Module Information

Module Identifier
Module Title
Politics, Media and Performance: Making Connections
Academic Year
Semester 1
Other Staff

Course Delivery

Delivery Type Delivery length / details
Lecture Lecture-Seminars (i.e. seminars with some lecture content): 10 x 2 hours. 20 contact hours.
Seminars / Tutorials Research Seminars: 5 x 1 hours. 5 contact hours.


Assessment Type Assessment length / details Proportion
Semester Assessment Assessment 1: Written essay (3,000 words)  To analyse the role of media and performance theory/practice within a particular political event or context, or the role of the political within a particular example of creative expression (film, performance, documentary, exhibition etc) utilizing the theoretical frameworks and critical approaches studied  50%
Semester Exam 7 Hours   Assessment 2: Performed Lecture (15-20 minutes)  To analyse a political theme or media practice or genre introduced in the module through performative presentation (illustrated lecture, short video etc) demonstrating an understanding of the potential of the chosen format for the better exposition of the theme and its critique . (Note: This presentation will be videoed for scrutiny by the external examiner and departmental records.)   50%
Supplementary Assessment Resit Assessment 1:  Resit as written essay with alternative title   50%
Supplementary Assessment Resit Assessment 2:  Resit as performed lecture with alternative title (to be taken at next opportunity)  50%

Learning Outcomes

On successful completion of this module students should be able to:

1. to demonstrate an advanced critical awareness of the nature and application of a range of media
2. to demonstrate understanding at an advanced level the nature of the political as both critical trope and societal phenomenon.
3. to evaluate complex conceptual and practical relationships between different modes, understandings and genres of media and the political
4. to demonstrate a mastery of a range of theoretical and methodological approaches to the analysis of relationships between media and the political
5. to appreciate the potential of various media as both modes of enquiry and as platforms for the delivery of further research into political themes and subject matters.


Aims of the module:
a) to provide a secure grounding in key theories, critical approaches, methodologies, vocabularies and frameworks in the relevant fields: politics, media and performance.
b) to examine and enhance understanding of the forms, functions and roles of media and associated modes of cultural expression.
c) to examine and enhance understanding of the relevance of critical conceptualizations of the political.
d) to address and evaluate the form, function and potential of a range of media in the expression of ideas, analysis and ambitions, in both public and academic spheres.
e) to address and evaluate the role and impact of the political within processes of production, distribution and reception of the media.
f) to introduce and explore convergences – both extant and potential – between politics, media and performance.

Brief description

This module introduces a range of contemporary theories, conceptual frameworks and practical methodologies in the exploration of interdisciplinary approaches to the analysis of the convergences and interstices between politics, media and performance. Through the development of appropriate critical vocabularies, theoretical underpinnings and analysis of creative approaches, students are equipped to understand both the effects generated by the media within the political sphere and the significance of the political within modes of aesthetic and cultural production and expression. This will enable them to contribute constructively to current debates on the role of media within the contemporary world; prepare them for further scholarly enquiry in the convergent field and/or the explication of aspects of political subjects through the direct application and employment of media in practice-based expositions; and open space for further advanced critical thinking of the political.


Module content includes:
  • an introduction to the range and reach of a variety of media and theoretical, critical and analytical approaches appropriate to their understanding; also to the conceptual and methodological procedures involved in their making;
  • an introduction to theoretical and societal formulations of both the political and the political sphere within the contemporary world;
  • a joint examination of the role and potential of the creative within the political and the political within the creative.
  • The content will be co-taught by staff from both departments and may be adjusted to capitalize upon the specific expertise of those delivering the module. A fortnightly 'Research Seminar' will accompany the module, offering support for the precise requirements of the modular assessment assignments and examining ways in which specific modular material might inform the choice and development of a research methodology towards in particular the final research project/dissertation, which may be submitted in a practice-based or written form.
Lecture-Seminar Content:
1. The politics of performance and the performance of politics: critical practice, context and exposition
2. The political and the performative: in theory and practice
3. Media discourse: modes, meanings and events
4. Representations: conventions, locations and formations of identity
5. Political aesthetics/aesthetic politics: critique and creativity and in performance, film and media
6. Cultural production: history, epistemology and technique in performance, film and media
7. Critical methods and approaches: practice-based research, fieldwork, applied research
8. Subjectivity and political community: performance and politics
9. Difference, discrimination and the performance of borders
10. The international, the global and the postcolonial in performance, media and politics

