Ch 2: Shakespeare Essay Topics

About This Chapter

Help your students create essays on a variety of Shakespeare's plays using the list of essay topics given in this chapter. These topics can become a handy tool in your tool box, saving you valuable time and effort.

Shakespeare Essay Topics - Chapter Summary

Use these lessons on Shakespeare essay topics to develop writing prompts your students can use to write essays on topics drawn from some of the Bard's most famous plays, including A Midsummer Night's Dream,Othello, Hamlet and Henry V . Topics include feminism, reputation, violence, symbolism, deception, revenge, and others.

These lessons provide you with a host of ideas for writing prompts. You can assign essays based on a wide range of topics suggested by the plays, such as appearance vs. reality, self-love, soliloquies and temptation, to list only a few.

How It Helps

  • Saves planning time: These lessons can save you valuable time by providing ready-to-use essay topics, activities and research paper ideas for your Shakespeare units.
  • Generates ideas: These materials will give you a starting point for new essay ideas and journal prompts to help you make sure your students understand Shakespeare.
  • Ensures topic coverage: By using these prompts, you can be sure of comprehensive treatment of the main topics covered in each play.

Skills Covered

When you've finished the chapter, you should be able to assign essay topics, journal prompts and research papers on:

  • A Midsummer Night's Dream and love in A Midsummer Night's Dream
  • Antony and Cleopatra, As You Like It, Cymbeline, Henry V, Richard III and The Tempest
  • Polonius, Ophelia and poison in Hamlet
  • Symbolism, blindness, madness, justice and Goneril in King Lear
  • Banquo, King Duncan, common themes and minor characters in Macbeth
  • Appearance vs. reality, free will, violence, loyalty, temptation, soliloquies, betrayal, the conscious and sleep imagery in Macbeth
  • Iago, sexism, imagery, prejudice, human nature, jealousy, revenge, deception, reputation and role of fate in Othello
  • Feminism in the Taming of the Shrew
  • Self-love, gender roles, Viola, disguise and comedy in Twelfth Night

24 Lessons in Chapter 2: Shakespeare Essay Topics
The Tempest Essay Topics

1. The Tempest Essay Topics

The Tempest is one of Shakespeare's great comedies, and it can be really fun and meaningful for students. This lesson offers some essay topics that will help them think critically about the play.

Feminism in the Taming of the Shrew Essay Topics

2. Feminism in the Taming of the Shrew Essay Topics

Some critics describe 'The Taming of the Shrew' as an essentially feminist play, while others argue with this interpretation. This lesson offers essay topics that will help your students develop their own theories about feminism in this Shakespearean work.

Shakespeare's Richard III Essay Topics

3. Shakespeare's Richard III Essay Topics

He's a villainous hunchback who schemes his way to the throne of England. Richard III is one of William Shakespeare's most popular plays and one of his most compelling characters. Read on to find essay topics you can assign your students about the play.

Symbolism in King Lear Essay Topics

4. Symbolism in King Lear Essay Topics

~'King Lear~' is one of Shakespeare's most important tragedies, and analyzing it on a literary level can be very meaningful to students. This lesson offers essay topics focusing on the use of symbolism in the play.

Justice in King Lear Essay Topics

5. Justice in King Lear Essay Topics

This lesson is designed for teachers in search of essay topics to use with secondary English students. The essay topics in this lesson will cover the theme of justice in William Shakespeare's ~'King Lear.~'

King Lear Essay Topics on Blindness

6. King Lear Essay Topics on Blindness

Blindness is one of the most important themes in Shakespeare's ~'King Lear~', and it can be difficult to understand. This lesson offers a series of essay topics that will help your students understand blindness in the context of the play.

King Lear Essay Topics on Madness

7. King Lear Essay Topics on Madness

Madness is one of the most salient and upsetting themes in Shakespeare's tragedy ~'King Lear~', and it requires careful attention from readers. This lesson provides essay topics that will help your students make sense of madness in this play.

Antony and Cleopatra Essay Topics

8. Antony and Cleopatra Essay Topics

Read on to discover essay topics that'll unlock your students thinking and interpretation of William Shakespeare's 'Antony and Cleopatra.' This a complex play that goes well beyond just retelling a historical romantic story. Students should be prepared for a tale of war, power and politics.

