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DRPS : Course Catalogue : School of Literatures, Languages and Cultures : English Literature

Undergraduate Course: Early Drama: Performance and Reception (ENLI10283)

Course Outline
SchoolSchool of Literatures, Languages and Cultures CollegeCollege of Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences
Credit level (Normal year taken)SCQF Level 10 (Year 4 Undergraduate) AvailabilityAvailable to all students
SCQF Credits20 ECTS Credits10
SummaryThe course will study a range of plays written and performed in England and Scotland from the late medieval period to the early Renaissance. It will explore the ways in which dramatists represented important social and political issues, addressing themes such as political power and disorder, morality and vice, male and female sexuality, and spiritual redemption through often startling combinations of comedy, pathos, humanity, and brutality. It will also look at the ways in which these plays self-reflexively examine dramatic representation itself as an issue, foregrounding their own performances and the responses of spectators as parts of the process of play-making. The ways in which early drama has been represented on the modern stage will also be considered, via recordings of modern productions of early plays (and where possible live productions), in order to explore the challenges of producing early drama in the modern theatre.

It offers students the opportunity to explore dramatic works written in very different cultural contexts, and to consider how far Medieval and early Renaissance concepts of performance and reception, comedy, tragedy, pleasure and suffering have relevance for modern audiences. It will encourage students to read plays not merely as texts but as scripts for (and sometimes also records of) performance. The emphasis will be on gaining an understanding of how these plays may have been realised in production in the fifteenth and sixteenth centuries, and how they have been (or might be) imaginatively recreated by directors and companies in the twentieth and twenty-first centuries. In the course of the term, students will be able to respond to the success or otherwise of a variety of modern productions through a number of written reviews.
Course description Not entered
Entry Requirements (not applicable to Visiting Students)
Pre-requisites Students MUST have passed: ( Literary Studies 1A (ENLI08020) AND Literary Studies 1B (ENLI08021) OR English Literature 1 (ENLI08001) AND Scottish Literature 1 (ENLI08016)) AND ( Literary Studies 2A: English Literature in the World, 1380-1788 (ENLI08024) AND Literary Studies 2B: English Literature in the World, post-1789 (ENLI08025) OR Scottish Literature 2A (ENLI08022) AND Scottish Literature 2B (ENLI08023) OR English Literature 2 (ENLI08003) AND Scottish Literature 2 (ENLI08004))
Prohibited Combinations Other requirements None
Additional Costs Essential course texts
Information for Visiting Students
Pre-requisitesA MINIMUM of 4 college/university level literature courses at grade B or above (should include no more than one introductory level literature course). Related courses such as cross disciplinary, "Freshman Seminars", civilisation or creative writing classes are not considered for admission to this course.
Applicants should also note that, as with other popular courses, meeting the minimum does NOT guarantee admission. In making admissions decisions preference will be given to students who achieve above the minimum requirement with the typical visiting student admitted to this course having four or more literature classes at grade A.

** as numbers are limited, visiting students should contact the Visiting Student Office directly for admission to this course **
High Demand Course? Yes
Course Delivery Information
Not being delivered
Learning Outcomes
On completion of this course, the student will be able to:
  1. Analyse dramatic texts as records of and/or scripts for performance
  2. Discuss critically the central features of drama in the pre-playhouse period
  3. Discuss the cultural background to key pre-Shakespearean dramatic texts
  4. View dramatic productions in a sophisticated and informed way, alive to both the similarities and differences between the early and modern stage
  5. Write a brief, informed review of a dramatic production
Reading List
Additional Information
Course URL
Graduate Attributes and Skills Not entered
Special Arrangements Numbers are limited, with priority given to students taking degrees involving English or Scottish Literature
Additional Class Delivery Information 1 hour(s) per week for 11 week(s): attendance at Autonomous Learning Group for one hour a week at times to be arranged.
KeywordsNot entered
Course organiserProf Greg Walker
Course secretaryMiss Helene Thomsen
Tel: (0131 6)50 3618
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