Research Seminar Content:
1. Critical Reading Practices
2. Practice-led Research
3. Practices of Representation
4. Practices of Presentation
5. Preparing Assessments

Module Skills

Skills Type Skills details
Application of Number This element is not assessed.
Communication The ability to communicate ideas effectively is developed and assessed.
Improving own Learning and Performance Self-regulation, motivation and time-management skills are developed through the module and are demanded for the successful completion of its assignments.
Information Technology The ability to utilize information technology both in the research for and delivery of assignments is assessed directly.
Personal Development and Career planning Transferable skills (managing personal workloads and meeting deadlines, designing and realizing assessment projects) are developed and assessed directly
Problem solving Analytical problem solving, outcome recognition and the identification of appropriate strategies and procedures are encouraged and assessed.
Research skills Independent research and the development of effective personal research practices are encouraged and assessed.
Subject Specific Skills The ability to employ mediated means in the exposition of intellectual material within an academic context. The ability to employ a range of theoretical and methodological approaches to the analysis of relationships between media and the political
Team work Seminar discussions demand the application of skills necessary to conduct collaborative activity, such as negotiating ideas and opinions. Students work in collaboration with others on the formulation and implementation of practical research.

Reading List

Recommended Text
Agamben, Giorgio (2000) Means without End: Notes on Politics. Translated by Vincenzo and Cesare Casarino University of Minesota Press Primo search Bishop, Claire (2012) Artificial Hells: Participatory Art and the Politics of Spectatorship Verso Primo search Bishop, Clare (2000) Artificial Hells: Participatory Art and the Politics of Spectatorship University of Minnesota Press Primo search Bourriard, Nicholas (2009) Relational Aesthetics Dijon: Les Presse Du Reel Primo search Butler, Judith (1997) Excitable Speech: A Politics of the Performative Routledge Primo search Fanon, Frantz (1986) Black Skin, White Masks. Translated by Charles Lam Markmann Pluto Primo search Foucault, Michel (1980) Power/Knowledge: Selected Interviews and Writings 1972-1977 ed. Colin Gordon Truth an Power Brighton: Harvester Primo search Foucault, Michel (2000) The Essential Works of Foucault 1954-1984 edited by Paul Rabinow The Subject and Power Pgs 326-48 New York: he New Press Primo search Gray Carlson, David, Cornell, D and Rosenfeld, M (eds) (1992) Deconstruction and the Possibilty of Justice Jacques derrida 'Force of Law: The Mystical Foundation of Authority' Pgs. 3-67 New York: Routledge Primo search Hall, Stuart and du Gay, Paul (eds) (1996) Questions of Cultural Idetity Stuart Hall 'Introduction: Who Needs Identity?' Sage Primo search Jackson, Shannon (2011) Social Works: Performing Art, Supporting Publics Routledge Primo search Lehmann, Hans-Thies (2006) Postdramatic Theatre Routledge Primo search McKenzie, John (2001) Perform or else; from discipline to performance Routledge Primo search Nancy, Jean-Luc (1991) The Inoperative Community. translated by Peter Connor, Lisa Garbus, Michael Holland and Simona Sawhney Minnesota University Press Primo search Rancière, Jacques (2010) Dissensus: On Politics and Aesthetics. Translaed by Steven Corcoran Continuum Primo search Rancière, Jacques (2009) The Emancipated Spectator. Translated by Gregory Elliott Verso Primo search Rancière, Jacques (1991) The Ignorant Schoolmaster: Five Lessons in Intellectual Emancipation. Translated by Kristin Ross Stanford University Press Primo search Schneider, Rebecca (2011) Performing Remains: Art and War in the Times of Theatrical Reenactment Routledge Primo search Shohat, Ella and Stam, Robert (1994) Unthinking Eurocentrism: Multiculturalism and the Media Routledge Primo search Zizek, Slavoj (1991) Looking Awry: An Introduction to Jacques Lacan through Popular Culture. Edited by Joan Copjec, Rosalind Krauss and Annette Michelson MIT Press Primo search


This module is at CQFW Level 7