Theatre Arts 275

The Seeds of Modern Drama

Professor Mazer

Fall 2014


519 Annenberg Center, 3-2659;

Office Hours:  Tuesdays and Thursdays, 1:30-2:30, and by appointment



August 28:  Introduction


September 2:  Alexandre Dumas, fils, The Lady of the Camelias (Camille) (Canvas)


September 4:  Emile Zola, ThérŹse Raquin (in Norris Houghton, The Seeds of Modern Drama);  “Naturalism in the Theatre” (Canvas)


September 9:  Henrik Ibsen, A Doll House


September 11:  A Doll House (cont.); G. Bernard Shaw, “Ideals and Idealists” and “The Technical Novelty of Ibsen’s Plays,” from The Quintessence of Ibsenism (Canvas)


September 16:  Ibsen, The Wild Duck


September 18:  Ibsen, The Master Builder


September 23:  Gerhart Hauptmann, The Weavers (in Houghton)


[September 25:  NO CLASS]


September 30:  August Strindberg, Miss Julie (including the Preface).


October 2:  Miss Julie (cont.); Una Chaudhuri, “Private Parts:  Sex, Class, and Stage Space in Miss Julie” (Canvas)


[Approximate due date:  first take-home assignment] 


October 7:  Ibsen, Peer Gynt


[Fall Break]


October 14:  Georg Büchner, Woyzeck


October 16:  Frank Wedekind, Spring Awakening


October 21:  Strindberg, A Dream Play


October 23:  Anton Chekhov, Uncle Vanya


October 28:  Unclw Vanya (cont.)


October 30:  The Cherry Orchard (cont.)


November 4:  The Cherry Orchard (cont.)


[Approximate due date:  second take-home assignment]


November 6:  G. Bernard Shaw, Mrs. Warren’s Profession (including “The Author’s Apology,” Canvas; also available for free on Kindle.)


November 11:  Shaw, Major Barbara (including the Preface).


November 13:  Major Barbara (cont.); Sidney P. Albert, “‘In More Ways than One’:  Major Barbara’s debt to Gilbert Murray” (Canvas).


November 18:  H. Granville Barker, The Voysey Inheritance (Canvas)


November 20:  TO BE ANNOUNCED.


November 25:  The Voysey Inheritance (cont.)




December 2:  Elizabeth Robins, Votes for Women!  (Canvas)


December 4: John Millington Synge, Playboy of the Western World (Canvas; also available for free on Kindle.)


December 9:  Catch-up and conclusions.



There will be TWO take-home essay assignments (approximately 5 pages), plus ONE final paper (approximately 10-12 pages), due at a date to be announced during reading and exam period, on a topic that must MUST BE APPROVED IN ADVANCE.  Attendance in class is crucial; CHRONIC ABSENCE OR LATENESS WILL BE COUNTED AGAINST YOU.


The following books can be purchased at the Penn Book Center, 34th and Sansom Sts.:


Henrik Ibsen, Four Major Plays v. I

August Strindberg, Miss Julie and Other Plays

Henrik Ibsen, Peer Gynt

Georg Büchner, Complete Plays

Frank Wedekind, Spring Awakening

Anton Chekhov, Four Plays & Three Jokes

G. Bernard Shaw, Major Barbara


The listserv for this course is  Several electronic scripts and articles are available on the Canvas website, to which you have been automatically subscribed.


The syllabus for this course is available at  Make a bookmark on your web browser for this site.