Focus: Entering the absurd world of Rosencrantz and Guildenstern Are Dead
2. Warm-up: The flip of a coin
a. Take a coin and flip it in the air 20 times. Record how many times it comes up heads, and how many times it comes up tails. Interpret/explain the results.
b. Now, imagine that you take a quarter (a normal quarter) and flip it in the air twenty times. If it were to come up heads each time, would you be surprised? Why or why not? In your opinion, is the world generally an orderly or a disorderly place?
c. Look back to the definition of existentialism I offered you yesterday and to the definition of Theatre of the Absurd I will offer you today. How would an existentialist and/or an absurdist explain the imaginary phenomenon above?
Click HERE for a lecture on the Theatre of the Absurd.
3. Reintroducing yourselves to Rosencrantz and Guildenstern via two clips
- How does the title alone suggest the existentialist undertones of this play?
- Why might Tom Stoppard have picked these two characters for his play?
4. Acting out the beginning of Act One
As we read, keep a log in your composition book of this play's use of extended metaphors:
- Where do you see elements of the Theatre of the Absurd?
- Which objects clearly serve as metaphors?
- What larger ideas to they stand for and how?
1. Continue working on your culminating essay.
2. If you plan on revising either your critical essay or your poetry essay, please do so by the end of April.