School of Theatre, Performance and Cultural Policy Studies
TH224 Contemporary American Theatre
Contemporary American Theatre focuses on experimental work in theatre and drama in the United States from the 1970s to the present. We will look at avant-garde theatre artists that have changed the direction of American theatre and cutting-edge plays that have dramatized social and political events and issues that have shaped the American experience over the last 50 years.
By the end of the course, students will be able to:
• demonstrate an understanding the major directions of American theatre over the last thirty years
• articulate the relationship between theatre and society in the United States
• critically evaluate the work of experimental companies
• analyze the dramatic literature within a socio-political context
• independently undertake both primary and secondary reading and articulate research findings orally and in writing
Students will achieve the learning outcomes through readings in both primary and secondary sources, seminars, and explorations of issues of race, class, and family within the American context.
Even though we are just scratching the surface of contemporary American theatre and performance, the readings are extensive, so please organize your time carefully. The plays must be read by the day listed on the syllabus. The class schedule is subject to change. On each day, we will do some activity that requires your knowledge of the plays, i.e. getting in small groups to design the set or costumes, explore a theme, analyze a character, or develop producible interpretations.
Susan Haedicke (s dot haedicke at warwick dot ac dot uk)
Spring: Tuesday - 1600-1800 - G56