress?

Feedback from peers and tutor. Self-assessment

What else do I need to know, do or bring?

An Arden edition copy of the play from the library will be available for loan. But you may have a favourite copy you want to bring as well. Bring any other resources you think may be useful.

Reading and information sources

If you can look at the play beforehand, this will be a help. Don't be put off by the language which may appear difficult if you have not read older English before. You could collect the play from the library in advance if you want- just let the organiser know.

What could the course lead to?

Further Shakespeare study, acting in a play, talking about Shakespeare with family, colleagues and friends, understanding the relevance and genius of Shakespeare, more study.

Download full course outline

Shakespeare's Julius Caesar Course Outline


You can if you meet all of the following requirements:

  • are paying the standard fee or are on any of the qualifying benefits
  • are paying with a credit/debit card or are not paying a fee because of a qualifying benefit
  • have a valid email address
  • have been resident in the UK, EU or EEA for the last 3 years
  • are aged 19 years or older on 1st September 2016
  • have read and accept the standard terms and conditions
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