English and drama

Issues and Perspectives in Contemporary Performance

Module code: Q3262
Level 6
30 credits in autumn teaching
Teaching method: Lecture, Seminar
Assessment modes: Coursework

This module enables you to deepen your understanding of performance as a way of thinking and the implications of theory for performance. You will engage with three distinct fields of study that address, explore and interrogate important aspects of contemporary performance. The module is taught in three distinct three-week sections, one for each field of study. They are diverse topics that will expand your understanding of issues and questions relevant to contemporary practices in and/or theoretical approaches to theatre, theatre-making and performance. The module will expose you to perspectives and ideas at a more advanced-level and engage you with areas of staff research specialism. Due to the concentrated nature of the three-week sessions, teaching will focus on particular examples taken from the field of study under discussion that will, in turn, expose larger issues and questions. We will negotiate fields of study that address ethical, political, social and aesthetic issues surrounding ongoing debates in modern and contemporary theatre.

The module deals with advanced material. Yet while the content of the module will develop your understanding of and relationships to contemporary theatre and performance, the methods through which the material have been processed will also form a part of the teaching, so that you will be introduced to varieties of research methodologies, as well. While you will be assessed on the material taught, you are encouraged to take up and develop particular aspects suggested by the module, in terms of subject matter and research approaches to subject matter, in the independent research project module in the following term.

Module learning outcomes

  • Identify key issues in the given specialist area, explain and evaluate their relationship to contemporary performance in theory and/or practice
  • Analyse theories considered in previous modules and reflectively apply them to issues in the specialist areas
  • Critically evaluate the key issues in any given specialist area