A Midsummer Night's Dream

If we Shmoopers have offended,
Take this course, and all is mended.

Ever had a mad crush on someone and that person just wasn't that into you? Don't worry, Shmoopers, we've all been there. Helena in A Midsummer Night's Dream has been there too, so she totally gets it.

See, she digs this guy Demetrius. Only he's in love with her friend Hermia. Hermia loves Lysander, but her dad wants her to marry Demetrius. Even though Lysander's cool and everything.

Confused yet? Oh, what a tangled web these four weave. You'd be forgiven if you thought this was headed toward a tragic ending, complete with broken hearts and ice cream binges.

But this is a comedy, folks. And you know what that means: Shakespeare works his magic with the help of a little love juice. And by the end of the play, everyone is ready to live happily ever after. Yep, it's pretty much as fairytale-like as it gets.

With intros, readings, and activities, by the end of this course, you should be able to

  • identify and recognize key themes in A Midsummer Night's Dream, including the nature of love, reality and fantasy, and the use of art and culture.   
  • compare and contrast A Midsummer Night's Dream to other tales of romantic love that use similar tropes.   
  • use textual evidence from A Midsummer Night's Dream to support original arguments about the play's themes, characters, and literary techniques.   
  • analyze and close read the language and descriptions of fairies and their distinct fantasy world. 
  • describe the central conflict inA Midsummer Night's Dream.

Just lay off the love potions, eh?

Unit Breakdown

  1. A Midsummer Night's Dream - A Midsummer Night's Dream

    Voted Shmoop users' favorite Shakespearean play, A Midsummer Night's Dream has something for everyone. This unit will be a crash course in all things Puck 'n' friends, so get ready for some excitement.

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