Fall 2023

War and Theater

Listed in: Theater and Dance, as THDA-277


SEVAN Tavoukdjian (Section 01)


How does war look through the eyes of playwrights?  For millennia, playwrights have responded to the world around them, and never with more criticism and empathy than during wartime. Risking exile, imprisonment, or execution, playwrights have spoken out against the self-serving interests of governments and colonial imperialists as a way to right moral and ethical wrongs. What does it mean to create art when your world is burning down around you? How do you rebuild out of the rubble and ashes once the smoke clears? In this course students will read a selection of war plays, as well as contextual readings, that ask us to consider the human truths and experience of war. A natural addition will be the examination of post-colonial perspectives within these dramatic works. Course readings will be plays that range from classical Greek and avant-garde German plays to American melodrama and riot plays of West and East Asia. The question driving us: What new perspectives can war-theater offer today while asking us to consider what could come next? This course teaches the fundamental skills of close reading, dramatic analysis, beginning dramaturgy, deep discussion, and thoughtful writing.

Limited to 22 students. Fall semester. Professor SEVAN.

Pending Faculty Approval

How to handle overenrollment: Preference will go to theater and dance majors, first-years, sophomores, and students taking their first course in dramatic literature.

Students who enroll in this course will likely encounter and be expected to engage in the following intellectual skills, modes of learning, and assessment: This course will involve regular attendance and class participation, class discussion, regular reading, close reading, possible viewing assignments, and writing assignments.

THDA 277 - LEC

Section 01
M 12:30 PM - 1:50 PM WEBS G019
W 12:30 PM - 1:50 PM WEBS G019


Other years: Offered in Fall 2023