An introduction to Shakespeare's work designed for students interested in becoming familiar (or more familiar) with a selection of his plays. We will read eleven plays encompassing the distinct dramatic genres that Shakespeare employed: four tragedies, two comedies, three history plays, and two romances. My lectures will seek to discuss the dramatic form and thematic concerns of each play and to situate these plays in the cultural circumstances of Shakespeare's day. Emphasis in the lectures will be on learning to read these difficult texts closely and carefully, and on attempting to understand how these plays were constructed for the stage and not for the page. Lecturing will be the primary format of the class, although time will be set aside for questions and comments. Midterm, final exam, and one paper will be required.