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Course content

This pioneering MA offers interdisciplinary perspectives on international performance, and aims to understand performance in relation to the culture to which it contributes.

The Masters takes in diverse forms of theatre, including multicultural and street theatre, and such practices as:

  • performance art
  • dance
  • ritual
  • site-specific performance
  • a wide range of hybrid forms

It leads you to explore performance as sociocultural process by using analytical principles from sociology, the sociology of culture, cultural theory, anthropology, history, philosophy, politics and theatre and performance.

We have numerous links, locally and internationally, with a wide variety of theatres, companies and performers, all of which enhance your research possibilities.

Modules & structure

There are three compulsory core modules which focus on a range of issues concerning performance as a sociocultural practice. They involve:

  • conceptual and theoretical material, their interweave and their relationship to performance
  • historiographical methodologies and textual issues
  • analysis of live performances
  • cultural difference, ethnicity and cross-culturalism
  • questions to do with corporeality, alternative spaces and performance in terms of social inclusivity

A choice of options or independent study constitutes the fourth component, and a dissertation on your individual research completes your programme of study.

Core modules

The three core modules consist of:

  • Cultural Theory, Performance, Interdisciplinary Perspectives: This module is an introduction to the whole programme and focuses on the interdisciplinary use of a range of theories from sociology, anthropology, theatre and other areas to understand live performance. As part of this module you are expected to see as many performances as possible.
  • Historicising Theatre: This module is concerned with exploring the problems and possibilities of theatre history, and the relationship between theatre, text and cultural context.
  • Corporeality, Embodiment, Alternative Spaces: This module includes work on rituals, shamanism, dance, hybrid forms, site-specific, multi-ethnic performance and theatres of exclusion.

Assessment

Each compulsory module and the option module carry equal weight, each representing 15% of the overall mark. The dissertation is worth 40%.

Skills

You will develop writing and oral skills at a high academic level, demonstrating the ability to think and work in an interdisciplinary manner using a range of methodologies. your ability to work collaboratively and to facilitate and participate in group discussions will be enhanced.

You will also develop skills in identifying the socio-cultural, historical and political issues and pressures specific to varied types of performance.

Careers

This programme provides a strong grounding in the principles of research and of learning through independent research. It is particularly suitable if you wish to pursue further academic work in creative, performative fields.

Find out more about employability at Goldsmiths.


Visit the Performance and Culture: Interdisciplinary Perspectives - MA page on the Goldsmiths, University of London website for more details!

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