Shakespeare enjoys near-universal agreement among scholars as well as the general public that his works are among the greatest of humanity's cultural expressions, and that we all should know and understand them. But, simply put, Shakespeare is difficult. His language and culture-those of Elizabethan England, 400 years ago-are greatly different from our own, and his poetry, thick with metaphorical imagery and double meanings, can be hard to penetrate. Now, in the 24 revealing lectures of How to Read and Understand Shakespeare by award-winning Professor Marc C. Conner of Washington and Lee University, you can learn a set of interpretive tools, drawn from the texts themselves, that give you direct insight into Shakespeare's plays. These guiding principles allow you to follow the narratives of the plays as they unfold, with a clear understanding of how the plays function and fit together. The tools you learn are yours for years of enjoyment of these monumental treasures of our culture.