This time around we will concentrate on the drama and pageantry of the Middle Ages. Beginning with a brief survey of the beginnings of medieval drama, we will read plays of many types (most of them short), performed under a variety of conditions: fixed-stage plays, processional plays, indoor plays, outdoor plays-in-the-round.

To enrich our understanding of these plays, we will study the references to medieval drama in prose and poetry (e.g., Chaucer), some source material available to playwrights in the Middle Ages (both written and visual), the drama being produced on the Continent, and the many proto- or quasi-dramatic events (maying, royal entries, puppet shows, etc.) that provided a rich background for the playing of plays in medieval England.

The course will involve dramatic play-reading in class, oral reports, the gathering of on-line resources from the World Wide Web, a paper, and a final exam. If students wish to produce a play near the end of the semester, these requirements may be revised.

Week 1 (beginning 13 January):

Note: the introductions are always part of the reading assignment, as are the relevant stories from the Bible.

Week 2 (beginning 20 January):

Week 3 (beginning 27 January):

Week 4 (beginning 3 February):

Week 5 (beginning 10 February):

Week 6 (beginning 17 February):

Think about the differences and possible reasons for them before you come to class.

Week 7 (beginning 24 February):

Week 8 (beginning 3 March):

Week 9 (beginning 17 March):

Week 10 (beginning 24 March):

Week 11 (beginning 31 March):

Week 12 (beginning 7 April):

Week 13 (beginning 14 April):

Week 14 (beginning 21 April):

Week 15 (beginning 28 April):

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Rev 4/97