Approved by Faculty Senate

 

University Studies Course Approval Form

Department: Theatre and Dance

Course Number: 210

Semester Hours: 3

Frequency of Offering: 1/year; one section of 30 students

Course Title: Theatre History and Dramatic Literature I

Catalog Description: Survey of the works of major Western playwrights through 1800, their cultural contexts and staging practices. No prerequisite for general education students. Prerequisites for THAD majors/minors: THAD 119, HIST 121. Additional assignments required. Concurrent registration in THAD 090 required of THAD majors and minors unless excused by the department. Offered yearly.

This is an existing course that has previously been approved by A2C2.

Department Contact Person: David Bratt dbratt@winona.edu

This course is submitted to satisfy the requirements in Arts and Sciences Core: Humanities

Syllabus Listing of Course Objectives / Outcomes: Students in this course will: bullet bullet• become familiar with Western theatre history from its origins to 1800, including key personalities, theories, and staging practices, techniques, and conventions;

• become familiar with Western dramatic literature of these periods, including the plots and principal characters of representative classics, and similarities and differences between plays of a given period or genre and those which precede or follow them;

• explore the interrelationships between changes in theatrical practices, theories, and conventions; dramatic literature; and the larger society in which the theatre exists;

• practice liberal arts values and skills, including an appreciation of the continued pertinence of the classics of dramatic literature, the value of critical and analytical activity as applied to playscripts, and doing and reporting on research, both orally and in writing.

The University Studies Program specifies that Humanities courses must include requirements and learning activities that promote students' abilities to: bullet bulleta. identify and understand specific elements and assumptions of a particular Humanities discipline

Various assignments introduce students to the assumptions of those who study theatre history and dramatic literature, particularly the latter. These include the persistence of ‘human nature’ through time and across cultures; the inductive and indirect nature of the communication between author and audience; the active, constructive role of the viewer in the creation of meaning; the uniqueness of the world created by each playscript; and the corresponding need to attend to idiosyncratic features of the text.

b. understand how historical context, cultural values, and gender influence perceptions and interpretations

As noted in the Syllabus Listing of Course Objectives/Outcomes, above, one of the course’s primary aims is to "explore the interrelationships between changes in theatrical practices, theories, and conventions; dramatic literature; and the larger society in which the theatre exists." Students also study the "similarities and differences between plays of a given period or genre and those which precede or follow them." Both these objectives speak to the issue of the influence of historical context and cultural values upon perceptions and interpretations.

As students analyze plays from a variety of historical periods, they are explicitly and repeatedly enjoined to support their conclusions with data from the playscript, not simply from their own preferences and prejudgments.

c. understand the role of critical analysis (e.g. aesthetic, historical, literary, philosophical, rhetorical) in interpreting and evaluating expressions of human experience

The course surveys both the history of Western theatre (including staging practices, economic relationships, and key statements and manifestoes) and the development of dramatic literature (i.e., a species of literary art). Students also write a research paper on a topic in of these areas. Thus, students are introduced to both historical and aesthetic/literary analysis in their classroom work and practice one of these forms of analysis in their research paper.

THAD 210-Theatre History and Dramatic Literature I

Instructor: bullet bulletDavid Bratt

PAC 206 X 5241 e-mail: dbratt@winona.edu

Office Hours: MTWHF 10-11; or by appointment (sign up on office door)

University Studies: This course satisfies the Humanities requirement in the Arts and Sciences Core of WSU’s University Studies program. It includes requirements and learning activities that promote students' abilities to: bullet bulleta. identify and understand specific elements and assumptions of a particular Humanities discipline

b. understand how historical context, cultural values, and gender influence perceptions and interpretations

c. understand the role of critical analysis (e.g. aesthetic, historical, literary, philosophical, rhetorical) in interpreting and evaluating expressions of human experience

Course activities and assignments that most specifically address these Humanities Requirements will be identified in the syllabus by letter, thus: (A), (B), (C).

Course Objectives: students in this course will bullet bullet bullet• become familiar with Western theatre history from its origins to 1800, including key personalities, theories, and staging practices, techniques, and conventions;

• become familiar with Western dramatic literature of these periods, including the plots and principal characters of representative classics, and similarities and differences between plays of a given period or genre and those which precede or follow them;

• explore the interrelationships between changes in theatrical practices, theories, and conventions; dramatic literature; and the larger society in which it exists;

• practice liberal arts values and skills, including an appreciation of the continued pertinence of the classics of dramatic literature, the value of critical and analytical activity as applied to playscripts, and doing and reporting on research, both orally and in writing.

