Leadership and strategy in Shakespeare
: a comparative case-study of Julius Caesar and Henry V

  • Francisco Pinto Mouraz (Student)

Student thesis: Master's Thesis


This dissertation focuses on the leadership figures of Julius Caesar and Henry V through a double perspective, historical and Shakespearean, trying to evaluate if they convey any lessons for the leaders of today and tomorrow. The combination of historical and literary analysis expresses the two main purposes of the dissertation: exploring the strategic challenges Caesar and Henry had to face when in command and how they acted upon them, as well as a reflection on the relevance of Shakespeare’s work to the study of leadership. In regards to the first objective, it is argued that despite being inadequate to build a contemporary leadership framework from the lives of these men, they fit into a modern model of leadership which encompasses six characteristics - influence, purpose, direction, motivation, accomplishment and improvement. Moreover, their profiles also convey lessons on how to think strategically and how to adapt to changing circumstances. In regards to the second aim, it is claimed that Shakespeare’s work should not be taken as a structured portrait of individual leadership skills, but instead as a subtle analysis of the dilemmas inherent to any position of power. Ultimately, the inclusion of both historical and literary approaches can broaden the scope of leadership studies, adding a human dimension to this field of research.
Date of Award30 Jun 2015
Original languageEnglish
Awarding Institution
  • Universidade Católica Portuguesa
SupervisorRaquel Vaz Pinto (Supervisor) & Miguel Monjardino (Co-Supervisor)


  • Mestrado em Governação, Liderança e Estudos sobre a Democracia

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