Document Type



Master of Arts (MA)



First Advisor's Name

Vernon Guy Dickson

First Advisor's Committee Title

Committee Chair

Second Advisor's Name

Heather E. Blatt

Second Advisor's Committee Title

Committee Member

Third Advisor's Name

Andrew Strycharski

Third Advisor's Committee Title

Committee Member


Shakespeare, Women, Feminism, Adaptation, Film Adaption, Appropriation, Whedon, BBC, Much Ado About Nothing

Date of Defense



Shakespeare’s Much Ado About Nothing has been reproduced multiple times in a contemporary context. This thesis focuses on two key productions, BBC’s ShakespeaRe-Told televised adaptation and Joss Whedon’s 2013 film and examines how these productions translate the gender themes in the play to a contemporary setting. To study translations of gender, this thesis is focused on the adaptations of Beatrice and Hero, two major female characters of the play. The comparison of these adaptations is accomplished through analyzing the pieces and reviewing existing work. While there are some important differences between the adaptations, the major problems Beatrice and Hero are limited by as women are problems that can be successfully transferred to the contemporary setting. Conclusively, these adaptations choose to demonstrate that women facing limitations in their own microcultures have the agency to accept these limitations or try to do something about them.





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