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Bill Shakespeare was a Geographer


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Presentation from Jo Debens' TeachMeet talk on literacy in Geography from the Geographical Association Conference. General links to Shakespeare text and how to use in Geography lessons.

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Bill Shakespeare was a Geographer

  1. 1. Bill Shakespeare was a Geographer…. …or getting literacy into Geography Jo Debens @GeoDebs
  2. 2. What is the link… 21/38?
  3. 3. Measure for Measure The Tempest Using Bill's blurb to set the scene Midsummer Night’s Dream Contagious fogs; which falling in the land Have every pelting river made so proud That they have over borne their continents… That nine men's morris is fill'd up with mud, And the quaint mazes in the wanton green For lack of tread are indistinguishable The Isle is full of noises, Sounds, and sweet airs, that give delight and hurt not. Sometimes a thousand twangling instruments Will hum about mine ears; and sometimes voices To bathe in fiery floods, or to reside In thrilling region of thick-ribbed ice; To be imprisoned in the view less winds, And blown with restless violence about The pendant world
  4. 4. King Lear Play spot the geographic feature… The Tempest (on St Elmo’s Fire) Then meet and join. Jove's lightnings, the precursors O' the dreadful thunder-claps, more momentary And sight-outrunning were run; the fire and cracks Of sulphurous roaring the most mighty Neptune Seem to besiege and make his bold waves tremble, Yea, his dread trident shake. Blow, winds, and crack your cheeks! Rage, blow You cataracts and hurricanoes, spout Till you have drench'd our steeples, drowned the cocks! You sulph'rous and thought-executing fires, Vaunt-couriers of oak-cleaving thunderbolts, Singe my white head; and thou all-shaking Thunder, Strike flat the thick rotundity o'th'world!
  5. 5. Make comparison to other texts.. Jules Verne ‘Journey to the Centre of the Earth’ Robert Harris ‘Pompeii’ Above our heads, not more than 500 feet away, was the crater of the volcano. Every quarter of an hour there came flying from it a tall column of flames mixed with pumice stone, ashes, and lava, together with a deafening explosion. I felt the whole mountain heave every time it breathed, sending out, like a whale, fire and air through its enormous blowholes. "Mother Nature is punishing us, for our greed and selfishness. We torture her at all hours by iron and wood, fire and stone. We dig her up and dump her in the sea. We sink mine shafts into her and drag out her entrails – and all for a jewel to wear on a pretty finger. Who can blame her if she occasionally quivers with anger and rains fire upon us?" Pliny.
  6. 6. Shakespeare was a Little Ice Age climatologist… Julius Caesar The Tempest As You Like It I have seen tempests, when the scolding winds Have roved the knotty oaks, and I have seen The ambitious ocean swell and rage and foam, To be exalted with the threatening clouds Put the wild waters in this roar, allay them. The sky, it seems, would pour down stinking pitch, But that the sea, mounting to the welkin's cheek, Dashes the fire out. Oh I have suffered. The season's difference, as the icy fang And churlish chiding of the winter's wind, Which, when it bites and blows upon the body, Even till I shrink with cold…
  7. 7. Using your imagination can lead to problems of misconception… e.g. • Bohemia is landlocked…but Shakespeare described it as coastal • Athens is described as a ‘real English countryside’ So…give students some text, analyse it, then play spot the deliberate mistake. Compare the description to real life.
  8. 8. Fact vs Fiction • Using the extract of text that you have use the internet to find out how accurate that description is of the place BRONZE task: Find and locate the real location in the modern world. Find 3 images to show the area today. Describe the location. Compare to what your text said: similarities and differences. SILVER task: Can you plot this information onto a map (O.S. map through Bing or Google Earth screenshot)? Describe the modern location & compare to the text in detail: social, economic, environmental. GOLD task: Can you create photo & text place-marks on Google Earth? Create a tour that compares the text information to the modern day location. Include specific fact, e.g. development data
  9. 9. General wordy bits
  10. 10. Redacted text
  11. 11. Text analysis
  12. 12. Vowel-less words