Module Description:

Screen adaptations of Shakespeare form a significant part of our cultural experience of his plays, and increasingly they are seen as a crucial element in the study of his works. In LiFTS, where we have a tradition of interdisciplinary approaches to texts, Shakespeare on Film represents an excellent opportunity to bring together the interests of our literary, film studies, drama, and creative writing students, and to present them with an important and critically acclaimed body of texts.

The syllabus consists of five screen adaptations of four different plays by Shakespeare. They have been chosen to represent a series of different and notable developments in the history of Shakespeare in global cinema. We begin and end with Hamlet, first in Feng Xiaogang's the Banquet and then, to close the term, in Vishal Bhardwaj's Haider. Along the way, we'll investigate Aparna Sen's Arshinagar (Romeo and Juliet), Leila Hipólito's As Alegres Comadres (The Merry Wives of Windsor)/Iván Lipkies Huapango (Othello), and Akira Kurosawa's Throne of Blood (Macbeth).

Learning Outcomes:

  1. By the end of the module, you will be familiar with a group of texts – original plays and film adaptations - significant for their literary and cultural merit.
  2. By studying the changing treatments of Shakespeare’s texts across multiple languages and a span of fifty years, you will be able to evaluate the effect of political and cultural circumstances on the adaptation.
  3. Skills in presentation and critical analysis will be developed in the seminars on this module

Course Leader:  

Dr Nora J. Williams -- call me Nora, please. I use she/her pronouns.

You can email me at:

I'll check email at the start and end of each working day (M-F). I will aim to respond to all emails within 2 working days.

Academic Support Hours (ASH):

 Mondays 11:00-1:00

ASH are times when I will be available to meet with students by default. I will never have anything other than student meetings scheduled during these times. They are here to support you in your learning. When you come to ASH, we might discuss questions you have about the reading, brainstorm ideas for an assessment, or go deeper into a topic that you’re particularly interested in.

You are always welcome at ASH even if there’s nothing ‘wrong’—it’s okay (and encouraged!) for you to come by just to chat about how things are going in the module or your course.

There are two ways to access ASH this term: drop-in and by appointment.

You can drop in on Mondays between 11:00am and 12:00pm at this Zoom link (or use meeting ID 9913 3818 930).

Alternatively, you can schedule a 15-minute appointment on Mondays between 12:00pm and 1:00pm using this Calendly link. After you’ve scheduled a time, I will send you a unique Zoom link for the meeting.

If there are no appointments available in the week you’d like to meet, or if Mondays aren’t available for you, feel free to email me, and we’ll do our best to arrange another time to meet.