609792 British and/or Postcolonial Literature: High and Low Comedy in Victorian and Modern Times

winter semester 2018/2019 | Last update: 04.08.2021 Place course on memo list
609792
British and/or Postcolonial Literature: High and Low Comedy in Victorian and Modern Times
PS 2
2,5
weekly
each semester
English

The aim of this course is to familiarise students with key concepts of theatre studies for the analysis of plays.

 

In 1671 the dramatist and critic John Dryden wrote of his “disgust of low comedy,“ observing that it required “on the writer’s part, much of conversation with the vulgar, and much of ill nature in the observation of their follies.” This course teaches students to critically read high and low comedy from the Victorian era by scrutinizing why characters and settings were then considered necessarily ‘low’ in contrast to high comedy/the comedy of manners focussing on the war of wits between the sexes (Oscar Wilde, John Millington Synge, George Bernard Shaw, Dion Boucicault, William Wycherly, George Farquhar, Richard Brinsley Sheridan William Congreve). We will also analyse modern versions of high comedy including the TV series Fawlty Towers, Yes Minister/Yes Prime Minister, and Seinfeld, Tom Stoppard’s Jumpers, spoof spy movies (James Bond/007 films and Michel Hazanavicius’s films OSS 117: Cairo, Nest of Spies).

 

lecture, group discussions, presentations

 

regular attendance, class participation, reading assignments, presentation, term paper

Attendance in the first session is mandatory. (!!)

Charney, M. Comedy High and Low: An Introduction to the Experience of Comedy. Peter Lang, 2005.
Delaney, P., ed. Tom Stoppard in Conversation. Michigan UP, 1994.
Kuipers, G. Good Humour, Bad Taste. A Sociology of the Joke. Walter deGruyter, 2006.
Meredith, G. An Essay on Comedy: And the Uses of Comic Spirit. Scribner, 1910.
Tierney, M. “The New Menander and the Origins of High Comedy”. Studies: An Irish
Quaterly Review, vol. 19, no. 74, 1930, pp. 295-308.
Waters, Hazel. Racism on the Victorian Stage: Representation of Slavery and the
Black Character. Cambridge UP, 2007.
Jenkins, Anthony. The Making of Victorian Drama. Cambridge UP, 1991.
Powell, Kerry, ed. The Cambridge Companion to Victorian and Edwardian Theatre. Cambridge Companions to Literature. Cambridge UP, 2000.

BA 2015: positive completion of compulsory module 10

BA 2009: positive completion of compulsory module 16

Teacher Training Programme BA 2015: positive completion of compulsory module 13

 

not applicable

Due to substantial differences in the allocation of ECTS-Credits in various curricula (teacher training program - BA/MA English and American Studies), the requirements for this course vary. Information will be provided by the instructor at the beginning of the course.

03.10.2018
Group 0
Date Time Location
Wed 2018-10-03
15.30 - 17.00 40134 40134 Barrier-free
Wed 2018-10-10
15.30 - 17.00 40134 40134 Barrier-free
Wed 2018-10-17
15.30 - 17.00 40134 40134 Barrier-free
Wed 2018-10-24
15.30 - 17.00 40134 40134 Barrier-free
Wed 2018-10-31
15.30 - 17.00 40134 40134 Barrier-free
Wed 2018-11-07
15.30 - 17.00 40134 40134 Barrier-free
Wed 2018-11-14
15.30 - 17.00 40134 40134 Barrier-free
Wed 2018-11-21
15.30 - 17.00 40134 40134 Barrier-free
Wed 2018-11-28
15.30 - 17.00 40134 40134 Barrier-free
Wed 2018-12-05
15.30 - 17.00 40134 40134 Barrier-free
Wed 2018-12-12
15.30 - 17.00 40134 40134 Barrier-free
Wed 2019-01-09
15.30 - 17.00 40134 40134 Barrier-free
Wed 2019-01-16
15.30 - 17.00 40134 40134 Barrier-free
Wed 2019-01-23
15.30 - 17.00 40134 40134 Barrier-free
Wed 2019-01-30
15.30 - 17.00 40134 40134 Barrier-free