1300 Words and 5 quotes – MINIMUM
Henry V : In the past (even up until World War II) it has been often considered a “patriotic” play about England’s destiny and special relationship in
“God’s plan”; however, more recently critics have tended to see the play’s portrait of Henry as ambiguous or troubled at best. Shakespeare’s real portrait of
Henry may lie somewhere between two extremes: England’s virtuous, conquering hero, bravely leading his men to God-sanctioned victory over French
aristocrats. Or, a Machiavellian operator who manipulates his men through rhetoric and other means to accomplish personal glory on the battlefield and an
expansion of his power – it is also possible with Shakespeare that Henry combines BOTH extremes into a fully complicated portrait. Write an essay which
1. Addresses this complex issue of Henry’s character
2. Develops some thoughts about how the play might have contributed the formation of a specific identity for England as a unified NATION.
3. Merge these thoughts into a concluding meditation on how Henry’s good and bad leadership AND the against all odds victory at Agincourt may have
contributed to Shakespeare’s conception of an English unified nation
Introduction to Shakespeare
Rubric for Henry V Essay
Required Elements: Not Part of Grade – Penalties Assessed
___Turned in on Time: No=See Late work Policy in Syllabus
___Meets Minimum Page Length Requirement (1300 words) -10%
Use of the Text of the Play: [15%] Each Item is worth 5.
___Text is cited minimum of Five Times & Citations are identified by Act/Scene/Line Numbers
___The Text is used substantively, and quotes are contextualized properly
___The writer engages with the text through analysis and interpretation
Addressing the Essay Questions: [60%] Each Item is worth 20.
___Works extensively with the central question of King Henry’s character in the play; where does he fall on the continuum of hero and villain?
___Presents a clear exploration of how the play might contribute to English nation formation
___Examines the role of Leadership as evidenced at the Battle of Agincourt
Overall Effect of the Essay: [25%] Each Item is worth 5.
___Writer’s assertions are grounded in evidence from the text, not speculation
___The essay presents clear evidence that the play was read and understood thoroughly
___ Develops an interpretation of the play that touches on larger issues without engaging in simple Plot Summary
___Ideas and interpretations are developed well, not left unfinished
___ Shows development of thought, insight, or originality