Textbooks: bullet bulletMachiavelli, Mandragola

Plautus, Pot of Gold and Other Plays

Possin and Hansen, Self-Defense: A Student Guide to Writing Position Papers

Sheridan, School for Scandal and Other Plays

Watson and McKernie, A Cultural History of Theatre

Worthen, Harcourt Brace Anthology of Drama (3rd edition; no, you may not use the 2nd edition instead)

Wycherley, Country Wife

Reserve readings (at Maxwell Library Circulation Desk)

bullet bulletSuggested: Turabian, A Manual for Writers of Term Papers or The MLA Style Sheet

All these books will probably be used when the course is next taught in the Spring of 2001. In addition, Possin and Hansen, Turabian, Watson and McKernie, and Worthen will be used in THAD 310-Theatre History and Dramatic Literature II in the Fall of 2000.

Course Requirements: bullet bulletRead: assigned playscripts, theatre history textbook chapters, reserve readings

Take: quizes, three tests (one of them during the final exam period)

Present: oral reports, brief written reports, and a written research paper

Extra credit: non-THAD majors may keep and periodically submit a journal

  bullet bulletAdditional requirements for THAD majors and minors:

1. In addition to the playscripts studied in class, THAD majors will read and submit written reports on two additional playscripts from among the historical eras covered in the course.

One report will be in the form of an action chart, completed according to the format learned in THAD 119-Play Reading; the other report will be in the form of a 2-page essay discussing the 'goal' of a major character, also according to the format learned in Play Reading. Due dates for these reports are on the Schedule page of this syllabus.

2. THAD majors are required to keep and submit a journal: see the ‘Journal’ section of this syllabus.

3. THAD majors and minors will complete a certain number of lab/studio hours: see the ‘Lab hours’ section of the syllabus.

Grading: Oral reports and quizes each count 10% toward the course grade; the three tests each count 20%; the research paper counts 20%. Failure to complete any one of these elements may result in a course grade of F.

In addition, course grades may be raised or lowered as much as 20% for exceptionally weak or strong class attendance, participation in discussions, and work on other assignments.

Attendance: You are expected to treat attendance in this course as seriously as you would attendance at a paying job in your career field. In such a job, excessive absences indicate to an employer that your heart or mind or both are elsewhere, and your future with the employer is not bright.

You may skip class this semester no more than three times without penalty; missing class the day before or after a holiday will count as two skips; quizes will not be made up; students who miss class on a day they are scheduled to give a report or take an exam must contact the instructor in advance if they wish to make up the missed work.

The grades of students who miss due dates for research paper activities (in bold on the schedule pages) will be lowered as much as an additional 20%. Grades of papers submitted late will be lowered 1/3 grade per day.

Quizes (A): See the schedule pages of this syllabus for the dates of quizes on plays. In addition, you can expect other unannounced quizes on textbook and other assigned readings.

All quizes: the lowest quiz grade will be dropped. Quiz questions will deal with details which you should be able to remember after a careful reading of the assignment.

Quizes on plays: given on the first day of class discussion of that play. To earn credit for one of the 4-5 questions on the quiz, you must come to class with one question, already written out on the quiz paper, which asks about a problem which you had trying to understand the play. This question must deal with the events of the plot or the actions of the characters; questions or comments such as "Is this play typical?" or "I had trouble remembering who was who" or "Why do they speak in verse?" will not receive credit.

Tests: each of the three tests will cover about 1/3 of the semester's work. Each will consist of essay and objective parts; each part will count 50%.

The essay part will be take-home. The objective part will consist of multiple choice, true/false, and short answer questions about material covered in the textbook, anthology, individual playscripts, and class activities. In addition, there will be a series of fill-in-the-blank questions, one for each play studied, requiring you to date each play, correctly spell its title and the names of the author and major characters, and describe the plot.

First Written Report ( C ): This is to be a clearly written and organized summary (2 pages maximum; typed or word-processed; maximum 12-point font size; 1" margins; featuring acceptable college-level grammar, punctuation, and spelling) of Kevin Possin and Craig Hansen, Self-Defense: A Student's Guide to Writing Position Papers, available in the WSU Bookstore.

To get you started, note that this pamphlet acquaints you with two kinds of papers, the "position paper" and the "critical review" paper. In your report, identify the distinguishing marks of each kind of paper: in other words, if you were reading a paper, how could you tell which of these two kinds it was?

