10-second review: Show students how Shakespeare intensifies meaning by using rhetorical devices.
Title: “No Reason Without Rhyme: Rhetorical Negotiation in Shakespeare.” Cheryl Hogue Smith. English Journal (September
2009), 91-98. The secondary school journal of the National Council of Teachers of English (NCTE).
Quiz: “Please mark whether the following couplets are perfect rhyme (e.g., ball/fall) or slant rhyme (e.g., they/ them):
Juliet: God night, good night! Parting is such sweet sorrow,
That I shall say good night till it be morrow. Romeo and Juliet.
Duke: And live; if no, then thou art doomed to die.
Jailer, take him to thy custody.” Comedy of Errors.”
Summary/Quote: “I want to propose, however, that in teaching the rhyme, meter and other rhetorical devices in context in Shakespeare’s plays, we can help students better understand Shakespeare’s verbal artistry and how that artistry relates to meaning.” p. 97.
Note: See Sister Miriam Joseph. Rhetoric in Shakespeare’s Time.
Comment: Unlike Chaucer whose use of rhetoric in many of his early works was merely standard and relatively unrelated to meaning (Stopper, 1967, Unpublished M.A. Thesis, Villanova University), Shakespeare’s word artistry is made more effective by his use of rhyme, scansion and other rhetorical devices. RayS.