In this book, Charles and Elaine Hallett invite the reader to follow the actions of Shakespeare's plays. They show that the conventional division of the plays into scenes does not help the reader or play goer to discover how the narrative works. They offer instead a division into smaller units which they define as beats, sequences and frames. Detailed analysis of the unfolding action reveals that Shakespeare's scenes frequently consist of a series of sequences, each with its own individual climax, and these sequences are regularly built up of a succession of smaller units, or beats. Several sequences usually work together to create a still larger action, or frame. Study of these components yields valuable information about Shakespeare's playwriting techniques. The book will be of interest to students and scholars of Shakespeare and theatre studies as well as to actors and directors.
Table of Contents
1. Scene vs. sequence in Shakespeare's plays
2. The beat defined
3. Ancillary beats: the interval beat, the
interpolated beat, the linking beat
4. Sequential beats: the introductory beat
5. Sequential beats: the concluding beat 6.
Sequential beats: the intensifying beat
7. The dramatic question
8. Observing and meditating sequences
9. Reporting and interrogating sequences
10. Persuading sequences
11. Disputing sequences
12. Commanding sequences
13. Sequences combined: the frame