What do I offer?
Online individually-tailored one-to-one Oxford-style tutorials in Shakespeare and English poetry, following a teaching tradition which I have personally found rewarding and enriching.
How will you benefit?
You will have your own intellectual personal trainer and guide to Shakespeare and English Literature.
You will stretch and exercise your mental muscles!
What do you need to offer?
An inquisitive mind, a sense of cultural curiosity and an enjoyment of poetic language.
You do NOT need an extensive knowledge of English Literature.
All you need is an open and receptive mind…
What do you want to study?
It’s entirely your choice, which I’m happy to discuss with you.
It can range from a wide study of Shakespeare’s life, times and works to an intensive reading of one of his plays, from reading a great epic like Milton’s Paradise Lost to studying the love lyrics of the Metaphysical Poets, from Chaucer’s Canterbury Tales to the great era of Romantic poetry.
Take a look at the ‘menus’; no fixed items, it’s all a la carte, with a range of options and choices. See what takes your fancy; then we can discuss your options. This individual bespoke system is totally flexible; you study what you want to study.
How will we interact?
These online tutorials are dialogues, not teacher’s monologues. What you have to say is equally important, and a vital part of the dialogue. You will be an active part of the process; you can think of it as having a personal trainer for the brain so you can stretch your mental muscles and strengthen your cultural understanding, in a process which you will also find a lot of fun.
Shakespeare was a popular entertainer writing scripts to a deadline for his acting company – he was not writing for academics.
If possible, come to the tutorial having read your chosen text in advance, and ready to discuss your reactions and feelings about the texts we are looking at, together with any questions you’d like to explore. Your ideas and opinions matter!
About John Case – The Oxonian Tutor
I was brought upon a farm five miles west of Exeter and used to help my father milk the cows.
I read English Language and Literature at St Edmund Hall, Oxford, graduating in 1970, after which I did postgraduate work on Shakespeare and Elizabethan & Jacobean Drama. In my second year, my English tutor at the Hall was away on sabbatical, so I had the great good fortune to be sent to St Anne’s College (where my mother had studied in the late 1920s) to be tutored by the charismatic Dorothy Bednarowska, who also taught luminaries such as Libby Purves and Tina Brown, who went on to edit The New Yorker. It was thanks to her rigorous, intimidating yet sympathetic teaching that I managed to achieve quite a decent degree.
I have recently retired to my native county of Devon, where I live in a cottage, in the country, five miles north of Exeter, overlooking a river meadow and the River Exe.
I have spent much of my teaching career abroad, in countries such as Sudan (where I started as a VSO — Voluntary Service Overseas — volunteer English teacher), Finland, Saudi Arabia, Brazil, and shorter stints in Czechoslovakia (as it then was), a couple of years before the Velvet Revolution and Spain, a memorable experience in the year after Franco died.
I have just returned from 12 years in Muscat, the capital of the Sultanate of Oman, teaching English Literature (Chaucer, Shakespeare, Jane Austen and Romantic Poets) and Western Civilization (from Homer to Einstein) in a university college for Omani women.
Now that I am free from a full-time job, I am embarking on a new kind of teaching project.
I am happy to offer two ‘taster’ sessions absolutely free, so that we can get to know each other, and the next six tutorials at a 25% discount.`
It depends on you:
daily – weekly – two or three times a week, whatever suits you.
Each tutorial will last a generous hour.
What resources will I need?
I can recommend books for you to buy online from Amazon, and I can email many poems to you as attached Word documents for you to printout and save.
I can supply cultural, historical, biographical and literary context to enrich your experience of Shakespeare and English poetry.
Do you enjoy `
- Jane Austen?
- Charles Dickens?
You can explore them in greater depth to enhance your appreciation and understanding.