Research Paper ( C ):1500 word minimum; 3000 word maximum. Typed, double-spaced, 1" margins, with footnotes or endnotes for research sources cited and bibliography of sources consulted, following the format of Turabian’s A Manual for Writers of Term Papers or MLA Style Sheet.

The research paper you write for this course should be a position paper. (To understand the meaning of this term, see the "First Written Report" section of this syllabus.)

The research paper may not be about a play we study in the course or which you write about in one of your THAD Major reports. Possible topics include, but are not limited to, the following topics about which there is controversy: bullet bullet• the genre of a playscript about which critics disagree

• the "goal" or "spine" of a character (or of a playscript as a whole) about which critics disagree

• what Aristotle meant by "catharsis," "flaw," or some other disputed term

• whether there was a raised stage in the Greek classical theatre

• whether Roman actors wore masks

• the origins of medieval cycle plays: did they develop directly from liturgical drama?

• the physical layout and elements of the Elizabethan (or Shakespearean) theatre

• the correctness, pertinence, or accuracy of some aspect of Neoclassical theory (for example, one or more of the three unities, the need for theatre to give examples of proper conduct, etc.)

Due dates for elements of the paper-writing process are listed on the schedule. These include submission of topic, preliminary list of sources, notes taken from sources, outline (including thesis statement, major points, and subpoints), and submission and resubmission of the final draft. Except for the last two of these, all are to be presented to the instructor during an appointment in his office.

This research paper is to meet the instructor's writing standards policy, described on a separate sheet. A paper's grade will be lowered 1/3 grade each time it needs to be resubmitted; it will also be lowered 1/3 grade for each day it is late. Students whose papers do not conform to the standards described in the instructor's writing policy by the beginning of the exam period will receive an E in the course.

Oral Reports (B): you will present 2 oral reports chosen from the topics below. One of these will be a "time-line report" which you do with other class members; the other will be a "topical report" which will be an individual effort.

Each report should be 5-10 minutes in length. They will be graded on the basis of content and delivery--that is, both on the accuracy and completeness of what is said (and what is presented on the hand-outs) and how well (how confidently and clearly) it is presented.

Time-line reports: these materials will be given to you by the instructor.

Topical reports: Each topical report should: bullet bullet• include hand-outs for class members to help them retain your most important points. At the very least, the hand-outs should include an outline of the points that will be covered in the report (to guide listeners' note-taking) and a bibliography of sources consulted for the report. Hand-outs which do more than this will have a positive effect on your grade.

• include a section which points out the relevance the topic has for theatre practice in the years before or after...in other words, "What are the links or connections between the topic and what happened before or happens later in theatre?"

• use a minimum of 4 research sources besides the course textbook. Of these 4 sources, (a) no more than one may be a web site or an article in an encyclopedia or dictionary; and (b) no more than one may be a theatre history textbook.

Choices for the topical reports include the following (you may suggest alternative topics): bullet bulletClassical Greek Theatre

A playwright (Aeschylus, Sophocles, Euripides, Aristophanes, Menander)

Aristotle

Democracy in Athens

City Dionysia and play contests

Development of Greek theatre buildings

Medieval Theatre

Medieval staging options

Feudalism

The influence and power of the Church

Gothic cathedrals

Feast of Corpus Christi

Italian Renaissance Theatre

Development of proscenium arch

Development of perspective painting

Commedia dell'arte

Medici family

Sebastiano Serlio

Nicola Sabbattini

Giacomo Torelli

Bibiena family

Development of opera

English Renaissance (Elizabethan) Theatre

Queen Elizabeth I

Humours psychology

English Civil War

Size and shape of Globe Theatre

A playwright (Marlowe, Kyd, Shakespeare, or Jonson)

French Renaissance (Neoclassical) Theatre

A playwright (Corneille, Moliere, Racine)

The French Academy and Le Cid

Richelieu and the development of the French monarchy

Giacomo Torelli

Neoclassical music or painting

English Restoration and 18th Century Theatre

An actor (such as David Garrick)

A playwright (Dryden, Wycherley, Lillo, Sheridan, Goldsmith)

Jeremy Collier

The 'Glorious Revolution' (or ‘Bloodless Revolution’)

'Sentimental' vs. 'laughing' comedy or ‘Sentimentalism’ and TV soap operas

The Licensing Act of 1737

Diderot and the ‘Paradox of Acting’

Plagiarism: All work produced by a student must represent that student's personal effort, unless the instructor specifically permits or requires that it be done by a group. Papers and other work which a student prepares for class (including quiz questions) will contain only the student's own words or, if the material originated with someone else, will enclose the quoted words in quotation marks and supply complete bibliographical information in a footnote or endnote.

