Study Abroad - Shakespeare and the Theatre

London • Stratford • Oxford

December 28 - January 14, 2017

There is no better place to study Shakespeare than on the banks of the Thames, the alleys of Eastcheap, and amidst the architecture and vistas that he knew. Although Shakespeare’s texts provide us with some of our richest literary experiences, the playwright hardly thought about publication. The theater was a living, money-making scheme, shaped by its location outside the city walls, by immediate political situations, and by the actors and patrons who entered the gates of the playhouse. This course will teach Shakespeare as one of history’s great artists – whose greatness was forged within the contingencies and pressures of the real world. Much of that world is still there to be
studied and experienced.

Students can choose one of the following courses:

  • Theatre 385: Shakespeare

  • Literature 385: Shakespeare

  • English 385: Shakespeare

Sites visited include London, Stratford and Oxford. 

Course description

The purpose of this course is to provide a college level introduction to Shakespearean drama that will be stimulating, challenging, and enjoyable. Special emphasis will be placed on close reading, character development, poetry, and major themes. We will also visit key historical sites in order to greater understand the political and intellectual circumstances in which Shakespeare was writing.  Special attention will be paid to Shakespeare as a writer for the stage and a man of the theatre, with visits to theatres to hear and see plays, backstage tours, and critical discussions of directorial, design, and acting choices.

See the full itinerary here. The schedule is tentative and subject to change.

About the Professor

David Hay, PhD, is a professor at the University of San Diego (USD) and is a co-founder of the MFA Program in Acting, a program he directed for seven years. He has also been the director of the Southeast San Diego Tutoring Program and the director of the Undergraduate Theatre Arts Program at USD.

In addition to 26 years of work at USD, Dr. Hay was also an associate director at The Old Globe Theatre in San Diego for ten years, and for nine years was the artistic director of Center Repertory Company in Walnut Creek, CA. He has had a 32 year professional theatre career, directing more than 70 productions at theatres across the country. He has also published two books, a critical edition of a 17th century play, Nobody and Somebody, and a drama textbook, Contact With Drama, co-authored with James F. Howell.

Program Fees

All program fees include tuition for 3 credits, lodging, medical insurance, entrance fees to all museums and guest lecture venues, transportation to and from each city, breakfast daily and most dinners.

Students who enroll in a January Term Seminar and the spring semester in Aix-en-Provence consecutively will receive a $500 grant. Visit IAU's Scholarship website for additional details.

Students participating in the Shakespeare & the Theatre Seminar who also attend IAU College for the Spring semester in Aix-en-Provence are encouraged to participate in the Early Start Program the week of January 14-21, 2017. Students who attend both the J-Term and Spring semester can attend the Early Start Program for a reduced fee. The Early Start Program allows students to move in with their French hosts a week before the semester begins, receive French language instruction and participate in local cultural activities!

     January 2017: $5,245

Students on the 2015 J-term Program