Romeo and Juliet

Use a teaching guide that includes a synopsis and commentary of Shakespeare's Romeo and Juliet, teaching activities, discussion questions, and essay topics. The famous tragedy of star-crossed lovers will fascinate your students; it is a good choice as an introduction to Shakespeare's plays.
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Updated on: December 4, 2000
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The Signet Classic edition of Romeo and Juliet has several excellent annotated bibliographies related to Shakespeare, his times, his theater and the play. Therefore, no additional references on these topics will be included here.

Suggested Titles

Teaching Shakespeare

Bailey, Paul. An Approach to Shakespeare through Drama. Use of English. v 36 n 2, Spring 1985, pp. 47-56.
Davis, Ken. Rehearsing the Audience: Ways to Develop Student Perceptions of Theatre. Urbana, IL: National Council of Teachers of English, 1988.
Dow, Marguerite R. The Shakespearean Play as a Theatrical Event in the classroom. English Quarterly. v 17 n 4, Winter 1984, pp. 16-22.
Evans, Bertrand. Teaching Shakespeare in the High School. New York: Macmillan, 1966.
Mallick, David. Shakespeare and Performance. Use of English. v 38 n 2, Spring 1987, pp. 33-37.
Mallick, David. What Could Be on the Left Hand Page? English in Australia, n 64, June 1983, pp. 59-68.
Wheelock, C. Webster. "Not Life but Love in Death": Oxymoron at the Thematic
Heart of "Romeo and Juliet
." English Journal. v 74 n 2, Feb. 1985, pp. 70-73.

Other Literature Dealing with Themes of Romeo and Juliet

Hostility and Its Effects on the Innocent
Houston, Jeanne W. and James Houston. Farewell to Manzanar. Boston: Houghton Mifflin, 1973.
Lee, Harper. To Kill a Mockingbird. New York: Harper and Row, 1961.
Lingard, J. Across the Barricades. New York: Grosset and Dunlap, 1973.
Speare, Elizabeth. The Witch of Blackbird Pond. Boston: Houghton Mifflin, 1958.
Sebestyen, Ouida. Words by Heart. Boston: Little, Brown, 1979.

Teenage Suicide
Anonymous. Go Ask Alice. New York: Prentice-Hall, 1971.
Guest, Judith. Ordinary People. New York: Viking, 1976.
Peck, Richard. Remembering the Good Times. New York: Delacorte, 1985.
Pfeffer, Susan Beth. About David. New York: Delacorte, 1980.

Decision Making
Hinton, S.E. The Outsiders. New York: Viking, 1967.
Lipsyte, Robert. The Contender. New York: Harper and Row, 1967.

The Generation Gap
Bridgers, Sue Ellen. Home Before Dark. New York: Alfred A. Knopf. 1976.
Frank, Anne. Anne Frank: The Diary of a Young Girl. New York: Doubleday, 1952.
Kerr, M.E.. Dinky Hocker Shoots Smack! New York: Harper and Row, 1972.

The Role of Friendship and Peer Pressure
Brooks, Bruce. The Moves Make the Man. New York: Harper and Row, 1984.
Golding, William. Lord of the Flies. New York: Putnam, 1954.
Guy, Rosa. The Friends. New York: Holt, 1973.

The Use of Deception and Its Consequences
Cormier, Robert. I Am the Cheese. New York: Pantheon, 1977.
Duncan, Lois. Killing Mr. Griffin. Boston: Little, Brown, 1978.
Kerr, M.E. Gentlehands. New York: Harper and Row, 1978.
Shreve, Susan. The Masquerade. New York: Alfred A. Knopf, 1980.

Teenage Love
Greene, Bette. Summer of My German Soldier. New York: Dial, 1973.
Guy, Rosa. My Love, My Love, or, the Peasant Girl. New York: Holt, 1985.
Lee, Mildred. The People Therein. Boston: Houghton Mifflin, 1980.
Lyle, Katie Letcher. Fair Day, and Another Step Begun. New York: Lippincott, 1974.
Mazer, Norma Fox. When We First Met. New York: Macmillan, 1982.

Isolation of the Tragic Hero
Cormier, Robert. The Chocolate War. New York: Pantheon, 1974.
Miller, Arthur. Death of a Salesman. Bantam, 1951.

