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DTH5004 - Rethinking Theatre History

12 points, SCA Band 1, 0.250 EFTSL

Postgraduate Faculty of Arts

Leader: Rob Baum


Clayton Second semester 2007 (Day)


This unit explores ways of rethinking theatre history, including: challenges to received critical thinking and methodology, and canonical assumptions; implications for theatre history of parallel texts reflecting 'translations' into new media; responses of analytical and critical approaches in Drama and Theatre Studies to other disciplines; reframing canonical texts in light of contemporary theoretical and cultural perspectives, and the implications for historicised interpretation. It examines plays in relation to traditional scholarly interpretations and specific recent re-readings. At fifth-year level students are expected to demonstrate a deeper knowledge and integration of the material.


  1. A working awareness of contemporary theoretical perspectives.
  2. The capacity to apply specific theoretical approaches to a diverse range of theatrical texts.
  3. An ongoing sensitivity, openness and scepticism to shifts in the climate of disciplinary debate.
  4. A developed sense of the continuing volatility and contingency of intellectual debate in the field.
  5. A sophisticated understanding of the issues underlying those debates at a level appropriate to graduate study.
  6. Enhanced confidence in articulating informed arguments and interpretations, in both oral and written form.
  7. At fifth-year level students will be required to pay specific attention to a theoretical area, such as gender, race or identity politics, in their final essay.


exegetical essay (3,000 words): 30%;
oral class presentation (2,000 words): 20%;
long essay (4,000 words) 50%

Contact hours

2 hours per week


DTS/H 4000 is a compulsory class in the programme