Tudor Grammar Schools: Drama Education & The Real World Stage

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Tudor Grammar Schools: Drama Education & The Real World Stage
45th Annual Convention, Northeast Modern Language Association (NeMLA)
April 3-6, 2014
Harrisburg, Pennsylvania
Host: Susquehanna University

Tudor Grammar schools put dramatic training at the center of their curriculum. A first and abiding question for this seminar: Why?

Was the study of ancient drama (e.g. Terence) a generative operation, in which schoolboys would adapt the values and manners of the patrician Romans featured in the original drama? Or was the drama central to the curriculum because the living out of conflict and intrigue, via a fictional construct, was considered sound training for the uncertainties of governing positions? Was study of drama in the schools a method of gender conditioning, and if so, what behavior was thus engendered? Did study and performance of theater during their school days play a decisive role in the playwrighting of Nicholas Udall, Thomas Kyd, Christopher Marlowe, William Shakespeare? Does early Tudor school drama, such as Play of the Weather (1529) and Wit and Science (1539) evince different shaping aims on schoolboys? Does Tudor school drama, both as classroom study and live performance, evolve in its educational purposes during the Tudor period?

Any of the questions are welcome as subjects for seminar presentation.

Deadline: September 30, 2013
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