Study Abroad and Exchanges

Modules

Modules

CAC3052 : Foundations of European Drama: Tragedy in Greece and Rome (Inactive)

Semesters
Semester 1 Credit Value: 20
ECTS Credits: 10.0

Aims

“Passion plays”
Revenge, forbidden love, murder, incest, rape and the odd sinister ghost... The tragedies of classical Greece and Rome combine full-blooded exploration of extremes of human experience with intense poetry and also polished rhetorical moralising. These plays laid the foundations for almost all serious drama in the Western literary tradition. But what did classical tragedy in its original forms involve, and how did it relate to its original contexts? Why has it had such an impact on the way European theatre developed? This module looks in depth at representative plays by the Greek dramatists Euripides and Sophocles and the Roman dramatist Seneca, at the differing role and nature of tragedy within 5th-century Athenian and 1st century A.D. Roman society, and at the connections and comparison between the Greek and Roman dramatists, considering also the influence of both on the development of later European drama.

This module aims:
• To further develop students' skills in critical analysis and appreciation of literary texts, and particularly of dramaturgical qualities and questions.
• To provide the opportunity to explore and to develop the skills of comparison and analysis involved in evaluating, the early theatrical history of western European Culture, and the influence of that early history on the later development of European dramatic literature.
• To advance students' understanding of the relationship between literary works and their socio-cultural context (specifically, in classical Greece and Rome), and their skills in exploring and analysing the various ways in which this relationship can work.
• To develop students' initiative and adaptability in undertaking additional independent reading and applying approaches and skills imparted in the module to this for themselves.

Outline Of Syllabus

The module looks in depth at representative plays by the Greek dramatists Euripides and Sophocles and the Roman dramatist Seneca, at the differing role and nature of tragedy within 5th century Athenian and 1st century A.D. Roman society, and at the connections and comparison between the Greek and Roamn dramatists, with some opportunity to consider the influence of both on the development of later European drama.
Texts covered:
Euripides, Hippolytus and Seneca Phaedra (with some consideration of Racine's Phedre)
Sophocles, Oedipus Tyrannus and Seneca Oedipus (with some consideration of John Dryden's Oedipus)
Euripides, Ion (with some consideration of T.S. Elliot, The Confidential Clark)
Seneca, Thyestes.
In addition, Stage 3 students apply the skills and approaches encountered in this module to at least 1 of 4 plays outside the taught syllabus.

Teaching Methods

Teaching Activities
Category Activity Number Length Student Hours Comment
Guided Independent StudyAssessment preparation and completion541:0054:001/3 of guided independent study
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesLecture281:0028:00N/A
Guided Independent StudyDirected research and reading551:0055:001/3 of guided independent study
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesSmall group teaching61:006:00Seminars and 'drama in action' sessions.
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesWorkshops12:002:00Workshop on texts studied independently.
Guided Independent StudyIndependent study551:0055:001/3 of guided independent study
Total200:00
Teaching Rationale And Relationship

The lectures (i) introduce overall topics, issues and themes involved in the study of Greek and Roman tragedy and its influence, demonstrating how these apply to the specific plays studied; (ii) look in more detail at aspects of particular plays by the authors involved, illustrating methods, approaches and analytical skills which can be used in assessing these works, their relationship to their socio-cultural context, the connections between them and the influence which their authors had on later European drama.

Students develop skills in tackling these aspects for themselves by (i) preparing relevant tasks for group-work within selected lectures throughout the course; (ii) preparing to participate in more extended discussions in seminars, including the preparation of one short oral presentation; (iii) on the basis of the knowledge, skills and approaches obtained in lectures and seminars, reading at least one text not covered in the taught syllabus and preparing to discuss this text in the assignment.

Seminars provide students with an opportunity to participate in discussion and thus to improve their oral
communication skills.

Assessment Methods

The format of resits will be determined by the Board of Examiners

Exams
Description Length Semester When Set Percentage Comment
Written Examination1201A60N/A
Exam Pairings
Module Code Module Title Semester Comment
2N/A
Other Assessment
Description Semester When Set Percentage Comment
Essay1M401,500 words
Assessment Rationale And Relationship

The assignment assesses students’ ability to apply their knowledge of, and skills in analysing, key characteristics of Senecan and Euripidean dramatic writing, within a task that requires them to analyse dramatic technique in passages both from the set texts and from one of 2 further plays by Seneca not covered by the taught syllabus (Medea or Troades plays).
This task is designed to test Stage 3 students’ ability to apply what they learn in the module more independently, to texts beyond the set syllabus of the module, and to carry out the extra independent research necessary for this.

The examination comprises:
(a)       1 ‘comparative gobbet’ question requiring students to discuss one pair of passages from:
      Hippolytus and Phaedra or Oedipus Tyrannus and Oedipus (50%)
(b)       1 essay question on either the comparison/relationship between Greek and Roman tragedy or the relationship of Greek and Roman tragedy to later European drama (50%);
Rubric: students are expected to show knowledge of at least 5 different Greek and Roman plays in the examination.
Section (a) assesses students’ ability to apply to particular comparative examples their knowledge of, and skills in assessing and comparing, both the distinct characteristics of Greek and Roman tragic drama and the different ways in which these authors handled the elements they have in common.
The essay (b) assesses students’ knowledge, and ability to present a concise analytical discussion, of broader key topics or issues covered in the module; it gives students the opportunity to demonstrate knowledge of and analytical skills involved in assessing the influence of Greek and Roman drama on the later tradition.

Submitted work tests intended knowledge and skills outcomes, develops key skills in research, reading and writing.

All Erasmus students at Newcastle University are expected to do the same assessment as students registered for a degree.
Study-abroad, non-Erasmus exchange and Loyola students spending semester 1 only are required to finish their assessment while in Newcastle. This will take the form of an alternative assessment, as outlined in the formats below:

Modules assessed by Coursework and Exam:
The normal alternative form of assessment for all semester 1 non-EU study abroad students will be one essay in addition to the other coursework assessment (the length of the essay should be adjusted in order to comply with the assessment tariff); to be submitted no later than 12pm Friday of week 12. The essays should be set so as to assure coverage of the course content to date.

Modules assessed by Exam only:
The normal alternative form of assessment for all semester 1 non-EU study abroad students will be two 2,000 word written exercises; to be submitted no later than 12pm Friday of week 12. The essays should be set so as to assure coverage of the course content to date.

Modules assessed by Coursework only:
All semester 1 non-EU study abroad students will be expected to complete the standard assessment for the module; to be submitted no later than 12pm Friday of week 12. The essays should be set so as to assure coverage of the course content to date.
Study-abroad, non-Erasmus exchange and Loyola students spending the whole academic year or semester 2 are required to complete the standard assessment as set out in the MOF under all circumstances.

Reading Lists

Timetable