Module and Programme Catalogue

Search site

Find information on

2019/20 Undergraduate Module Catalogue

ENGL2050 Theatre, Society and Self

20 creditsClass Size: 40

Module manager: Dr Sarah Bartley

Taught: Semester 2 (Jan to Jun) View Timetable

Year running 2019/20

Module replaces

ENGL2019 Theatre, Society and Self

This module is not approved as a discovery module


On completion of this module, students should be able to:
- Have an appreciation of the arc from the personal, to the community to the political in relation to socially committed performance;
- Understand and be able to apply a range of strategies for making socially engaged theatre;
- Demonstrate an understanding of how historical, political and cultural context has effected the making of this work;
- Demonstrate an understanding of how different ways of working collectively and individually influence the form and aesthetic of theatre;

Learning outcomes
Students will have developed:
- the ability to use written and oral communication effectively;
- the capacity to analyse and critically examine diverse forms of discourse;
- the ability to manage quantities of complex information in a structured and systematic way;
- the capacity for independent thought and judgement;
- critical reasoning;
- research skills, including the retrieval of information, the organisation of material and the evaluation of its importance;
- IT skills;
- efficient time management and organisation skills;
- the ability to learn independently.

Skills outcomes
Skills for effective communication, oral and written.
Capacity to analyse and critically examine diverse forms of discourse.
Ability to acquire quantities of complex information of diverse kinds in a structured and systematic way.
Ability to develop and carry through a project of relatively independent work.
Capacity for independent thought and judgement.
Critical reasoning.
Research skills, including information retrieval skills, the organisation of material, and the evaluation of its importance.
IT skills.
Time management and organisational skills.
Independent learning.
Ability to communicate in a variety of oral and performance media.
Creative and imaginative skills as shown through the realisation of practical research projects.
An understanding of group dynamics and an ability to implement this understanding in a variety of contexts.
The ability to negotiate and pursue goals with others.


This module will examine a range of theatre forms that have social and political concerns or objectives. We will look at the work of selected practitioners interested in communicating ideas and achieving resonance - perhaps instigating change - through performance.

Thus, we will be looking beyond an ‘art for art’s sake’ agenda at practitioners, theoreticians, directors and playwrights who have had an interest in communicating and influencing ideas and issues through their theatre.

Beginning with a consideration of distinctions between conventional Aristotelian drama and the more explicitly political theatre methods of Brecht and Boal, we will look at some of the roots of contemporary ‘political’ and ‘applied’ theatre – and debate these categorisations with reference to a wide range of international theatre and performance practices. An exploration of audience, spectatorship and participation forms the foundation for our studies.

Teaching methods

Due to COVID-19, teaching and assessment activities are being kept under review - see module enrolment pages for information

Delivery typeNumberLength hoursStudent hours
Private study hours170.00
Total Contact hours30.00
Total hours (100hr per 10 credits)200.00

Private study

5 hours reading per week (50 hours)
5 hours workshop preparation per week (50 hours)
70 hours research and essay preparation (70 hours)

Opportunities for Formative Feedback

- Feedback on first assessed essay
- Participation in workshops

Methods of assessment

Due to COVID-19, teaching and assessment activities are being kept under review - see module enrolment pages for information

Assessment typeNotes% of formal assessment
Essay1,700 words including quotations and footnotes30.00
ProjectA Performance "blueprint" in paper or digital form with a supporting contextualization of 1,500 words including quotations and footnotes70.00
Total percentage (Assessment Coursework)100.00

Normally resits will be assessed by the same methodology as the first attempt, unless otherwise stated

Reading list

The reading list is available from the Library website

Last updated: 21/08/2019


Browse Other Catalogues

Errors, omissions, failed links etc should be notified to the Catalogue Team.PROD

© Copyright Leeds 2019