Summaries or paraphrases of the words or ideas of other people must also be documented in this fashion.

Work that does not exhibit these characteristics is a form of academic dishonesty known as plagiarism. In addition, the making of false statements designed to earn a student the right to make up missed work or cheating on quizes or tests are also violations of academic honesty.

Any of the above will result in the student's immediate expulsion from the course with a grade of F in the course. In addition, such activities may result in additional sanctions, up to and including suspension or expulsion from the university.

JOURNALS

Journal—Keeping Requirement

Theatre majors and Dance minors are required to make at least five entries per week in course journals and to submit them to their instructors at least twice during the semester. bullet bulletNote: If you wish, you may keep a single journal during the semester, consisting of entries that cover all your THAD-related classes and other experiences.

If you choose this option, you should expect to write longer entries than you would for any single course’s journal. In addition, some of your instructors may continue to require that you write about certain sorts of things in your entries.

Design course sketch books are not included in this provision.

Purpose

Writing journal entries can serve a number of important functions. For instance, they can help you: bullet bullet• do better on some course assignments.

• become a better writer.

• reflect on things you encounter in class and 'give a name to' them.

• speak about ideas with more clarity and confidence.

• make connections between things you encounter in this course and other courses.

In addition, your instructor can read your journal to learn what is and isn't working in the course. bullet bulletNote: At the end of each semester, save your journal and all other writing you do in every course you take. You will need these things when you take a later THAD course that is required for graduation (see the "Portfolio" section of your THAD Student Handbook for details).

If you wish, you may store your journal and other written material from the course in the THAD Department Office for safekeeping at the end of the quarter. Better yet, get acquainted with the Skillview computer software and use it to keep a permanent record of your portfolio materials.

Grading

Your instructor will tell you how much your journal will count toward your grade for this course.

Grading standards for your journal entries are as follows:

The best entries are submitted on time; their length is appropriate; they consistently and effectively deal with the topics and issues specified by the instructor

Adequate entries are submitted on time; their length is appropriate; they often deal effectively with the topics and issues specified by the instructor

Barely adequate entries are submitted late; they are often redundant, too brief, or simply summarize material rather than deal effectively with the topics and issues specified

Clearly inadequate entries are not submitted

Journal Format

When composing your journal entries, do the following: bullet bullet• either type them or write them in ink; only sketches or drawings may be done in pencil

• use paper that is 3-hole punched and clean-edged, not torn from a pad with tattered edges

• follow whatever instructions your instructor gives you about your entries' length and quality (for instance, is 'first-draft' OK, or should entries be more extensively polished and revised?)

Suggestions

The following ideas may help you make better journal entries: bullet bullet• If the journal entry is about class activities, write it soon after class is finished. Perhaps even bring the journal to class with you.

• Get in the habit of writing your entries in the same place and at the same time of day.

• When writing an entry about a reading assignment, keep the journal next to you while you are reading. That way, you can write something down immediately as it occurs to you

Write your entries to yourself —or, as someone has said, 'Write to the person you will be three months from now.'

Topics for Journal Entries

Journals may include many different kinds of entries. Your instructor will tell you which of the following materials and topics you should include as journal entries for this course: bulleta. drawings, pictures, and other non-verbal materials

b. notes you take in class

c. notes you take about reading or observation assignments

d. handouts you receive in class

e. papers you write as class assignments, including research papers, abstracts of articles, and reviews or critiques of films, videos, or live productions you see in or outside class

f. a log of your activities as a crew head or performer in a THAD production

g. your perceptions about class assignments or activities in class. (For instance, you might discuss what you think was the major point of an instructor's lecture or what in an instructor's lecture was unclear to you)

h. "Response" journal entries about reading assignments: bullet1. first thoughts: write down anything that comes to you in relation to the text

2. connections between the reading and your own experience: does the reading remind you of anything or anyone? do you see any similarities between this material and other books or issues?

3. questions you ask about the text: what perplexes you about some passage or point? Try beginning your entry with "I wonder why..." or "I'm having trouble understanding how..." or "I was surprised when I read that..."

4. try agreeing with the writer (or arguing with her): think of all the things you can say to support her ideas. Or identify the points or issues on which you disagree with her. Or write about what happens when you put yourself in her shoes.

5. words, images, phrases, or details that strike you. Speculate about them: why are they there? what do they add? why did you notice them?

