Summer Shakespeare II

Bruce A. McMenomy, Ph.D. for Scholars Online
2022: Wednesdays, 1:00-3:00 p.m. Eastern Time
June 15 - Aug. 10

June 15:
The Comedy of Errors
Shakespeare's Sources

June 22:

June 29:
The Winter’s Tale
Dramatic Unities

July 6:

July 13:
Henry VI, Parts 1, 2, and 3
History and Politics

July 20:
Antony and Cleopatra
Characterization and Time

July 27:
The Merry Wives of Windsor
Shared Characters

August 3:
Love’s Labour’s Lost

August 10:
All’s Well That Ends Well
The Problem Comedies

Love’s Labour’s Lost

Things to consider while reading Love’s Labour’s Lost

We know from other sources that this play was the first of a pair, the second (now lost) surviving only in its title, Love’s Labour’s Won. As such it is curiously incomplete. It also contains a few rather peculiar elements that are hard to square with the overall flow of the plot, though it is impossible from here to say whether they would have made more sense had they been taken up again in the sequel.

The play is a relatively early one — having been written in 1595 — and its pillorying of the Spanish ambassador may reflect the general English attitude toward the Spanish after the destruction of the Spanish Armada (1588).

Here is the Royal Shakespeare Company’s page on Love’s Labour’s Lost, containing information on the production history with the company.

Here is the Shakespeare Birthplace Trust’s page on Love’s Labour’s Lost, with information about productions of the play going back to 1885.

Here’s a summary of Love’s Labour’s Lost on film.

Love’s Labour’s Lost and what has come before

Shakespeare’s Sources

Themes that emerge in the play (only a few of the many)

Symmetries in the play

Problems in the play