Thematic Guide/Quotes/Notes Handout

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King of the Socratic Ring Discussion Guide (Julius Caesar)
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Argue for one of the statements on the Caesar Themes guide (see back).
What is the most important theme of Julius Caesar?
Describe Shakespeare’s writing style.
What symbolism and omens did Shakespeare present? What role do omens and superstition play in Roman
Society? In our society?
What makes him the greatest playwright/writer of all time?
Is Caesar a tyrant or a victim, a benevolent king or an oppressive dictator? Did he deserve his death? Was it
just or unjust? Necessary or not?
Considering all the signs and warnings, did Caesar have enough to avoid his fate or was his fate determined
in the stars? Are men truly “masters of their own fate?”
Was Brutus a revolutionary or traitor, and honorable man or an unfaithful friend?
Was Cassius a wise, powerful leader or a paranoid, insecure politician?
Was Antony a loyal friend to Caesar or an opportunistic politician, a clever strategist or a lying powermonger?
What makes the mob mentality powerful and dangerous? How do mobs form? What I the difference
between a mob and a movement?
What literary, personal, historical, and modern-day connections can you make to the story?
Evidence (quote
w/Act.Scene.Line#)
Explanation/Connection to
claim (How does the quote
prove your claim?)
Julius Caesar Discussion Guide: Leadership, Superstition, Fate, Power, Government, Rhetoric, Revolution
In the space provided mark whether you agree or disagree with each statement.
_______________ 1. It is never right to kill another person.
_______________ 2. Political leaders usually act in the best interest of their countries.
_______________ 3. If a political leader has committed a wrong, it is all right to get rid of him
or her by whatever means necessary.
_______________ 4. "Power corrupts, and absolute power corrupts absolutely."
_______________ 5. A political leader should bend or break the law if it is for the good of the country.
_______________ 6. People should never compromise their ideals or beliefs.
______________ 7. "My country right or wrong" is not just a slogan; it is every citizen's
patriotic duty.
_______________ 9. "Cowards die many times before their deaths; the valiant taste of death but
once."
_______________10. "The evil that men do lives after them; the good is [often buried] in
their bones."
_______________11. The ends justify the means (Machiavelli).
_______________12. We should allow good dictators to rule.
_______________13. Duty and loyalty to country is more important than duty and loyalty to friends, or to any one
friend.
_______________14. He who speaks well, leads well.
_______________15. He who leads well must speak well.
_______________16. Fate is, to all appearance more unavoidable than unexpected (Plutarch).
_______________17. “Men at sometime were masters of their fates. / The fault, dear Brutus, is
not in our stars, / But in ourselves, that we are underlings” (Cassius, I.ii.140–142).
_______________18. Superstitions are real and true.
________________19. I would betray my friend if he hurt the country.
________________20. I would betray my friend for the sake of a good revolution.
________________22. All revolutions must use force.
________________23. Some humans are more equal than others.
________________24. One can control people with words.
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