The Fool in Shakespeare: Dr Gary Day

"The Fool is usually seen as the person who tells truth to power but there is much more to him than that. First there’s the problem of definition. Is the Fool different from the Clown? Second, why are some Fools named and others not? We have Touchstone in As You Like It but just the Fool in King Lear. This five week course will examine the different Fools in Shakespeare’s work. If they simply speak truth to power, why do they appear more in comedy than tragedy where the misuse or usurpation of power is usually the main theme? And, most importantly, why does the Fool vanish from Shakespeare’s later works? If you want the answer, sign up for the course. "

Tutor: Dr Gary Day

"Dr Gary Day was a principal lecturer in English at De Montfort. He gave the centenary lecture on F.R. Leavis at Cambridge and for many years was on the committee of the British Society of Eighteenth Century Studies. He is the author of five books, including one on Leavis, and his latest, The Story of Drama: Tragedy, Comedy and Sacrifice from the Greeks to the Present, was described in the Times Literary Supplement as ‘an ambitious book, richly informative, consistently readable and conscientiously argued’. He has edited various collections of essays on topics ranging from Victorian literature and culture to D H Lawrence. Gary was also for many years a columnist and reviewer for the Times Higher. His essay John Bunyan: Class and Englishness will be published in the The Oxford Handbook of John Bunyan."