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Monash University

Monash University Handbook 2010 Undergraduate - Unit

6 points, SCA Band 1, 0.125 EFTSL

FacultyFaculty of Arts
OfferedClayton Second semester 2010 (Day)
Coordinator(s)Will Peterson


This unit deals with traditional and contemporary Asian performance forms that have grown out of the cultures of India, China, Japan, and Southeast Asia. Additional focus will be given to recent developments in Asian theatre, English-language theatre in Singapore, and community-based theatre and religious drama in the Philippines. The unit will emphasise reading performance work in the historical and political context of Asian societies. Students will gain an understanding of the characteristic features of selected performance forms from each of these cultures, while learning to appreciate how these forms have assimilated a wide range of cultural, religious, and aesthetic influences.


On successfully completing this unit students will have achieved:

  1. An enhanced understanding of the richness and diversity of Asian cultures.
  2. Some familiarity with the major performance forms of Asia.
  3. The capacity to make connections between performance and history, politics, economics, and social and cultural policies.
  4. A basic understanding the epic stories at the core of performance forms throughout India and Southeast Asia.
  5. The ability to conduct research into an aspect of Asian theatre of their own choosing and to present their findings in an appropriate format.


Seminar participation: 20%
Research paper (1800 words): 40% +
Performance/project/ritual and reflective essay: 40%

Chief examiner(s)

Will Peterson

Contact hours

2 hours (1 x 2 hour workshop) per week

This unit applies to the following area(s) of study

Indonesian studies
Drama and theatre studies
Asian studies


First and second year Arts sequence