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Ch 7: MTEL English: Renaissance Literature

About This Chapter

This chapter on Renaissance literature can be used as a study aid for related content on the MTEL English exam. The video lessons are taught by professional instructors who are available to answer questions after you go through the material.

MTEL English: Renaissance Literature - Chapter Summary

This chapter is designed to build up your readiness for the portions of the MTEL English exam that focus on Renaissance literature, including key authors and works. The subjects examined in this chapter include:

  • An overview of Renaissance literature
  • Major works by Shakespeare, including Richard III, Romeo and Juliet, Julius Caesar and Macbeth
  • Shakespearean sonnets
  • Plays by Christopher Marlowe
  • Edmund Spenser's The Faerie Queene
  • Works by Ben Jonson
  • Characteristics of Renaissance literature

It will be easy to track your progress and monitor your recent activity with the dashboard feature, where you can get organized and support your learning with links to relevant practice quizzes and additional courses. While there, you'll also be able to ask questions of our subject experts if you're feeling stuck.

11 Lessons in Chapter 7: MTEL English: Renaissance Literature
Test your knowledge with a 30-question chapter practice test
Introduction to Renaissance Literature: Characterizing Authors and Works

1. Introduction to Renaissance Literature: Characterizing Authors and Works

Chances are, you've heard of the term 'Renaissance' before, but do you know what it means? Watch this video to learn about how this artistic movement forever altered England and the way we look at literature.

Introduction to Shakespeare: Life and Works

2. Introduction to Shakespeare: Life and Works

This video provides a crash course introduction to William Shakespeare's life, plays, and poetry. From 'Two Gentlemen of Verona' to 'The Tempest', we'll give you a timeline of his works and quick descriptions of what you need to know to identify them.

Richard III: Fact and Fiction in Shakespeare's History Plays

3. Richard III: Fact and Fiction in Shakespeare's History Plays

We'll tease apart the real and the invented in Shakespeare's Richard III and discuss Shakespeare's particular brand of historical fiction. We'll also go over the plot and characters, as well as some famous quotes from the work.

Romeo and Juliet: Shakespeare's Famous Star-Crossed Lovers

4. Romeo and Juliet: Shakespeare's Famous Star-Crossed Lovers

Great tragedies resonate throughout time. In this lesson, we'll go over the role of fate in Shakespeare's Romeo and Juliet. We'll explore the story of his star-crossed lovers and explain some of his most famous quotes.

Julius Caesar: Shakespeare's Play vs. History

5. Julius Caesar: Shakespeare's Play vs. History

In this lesson, we'll examine Shakespeare's take on the life of Julius Caesar, which spawned such famous quotes as 'Friends, Romans, countrymen, lend me your ears!' and 'Et tu, Brute!' We'll also take a look at Brutus and Cassius, the conspirators who plotted Caesar's demise, as well as Mark Antony and Octavius, who remained loyal.

Macbeth: Themes and Quotes from the Scottish Play

6. Macbeth: Themes and Quotes from the Scottish Play

In this lesson, we'll follow how ambition shapes the events of Shakespeare's Scottish play, 'Macbeth'. We'll explore the plot, characters and supernatural elements that are characteristic of this play.

Shakespeare's Sonnets: Reading and Interpreting the Major Poems

7. Shakespeare's Sonnets: Reading and Interpreting the Major Poems

In this video we'll learn about Shakespeare's sonnets, which contain some of his most famous poetry. Shakespeare addresses both a Fair Youth, speculated to be a young earl and patron, and a Dark Lady, whom he describes in frank and unromantic terms. We'll discuss the meter and rhyme scheme of the typical Shakespearean sonnet, as well as the structure of the overall work.

Introduction to Christopher Marlowe: Biography and Plays

8. Introduction to Christopher Marlowe: Biography and Plays

English playwright Christopher Marlowe was a contemporary of Shakespeare with a short but potent body of work to his name. Learn all about his plays - and his fascinating character - from our video lesson!

Introduction to Edmund Spenser: The Faerie Queene and Sonnets

9. Introduction to Edmund Spenser: The Faerie Queene and Sonnets

Edmund Spenser is one of the key figures in the English Renaissance, and he made his name mostly by writing about dragons and knights. Pretty cool, right? Watch this video to learn about this important author and his biggest work, The Faerie Queene.

Introduction to Ben Jonson: Poems, Plays and Shakespeare

10. Introduction to Ben Jonson: Poems, Plays and Shakespeare

To a great deal of people, for a great deal of time, English playwright and poet Ben Jonson was known merely as a rival (and inferior) to William Shakespeare. But there's more to the story than that! Watch our video lesson to get the skinny on Jonson's life and work.

Renaissance Literature: Characteristics & Writers

11. Renaissance Literature: Characteristics & Writers

Renaissance literature was born as the world emerged from the Middle Ages. It was the time of John Milton and Shakespeare. In this lesson, we will learn about the characteristics of the Renaissance period and the writers it produced.

Chapter Practice Exam
Test your knowledge of this chapter with a 30 question practice chapter exam.
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Practice Final Exam
Test your knowledge of the entire course with a 50 question practice final exam.
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