Cymbeline Essay Topics

9. Cymbeline Essay Topics

William Shakespeare's Cymbeline reads like a modern-day reality show. The following essay topics explore the main themes in the play and allow students to incorporate their own opinions and rationales into studying this play.

A Midsummer Night's Dream Essay Topics

10. A Midsummer Night's Dream Essay Topics

A Midsummer Night's Dream can be a wonderful introduction to Shakespeare for many students. This lesson offers general essay topics that will help your students get as much as possible out of the play.

Goneril in King Lear Essay Topics

11. Goneril in King Lear Essay Topics

Shakespeare's 'King Lear' is a tragedy that deals with complex themes about family, revenge, and envy. This lesson offers a series of essay prompts that will help students focus on the character of Goneril.

Henry V Essay Topics

12. Henry V Essay Topics

In ''Henry V'', William Shakespeare explores the questions of war, leadership and morality. As you would expect from the bard, he provides no easy answers to those questions; however, he does provide students with plenty to write about.

Self-Love in Twelfth Night Essay Topics

13. Self-Love in Twelfth Night Essay Topics

The theme of self-love is one of the less discussed themes from ''Twelfth Night'', but it is nonetheless an important one. This lesson offers essay topics that will help you think about self-love in this play.

Twelfth Night Essay Topics on Gender Roles

14. Twelfth Night Essay Topics on Gender Roles

Gender is one of the most significant themes in Shakespeare's 'Twelfth Night.' Find ideas for essay prompts to help students enhance their comprehension and critical thinking about the play through a focus on gender roles.

Disguise in Twelfth Night Essay Topics

15. Disguise in Twelfth Night Essay Topics

If your students are interested in disguise as a literary theme, Shakespeare's 'Twelfth Night' is a wonderful play to work with. This lesson offers essay topics related to disguise in 'Twelfth Night.'

Comedy in Twelfth Night Essay Topics

16. Comedy in Twelfth Night Essay Topics

If your students are reading ~'Twelfth Night~', by William Shakespeare, you have a wonderful opportunity to teach them about literary comedy. This lesson provides a series of essay topics that have to do with comedy in this play.

Twelfth Night Journal Prompts

17. Twelfth Night Journal Prompts

If your students are reading Shakespeare's 'Twelfth Night,' writing in a journal can be a very effective tool helping students to enhance their comprehension. This lesson offers journal prompts that can help students keep track of their thinking about this important play.

Viola in Twelfth Night Essay Topics

18. Viola in Twelfth Night Essay Topics

Reading Twelfth Night with your students can be great fun as well as intellectually stimulating. The essay topics in this lesson will help focus your students' attention on the complex character of Viola and what she means within this play.

Twelfth Night Research Paper Topics

19. Twelfth Night Research Paper Topics

Sometimes, when students read Shakespeare, it can be a great idea to help them do external research related to a play. This lesson offers ideas for research paper topics related to the play ~'Twelfth Night.~'

Love in A Midsummer Night's Dream Essay Topics

20. Love in A Midsummer Night's Dream Essay Topics

Shakespeare's ~'A Midsummer Night's Dream~' is one of his most classic and readable comedies. The essay topics in this lesson will help your students analyze the role and meaning of love in this play.

As You Like It Essay Topics

21. As You Like It Essay Topics

Your study of William Shakespeare's 'As You Like It' won't be complete until your students write about the play. Fortunately, the lighthearted comedy is heavy with topics to write about.

Julius Caesar Compare & Contrast Essay Topics

22. Julius Caesar Compare & Contrast Essay Topics

Shakespeare's Roman tragedy offers readers a variety of approaches to understanding the text. This lesson focuses on compare and contrast essay topics that will help students arrive at a deeper comprehension of 'Julius Caesar'.'

King Lear Act 2 Discussion Questions

23. King Lear Act 2 Discussion Questions

Are your students finding it somewhat challenging to grasp the complexities of Shakespeare's ''King Lear?'' These following discussion questions will assist your students in understanding Act 2 of ''King Lear.''

A Midsummer Night's Dream Unit Plan

24. A Midsummer Night's Dream Unit Plan

''A Midsummer Night's Dream'' has the complex language and lengthy cast of characters that is a hallmark of Shakespeare plays. This unit plan enables you to help high school students break down language, connect characters, and understand satire.

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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