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Sleep and dreaming in Shakespearean Drama - 16thc Europe

Briefly and broadly examine the role of sleep and dreaming in Shakespearean literature, and sleeping as a social construct within 16th century Europe (the Elizabethan period)

Potentially using some material from Historian Roger Ekrichs book ‘ At Days Close: A History of the Night-time’ as it relates to the aforementioned.

  • Interesting premise. Hamlet's soliloquy easily comes to mind ("To sleep, perchance to dream..."). What other Shakespearean dramas deal with sleep and dreaming? – S.A. Takacs 9 years ago
  • A Midsummer's Night Dream definitely. Also Romeo and Juliet, in the final scenes when Juliet is sleeping but Romeo think he's dead. Macbeth and The Tempest may also have some subtle but relevant examples. – Aliya Gulamani 9 years ago
  • ' Hamlet's soliloquy easily comes to mind ("To sleep, perchance to dream..."). ' That is actually one of the quotes I was considering using as a starting point! Yes, A Midsummers Night Dream definitely! Thanks for the other references. I was also thinking of Othello. – Yama144 9 years ago
  • Othello is a great play. Could you refresh my memory: where is sleeping/dreaming mentioned or in what context is it presented? Just curious! – S.A. Takacs 9 years ago
  • Well I would have to re-read it, but I was thinking of referring to this article as well (if I can get my hands on it) “Shakespeare and Sleep Disorders”, Neurology 49 (1997): 1171–72. There are several references throughout Othello.... when I have time I'll post a few here.. – Yama144 9 years ago

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