Module Identifier EN36220  
Academic Year 2000/2001  
Co-ordinator Dr Paulina Kewes  
Semester Semester 2  
Course delivery Seminar   20 Hours 10 x 2 hr workshop/seminars  
Assessment Continuous assessment   2 essays (2,500 words each)   100%  
  Resit assessment   Resubmit any failed elements and/or make good any missing elements.    

Brief description
This module will look at eight tragedies over the course of nearly a century, spanning the reign of four monarchs, from Elizabeth I to Charles II. These tragedies dramatise episodes and figures from the history of ancient Rome. We shall explore their engagement with the ideological, cultural and political debates of the day. The plays will be considered in their historical contexts, and the connections and parallels they set up between past and present will be examined.

Outline syllabus

Recommended editions are: for Julius Caesar the New Arden, New Cambridge or New Oxford series; Jonson's Sejanus (Manchester UP); Lee's Lucius Junius Brutus and Addison's Cato (Regents Restoration Drama Series (U of Nebraska P) distributed in the UK by Edward Arnold); the Marlowe-Nash Dido can be found in Marlowe's Complete Plays (Penguin); Massinger's The Roman Actor in his Selected Plays (CUP). Heywood's The Rape of Lucrece and Chapman's Caesar and Pompey will be provided in photocopy.
Background Reading:
Bushnell, Rebecca W., Tragedies of Tyrants: Political Thought and Theatre in the English Renaissance (1990)
Dollimore, Jonathan, Radical Tragedy (1984)
Edwards, Catherine, Writing Rome: Textual Approaches to the City (1996)
Lever, W.W., The Tragedy of State (1971, repr. 1987)
Miola, Robert S., Shakespeare's Rome
Orgel, Stephen, The Illusion of Power: Political Theatre in the English Renaissance (91987)
Ronan, Clifford, 'Antike roman': Power Symbology and the Roman Play in Early Modern England, 1585-1635 (1995)
Tricomi, Albert H., Anti-Court Drama in England, 1603-1642 (1989)

Module objectives / Learning outcomes
This module aims to:
broaden the students' knowledge of early-modern drama, especially tragedy;
to encourage them to read early-modern plays in context and consider their political and ideological significance;
by focussing on episodes drawn from the history of ancient Rome to encourage students to reconstruct the way in which history was used to comment on the present;
to make students sensitive to strategies of evasion and allegory used by authors working in conditions of censorship and heavy government control.

On completion of this module students should be able to:
demonstrate that they have acquired a knowledge and understanding of the primary texts on the module and a critical awareness of the broader issues raised by the module;
discuss the texts and their various contexts coherently and
write about them in a well-structured and well-argued way.

Reading Lists
** Recommended Text
Stephen Orgel. (1987) The Illusion of Power: Politcal Theatre in the English Renaissance.
** Recommended Background
Rebecca W Bushnell. (1990) Tragedies of Tyrants: Political Thought and Theater in the English Renaissance.
Jonathan Dollimore. (1984) Radical Tragedy.
Catherine Edwards. (1996) Writing Rome: Textual Approaches to the City.
Albert H Tricomi. (1989) Anti-Court Drama in England, 1603-1642.
Clifford Ronan. (1995) 'Antike Roman': Power Symbology and the Roman Play in Early Modern England 1585-1635.
J.W. Lever. (1971/1987) The Tragedy of State.
Robert S Miola. Shakespeare's Rome.