SYLLABUS

Thurs. Sept. 7:  Opening Class
Why do humans (and others) "perform"? What are theatres? And how do/should/can we limit the terrain of the "theatrical" in relationship to something that might be termed "reality"? Is "theatre theory" a redundancy? The English word “theory” comes from the Greek “theoria,” meaning contemplation, speculation, or sight. It is related to the word “theatron,” or place for viewing – the theater. Theater and theory are kin. Is this the case around the world? What happens to theatre over time? What can we know of prehistoric practices, let alone ancient or medieval. What of performance remains? And, is theatre itself a time machine? We will ask the essential question: Why learn about theatre history and historical theatricality? And what do dance, music, visual art and architecture have to do with what we will be studying this semester?


Section 1: Orienting Questions to "Prehistory" and "Origins"
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Tues. Sept. 12: What is Performance?
Suzan-Lori Parks, The America Play and short remarks by Parks on her style
Also, a brief essay by Shonni Enelow on contemporary film acting styles
Recommended: two essays from American Theatre magazine
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Thurs. Sept. 14: Performance in/as Culture: The Cockfight
Clifford Geertz, selection from The Interpretation of Cultures
John Emigh, selection from The Cambridge Companion to Performance Studies
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Tues. Sept. 19: Counter-Mimicry, or Performance Across Cultures 
Wole Soyinka, Death and the King’s Horseman
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Thurs. Sept. 21:  Are There Performance Universals?  What is at stake in some efforts to find universals and what might be some problems with or promises in such efforts? 
Eugenio Barba, Dictionary of Theatre Anthropology
A play from the canon of Japanese Noh Theatre: Dojoji
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Thues. Sept. 26: Prehistory, Performance, and “Origin Rituals” 
Watch:  The Werner Herzog film Cave of Forgotten Dreams  through OCRA
An outmoded 1959 theatre history textbook Living Theatre, selection
a brief selection from Martin Bernal Black Athena
Richard Schechner, selection from Performance Theory
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Thurs. Sept. 28:   Masks, Ancestors, "Primitivity" – Possession vs. Representation
Jean Clottes and David Lewis-Williams, The Shamans of Prehistory, selection
Selection from John Emigh Masked Performance
Chief Robert Joseph, "Behind the Mask," Down from the Shimmering Sky 
Cara McCarty, "Offense/Defense" in Masks: Faces of Culture
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Tues, Oct. 3: Performance and Economy
David Kertzer, “The Superbowl’s Strange Tribe” 
Maurya Wickstrom on The Lion King 
Karl Marx, "The Secret of Commodities" 
GROUP ONE TO PERFORM
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Section 2: The Ancient Mediterranean
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Thurs. Oct. 5:  Ancient Mediterranean Africa
Ronald J. Leprohon, "Ritual Drama in Ancient Egypt."
 The Triumph of Horus
Jan Assmann, Death and Salvation in Ancient Egypt, selection

Guest visit by Kenneth Molloy 
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Tues. Oct. 10:   The Theatre of Dionysus
Euripides, The Bakkhai
David Wiles, Greek Theater Performance, chapters 1 and 2.
(Be sure to note the assignment ) 
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Thurs. Oct. 12: Greek Comedy
Aristophanes, Thesmophoriazusae 
Wiles, chapters 3 and 4, and Sue-Ellen Case on "Classic Drag"
GROUP THREE TO PERFORM
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Tues. Oct. 17: Plato and Aristotle on Mimesis
Plato, The Republic: Books 7 and 10.
Plato, Ion (excerpt on OCRA)
Aristotle,  The Poetics of Aristotle
Wiles, chapter 5.
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Thurs. Oct. 19:  Multiple Medeas
Euripides Medea
Seneca Medea
GROUP FOUR TO PERFORM 
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Tues. Oct. 24:  Roman Empire 
A. M. Nagler, Sourcebook in Theatrical History
Odai Johnson, "Unspeakable Histories: Terror, Spectacle, and Genocidal Memory"
Plautus, The Captives
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Thurs, Oct. 26: MIDTERM EXAM

Midterm study sheet now posted!! 
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Section 3: South Asia 
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Tues. Oct. 31:    The Performative Bases of Ancient Indian Theatre and Dance
Bharat-Muni, selections from the Natyasatra
John Emigh, Summary Notes on Bhava and Rasa
Sreenath Nair, "Introduction: The Natyashastra and the Body in the Natyasastra"
Daniel Meyer-Dikgrafe, "Indian Theatre Aesthetics" in Theatre and Consciousness
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Thurs. Nov. 2: Kuttiyattam and Kathakali
Reread Natyasastra from the last class.
Suresh Awasthi, “The Temple as Theatre”
Phillip B. Zarrilli, Kathakali: Dance-Drama
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Tues. Nov. 7: Kalidasa's Sakuntala
Kalidasa, Sakuntala in Theater for Memory
Barbara Stoler Miller, Theater of Memory, selection
GROUP FIVE TO PERFORM
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Section 4: Africa
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Thurs. Nov. 9:  Performance Legacies of Pre-Colonial Africa 1  
Kole Omotoso, "Concepts of History and Theatre in Africa"
Wole Soyinka, "The Fourth Stage" in Art, Dialogue, and Outrage. 
Margaret Thompson Drewal, Yoruba Ritual, selection
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Tues. Nov. 14: Performance Legacies of Pre-Colonial Africa 2
Malidoma Patrice Some, Ritual: Power, Healing, Community, selection.
N'gugi wa Thiongo, "Enactments of Power: The Politics of Performance Space."    
David Kerr, African Popular Theatre, selection 
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 Thursday. Nov 16:  African Performance in Global Perspective
Visit from Professor Jasmine Johnson
Reading TBA. 
GROUP SIX TO PERFORM
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Section 5: Medieval Europe and the "New" World 
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Tues. Nov. 21:  Holy Roman Empire
Saint Augustine and Tertullian
Quem Quertis and Hrosvit 
John Spaulding Gatton, "There Must Be Blood" 
Andrew Sofer, The Stage Life of Props 
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Tues. Nov. 28: Carnival, Mumming, Farce 
The Farce of the Fart
A Christmas Mumming, The Play of St. George
Mikail Bahktin, "On Popular Festive Forms"in Rabelais and His World

Final paper option proposal due. 
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Thurs. Nov. 30:  Corpus Christi and the Inka
Carolyn Dean, Inka Bodies and the Body of Christ
Moltolina, History of the Indians of New Spain
Grads: Leo Cabranes Grant, "From Scenarios to Networks"
GROUP SIX TO PERFORM
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Tues. Dec. 5: Old World New World "Visions"
Shakespeare, The Tempest and Black Elk Speaks
Grads, "This Thing of Darkness I Acknowledge Mine"
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December 12:  Final Exam, 10:30 in 007 Lyman Hall.
Study sheet will be made available one week in advance.
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