6. identify the author's point of view, his attitude toward what he is saying.

i. your reactions to others' critiques of your work. For instance: bullet1. what points did they make?

2. did you agree or disagree? why?

3. what specifically will you do as a result of their feedback?

j. your thoughts about a process you're engaged in during the course. Some common topics may include: bullet bullet1. comments about your progress through various steps you take to complete an assignment such as studying for a test or writing a research paper:

•ideas? where did you get

• how did you explore the subject?

• what problems did you encounter?

• what revision strategies did you use?

2. changes you might make in order to do an assignment or study for a test better next time

3. what are the strengths of your work? what still makes you uneasy with it?

4. what makes your most effective pieces of work different from your less effective pieces?

5. what qualities can you eliminate or include more of in order to improve your writing or other work?

k. your thoughts now about a journal entry you made earlier in the quarter

l. your reactions to a comment your instructor made about your journal entries

m. your perception of connections between material in this course and other courses

n. your perception of connections between material in this course and experiences you've had outside your college coursework

o. your perception about connections between this course and the work you hope to do after you graduate

Date

Activity

Assignment

1/12 Intro to course  
1/14 Origins of theatre Ch 1; submit written report ( C )
  ACTF week of 1/17-23  
1/17 No class  
1/19 Classical Greek theatre (B) Ch 2
1/21 Greek theatre reports; time line report  
1/24 Oedipus quiz, discussion (A) Read Oedipus
1/26 Oedipus; video  
1/28 Lysistrata quiz, discussion (A) Read Lysistrata
  1/29 Misalliance; Guthrie; 10 am  
1/31 Lysistrata Paper topic to instructor this week ( C )
2/2 Aristotle’s Poetics discussion (B) Read Aristotle selection (anthology)
2/4 Journal article reading assignment Do journal article reading assignment
  One-Act Contest 2/5, PAC Main Theatre; DanceScape 2/10-12  
2/7 Roman theatre (B) Ch 3 Paper sources to instructor this week (C)
2/9 Roman theatre reports; time line reports  
2/11 Brothers Menaechmus quiz, discussion (A) Read Brothers Menaechmus
2/14 Medieval theatre; video (B) Ch. 4 Paper notes to instructor this week (C)
2/16 Medieval theatre reports, time line report  
2/18 No class  
2/21 Second Shepherd’s Play quiz; Abraham/Isaac video Read Second Shepherd’s Play (A)
2/23 Everyman quiz, discussion (A) Read Everyman
2/25 First test  
2/28 Italian Renaissance Theatre; video (B) Ch 5 & reserve readings Paper thesis this week (C)
3/1 Italian Renaissance reports, time line rpt  
3/3 Mandragola quiz, discussion (A) Read Mandragola; THAD majors’ first play report due
  Spring Break  
3/20 Elizabethan Theatre (B) Ch 6 and reserve readings
3/22 Elizabethan reports, time line report  
3/24 Faustus quiz, discussion (A) Read Dr. Faustus
  3/25 Darker Face of the Earth; Guthrie; 10 am  
3/27 Faustus  
3/29 Sidney’s ‘Apology’ (B) Read Sidney selection (anthology)
3/31 No class  
  Rumplestiltskin 4/4-8  
4/3 Tempest quiz, discussion (A) Read Tempest Paper outline/draft this week (C)
4/5 Tempest  
4/7 Second test  
4/10 French Neoclassical Theatre (B) Ch 8 and reserve readings
4/12 French Neoclassical reports, time line rpt  
4/14 Neoclassicism lecture Readings; THAD majors’ second play report due
4/17 Phaedra quiz, discussion (A) Read Phaedra; Fish summary due (B)
4/19 Phaedra  
4/21 Tartuffe quiz, discussion (A) Read Tartuffe Submit paper in final form (C)
4/24 Tartuffe  
4/26 Restoration and 18th Century Theatre (B) Ch 10-11, reserve readings, Dryden (anthology) (B)
4/28 Rest/18th Cent reports, time line report  
  4/29-30 Shakespeare in the Park  
5/1 Country Wife quiz, discussion (A) Read Country Wife
5/3 Country Wife  
5/5 Recruiting Officer quiz, discussion (A) Resubmit paper in final form today (C)
5/8 Recruiting Officer  
5/10 School for Scandal quiz, video (A) Read School for Scandal
5/12 School for Scandal  
5/13 Guthrie; Plough and the Stars; 10 am  
5/15 Third test: Monday, 1:00 p.m.  
5/19 Commencement  

 

� David Bratt - 1/11/01