Interdisciplinary Study

Family Dynamics
Bane, Mary Jo. Here to Stay: American Families in the Twentieth Century. Basic Books, 1976. (Good background for teachers; good reference for students.)
Gambino, Richard. Blood of My Blood: The Dilemma of the Italian-Americans. New York: Doubleday, 1974. (Useful background on Italian family systems.)
Ginnott, Haim. Between Parent and Teenager. New York: Macmillan, 1969. (Good reference book for teachers.)
Howard, Jane. Families. New York: Simon And Schuster, 1978. (Useful resource for teachers and students.)
Weston, Jean. The Corning Parent Revolution. Rand, 1981. (Good reference book for teachers.)

Adolescent Experience
Coleman, J.S. The Adolescent Society. Free Press, 1961. (Good resource for teachers.)
Eagan, Andrea B. Why Am I So Miserable If These Are the Best Years of My Life? New York: Lippincott, 1986.
Erickson, Erik. Identity: Youth and Crisis. Norton, 1968.
Fine, Louis L. "After All We've Done for Them:"Understanding Adolescent Behavior. New York: Prentice-Hall, 1979. (Reference for teachers.)
Kaplan, Louise J. Adolescence: The Farewell to Childhood. New York: Simon and Schuster, 1984.
Showalter, John E. and Walter R. Anyan. The Family Handbook of Adolescence. New York: Alfred A. Knopf, 1981.

Sexuality and Romantic Love
Buscaglia, Leo R. Loving Each Other; Living, Loving and Learning; and Love. New York. Holt.
Hamilton, Eleanor. Sex with Love: A Guide for Young People. Beacon Press, 1978.
Pomeroy, Wardell B. Boys and Sex (Revised ed.). New York: Delacorte, 1981.
Pomeroy, Wardell G. Girls and Sex (Revised ed.). New York: Delacorte, 1981.

Jacobs, J. Adolescent Suicide. Wiley Press, 1971.
Mack, John and Holly Hickler. Vivienne: The Life and Suicide of an Adolescent Girl. New York: New American Library, 1982.

Avoiding Censorship
American Library Association. Intellectual Freedom and the Rights of Youth - Information Packet. ALA, 1979.
Burress, Lee and Edward B. Jenkinson (Eds.). The Students' Right to Know. National Council of Teachers of English, 1982.
Committee on Bias and Censorship. Censorship: Don't Let It Become an Issue in Your School. National Council of Teachers of English. 1982.
Davis, James E. Dealing with Censorship. National Council of Teachers of English. 1979.
Shugert, Diane P. (Ed.). Rationales for Commonly Challenged Limiting What Students Shall Read: Books and Other Learning Materials in Our Public Schools--How They Are Selected and How They Are Removed. Association of American Publishers, American Library Association, and Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development, 1981.
National Council of Teachers of English. The Students' Right to Read. NCTE, 1982. Office of Intellectual Freedom. Intellectual Freedom Manual (2nd ed.). American Library Association, 1983.


Currently Associate Professor of Education at the University of North Carolina at Asheville, Arthea (Charlie) J. S. Reed has taught for 20 years on both the high school and college level. She received her A.B. (Bethany College) and her M.S. (Southern Connecticut State University) in English and her Ph.D. (Florida State University) in Teacher Education. In addition to teaching, Charlie has been The ALAN Review (NCTE) editor since 1984 and served as Co-Director of the Mountain Area Writing Project (a part of the National Writing Project) from 1982 to 1988. She is also the author of Reaching Adolescents: Young Adult Books and the School (Holt, 1985) and Comics to Classics: A Parents' Guide to Books for Teens and Preteens (IRA, 1988).


Presently serving as Chair of the Secondary English Committee, Department of Language Education at the University of Georgia, W. Geiger (Guy) Ellis received his A.B. and M.Ed. degrees from the University of North Carolina and his Ed.D. from the University of Virginia. For over 25 years Guy has been active in teaching adolescent literature in the classroom and in training future teachers in its use, lecturing and writing extensively on the subject as well as on more traditional educational topics in the "Probes" column of English Education and other journals. He developed and edited The ALAN Review (NCTE) from 1978 to 1984, changing its focus from a newsletter to a fully refereed journal with an emphasis on articles with research and instructional significance.

ISBN: 0-451-52661-9
Copyright © 1996 by Penguin USA
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