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"Hamlet the Ham" with University of Chicago's Cynthia Rutz

  • Kibbitznest 2212 North Clybourn Avenue Chicago, IL, 60614 United States (map)
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Kibbitznest Liberal Arts Discussions are a collaboration with The University of Chicago Graham School to host presentations and discussions of original research.


Shakespeare's Prince Hamlet has often been perceived as a melancholy intellectual who cannot perform the one action he is supposed to do: the avenging of his father's murder.  On the contrary, he is someone whose very nature is theatrical: he is all about "acting" rather than acting. This discussion will examine Hamlet's over-the-top theatricality: his soliloquies, his verbal jousts, and his feigned madness.

Sponsor: Kibbitznest Books, Brews & Blarney


CYNTHIA RUTZ received her PhD from the University of Chicago in 2013. Her dissertation topic is Shakespeare’s King Lear and its folktale analogues, a subject on which she has delivered several lectures. For several years she worked with Mortimer Adler on his Paideia Project, an education reform project which encourages high school and elementary school teachers to help students think critically through Great Books seminars and coaching. Her academic interests include mythology, folktales, Milton, Willa Cather, and ancient Greek philosophy and literature. She joined the Basic Program in 1991, serving as Staff Chair from 1999 to 2004, and is currently Director of Faculty Development at Valparaiso University.

FREE & OPEN to the public

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