18 October, Hamlet 5

Student Teaching Groups

Group Number Students
G4 Mark, Tejas, Jiale, Akhil
G16 Kevin, Jason, Brett, Wyatt
Please get into groups and discuss your responses to question that corresponds to group number. Once finished, draw your response on the board:
  • Group 1:How does Hamlet react when he finds out who’s skull he’s really holding (5.1.3373-3382)?
  • Group Two:How does Hamlet react when he finds out that Ophelia is dead and about to be buried (5.1.3471-3481)?
  • Group Three: Is Hamlet different when he gets back from his sea adventure (5.2.3669-76)
  • Group Four: What final, dying request does Hamlet make of Horatio and how does Horatio respond (5.2.3916-3824)?

Writing Workshop

  • 1. How to insert images? Any MLA or format questions?
  • 2. Write your paper topic/argument on the board.
  • 3. Discussion: What are you doing in your concussions? OR what does your essay have to do with environmental devastation and/or Climate Change?

Sample Essay


27 Sept. Hamlet Act 2 & Student Teaching Activity Prep

Featured Image: Da Vinci’s Vitruvian Man, 1490

Hamlet, Act 2: Overview & Pathological Collectables/Collectors

Remember that in the conclusion to his chapter,”Pathological Collectables,” Scott Herring tells us that he hopes to make “good on museum studies scholar Susan M. Pearce’s claim that ‘unacceptable collectors, among other things, are making important assertions about the ‘ordinary’ material world and out relationship to it, [a relationship] which we ignore to our detriment'” (84). By this Herring means that while people who have trouble letting do suffer pathological attachment to things, and should certainly be diagnosed and treated, they are also responding to and embodying ways larger social forces fail around grief, loss, and anxiety.


Take 5-7 minutes and respond to the following:
The characters spend the bulk of act two trying to diagnose Hamlet. Make a list of the diagnoses that are proposed. Are the proposed causes of Hamlet’s madness psychological or social?

Reaction Activity

  1. Get into your Student Teaching Groups, read through your assigned questions and the text the question asks about.
  2. Next, respond to your assigned question in 2-3 sentences at the number that corresponds to your group number on the board.
  3. Finally, once you have finished writing down your response, move to another group’s response and then read through it, and in 1-2 sentences explain why you agree or disagree with the other group’s responses on the board.

Group/Number Questions
G1, G7, G13 Polonius responds to Hamlet’s seeming craziness with “That he is mad, ’tis true. ‘Tis true ’tis pity,/And pity ’tis ’tis true–a foolish figure” (2.2.1125-1126). What’s Polonius even saying here? Do you agree with Polonius’s assessment, why/why not?
G2, G8, G14 What plan(s) do Polonius, Claudius, and Gertrude hatch to discovery the cause of Hamlet’s madness (2.2.1197-1201)? Do you think their will be plan(s) successful, why/why not?
G3, G9, G15 What does Hamlet mean when he says, “I am mad but north-north-west. When the wind is southerly I know a hawk from a handsaw” (2.2.1426-11427)?
G4, G10, G16 What is the topic of the speech that Hamlet begins, and the First Player completes (2.2.1510-1559). Why does Hamlet like the speech so much?
G5, G11, G17 What’s Hamlet’s assessment of the Player’s speech (2.2.1589-1611)? Do you think that his analysis of the speech is accurate, why/why not?
G6, G12, G18 What does Hamlet plan to do to “catch the conscience of the King” (2.2.1645)? Do you think does Hamlet’s attempt to discover Claudius’s secrets will be more or less successful than the ways the other characters have tried to discover his?

Back to the Paper Claims…

Take a few minutes and respond to the following. Please bring this response with you to class next Tuesday:

  • What is the relationship between Hamlet (or Hamlet) and one of the following key terms: hoarding, collectables, vibrant matter, preservation, waste, recycling, or accumulation?

Herring, “Pathological Collectables” (51-84)

Scott Herring, “Pathological Collectables” (51-84)

Keep the following questions in mind as you read Scott Herring’s, “Pathological Collectables,” (51-84). The questions are designed to guide your reading practices and our class discussions. You are not required to provide formal answers in class or online.

1. According to Herring why did the cookie jars in Andy Warhol’s effects cause a “minor object panic” (51)?

2. Why do you think that the sale of Warhol’s effects elicited such a wide spread reaction from mainstream news outlets such as Time, The New York Times, and Newsweek, as well as trade publications such as Art and Auction?

Wharhol’s Cookie Jars at Sotheby’s before auction in 1987

3. How does the DSM-5, and psychologist David Greenburg et. al., distinguish “‘normal collecting’” from ‘pathological collecting, or hoarding’” (52-3)? Why might this distinction matter?

4. What subtle linguistic distinction does Herring make by saying, “Shifting the tenor of hoarding as pathological collecting to hoarding as a non-normative engagement with collectables” (53) open up for him?

5. Spend a minute looking at Figure 2.1. (54-5): what sorts of objects are foregrounded? What sorts of objects recede into the background? What do you notice about the ways in which the objects in the picture are arranged? What are some points of contrast/compliment? Who’s the audience for this photo: academics, collectors, people who work at that warehouse? Compare Figure 1.1. to Figure 2.2. (59).

6. When did garage and yard sales become a fixture of US suburban life? What other changes were going in post WWII US that changed the ways that people thought about what can and should count as collectable?

7. What’s the difference between a “collectable” and an “antique”?

8. According to Herring, how did Ralph and Terry Kovel’s “half century of published work” (58) help to facilitate the “institutionalization of collectible goods across the US—the ‘normal collecting’ later cited by scientists I their efforts to further refine hoarding as mental disease” (59)?

9. How does Herring’s “concise history of collectibles relate to the widening divide between normal collecting and pathological hoarders” (60)?

10. How does hoarding “haunt” collectable culture—both the collectors and the things they collect?

11. What motivates a person to become a hoarder?

12. What is unusual about the article Jane Glick and David A. Halperin wrote for Addictive Disorders?

13. What critiques have accounts of collecting/hoarding in material culture studies leveled at the collector/hoarder distinction imposed by psychology research/diagnosis?

14. How does The Andy Warhol Collection, the catalog of stuff from the Warhol estate that Sotheby auctioned, “remain a contradictory testament to modern object taxonomy” (69)?

15. How did the Sotheby’s publication of the auction catalogue, The Andy Warhol Collection, “reinforce the notion that Andy” was a mad collector, hoarder, and a pack-rat? OR, why do collection guides/catalogues provide a reaction readers that is directly opposite from the one they intend?

16. What are the Warhol Time Capsules (TC’s)? How do the TC’s “augment the anxieties that attached to Warhol’s effects during Sotheby’s estate sale?


Time Capsules at the Warhol Museum in Pittsburg