World Drama and Playwriting (BA)

Webster CAS English Department 4The English Department's emphasis in World Drama and Playwriting is designed to give students a strong grounding in our rich legacy of dramatic literature from the Greeks to the present day. From the Oresteia to Hamlet and to Angels in America, students in the emphasis read masterworks in every major period of dramatic literature. Survey courses like Global Dramatic Literature give students the big picture, drawing links between writers, ideas, and important periods. More narrowly focused courses like Tragic Themes, Modern Drama, Contemporary Drama, and Shakespeare I & II help students become better acquainted with specific authors, themes, or periods.

It all begins with the written word. Our dramatic literature classes are designed to engage and involve students as active readers and scholars. We view plays as performance texts, and as such we must read as actors, designers, writers, and critics. The emphasis in World Drama and Playwriting is designed to give students the necessary literary background and analytical skills they will need as teachers, writers, scholars, and theatre professionals.

Several of our graduates have gone on to work professionally for theatres as literary managers or dramaturges. A number have gone on to graduate schools such as the University of Southern California, the University of New Mexico, and Columbia University.

In addition to the learning outcomes for all English majors, students who complete the emphasis in World Drama and Playwriting will be able to:

• Understand and interpret major works of dramatic literature from the ancient to the contemporary eras within and across historical and cultural contexts.

• Describe and analyze the changing role of the playwright in the collaborative process of creating and producing dramatic works throughout the ages.

• Demonstrate the ability to put theory into practice in creating original dramatic work.

For more detailed degree emphasis requirements, see the undergraduate catalog.