50% - Written exam (1.5 hours)
Essay topics 2014-15
Due: Thursday, 20/11/13, week 8, e-submission and hard copy to Kate by 4 p.m.
Length: 2500 words.
When writing on one of the following topics, remember to be as specific as you can be in terms of the focus of your analysis, the examples and quotations you choose to use to support your argument. Check citations and include a full bibliography.
1. David Kerr has suggested that art can be used as ‘Tool, weapon or shield’ (in Jeyifo, 486). Critically analyse how and to what effect two African playwrights have used specific cultural forms to present and facilitate ideological debate.
2. Layiwola argues that “African performance studies and choreology recognize that the arena of dance is a ‘battlefront’ where the performer does not only confront the antagonist but also other related forces of margins and spaces.” Discuss this statement, with reference to two specific plays from the module.
3. Critically analyse how theatre in specific African contexts has been used to negotiate specific issues of identity and/ or colonial history? Analyse in relation to two specific plays.
4. Evaluate Ngugi wa Thiong’os analysis of how performance engages with enactments of power, and in particular ‘the struggle between the power of performance in the arts and the performance of power by the state’ (in Jeyifo, 434), with reference to one or two specific plays and their contexts.
4. Topic of your own, in discussion with me.