Read the Othello script, and write a response paper of it. (Even better if you can watch a Othello play on Youtube)
From the syllubus:
“A 700- to 1000-word response paper to Othello text. The goal of a response paper is not to forward an argument but to specify three questions that the script poses for you and to suggest some possible answers to those three questions. This response paper will count as 25 per cent of your final grade. ”
Guidelines for your review project
Please note that the primary purpose of the review assignment is not evaluation (as
it might be in a newspaper or online) but analysis of the performances choices that
the director, actors, and designers have made. Here are some questions to ask
? What alterations did the director make in the received script? What cuts
were made? Was anything added? Was the sequence of scenes rearranged
in any way? With what results?
? What major choices have been made with respect to bodies, space, time, and
? Were there aspects of the play that you noticed in production or in the film
that you did not notice when you read the script? What accounts for that?
? Were there aspects of the play that you noticed in reading that you missed in
the performance or the film? What accounts for that difference? How
important are the aspects that were suppressed?
? Did the production choices ever seem to be confused or conflicted? How did
that confusion or conflict become manifest? Were there any moments when
the confusion or conflict was resolved?
? If the production or the film attempted to give the fiction a definite
geographical and historical location, how did that location change your
experience of the play?
? If its a production youre reviewing, was there a sustained pattern of
blocking choices? Did certain characters consistently assume more
prominent positions onstage?
? If its a film youre reviewing, was there a sustained pattern of camera-angle
choices? Did certain characters command more camera time than others?
Were certain characters featured more often than others in close-ups?
? What effects did choices about lighting contribute?
? What effects did choices about music or other non-verbal sound contribute?
? Which scene or scenes assumed most prominence? Why? Were there any
scenes, by contrast, that seemed under-played or under-emphasized? With
Only after youve answered specific questions like these are you in a position to
evaluate the performance or the film. In your review make sure that you specify
the name of the director, the names of the principal actors, the theater or the film
studio, and the date of the production or the release.
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