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PBS: In Search of Shakespeare

Ben Jonson's now legendary epitaph for William Shakespeare ("He was not of an age, but for all time"), has become part of the common lore surrounding the man who is arguably the most famous playwright of all time. Numerous documentaries exist focusing on the Immortal Bard, but this new four-part series from PBS (with this accompanying website), represents the first time that a full-scale life of William Shakespeare has been attempted on TV. There's a great deal on the site of interest, but it's perhaps best to start with the Shakespeare Dossier, which has been painstakingly researched by the documentary's investigative team. Through this rather comprehensive timeline, users will be able to learn about the key details that shaped Shakespeare's life, and follow hypertext links to learn about the places and people that were an integral part of the his life as well. As users explore the timeline, they will notice additional clickable icons above the main timeline, allowing them access to a glossary of relevant terms from the Elizabethan period, links to full-text versions of the Bard's works, and an interactive map of 16th century England. Along with these many delightful features, visitors simply must try the Playwright Game feature, where they are swept into the heady world of the 16th century playwrighting world, and must make hard decisions about the central themes of their various plays. The site concludes with a multitude of educational resources for teachers seeking to inculcate an appreciation of Shakespeare in their students.
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