Comparative Literature | Drama: The Enigmatic Guest
C311 | 27531 | Prof. Angela Pao


Meets TR 11:15-12:30

A guest arrives and a drama is set in motion.   This is what happens
in tragedies, comedies, and other dramatic forms from ancient Greece
and Rome to modern Europe, America, Asia and Africa.  The guests may
be invited and welcome or else surprise visitors whose presence is
highly undesirable; they may be imposing on the hospitality of an
individual, a family or an entire city.  Regal or humble, beneficent
or malevolent, these guests and their hosts engage in ways that have
created some of the most stimulating and enjoyable dramas of world
literature.  We will examine the staging of the guest/host
relationship and its perversion in various theatrical and cultural
contexts.  The works we will be reading include: Sophocles (Oedipus
at Colonus, Philoctetes), Euripides (Medea), Shakespeare (King
Lear), Molière (Tartuffe), Racine (Andromache), Ibsen (Hedda
Gabler), Chekhov (The Seagull), Wilde (The Importance of Being
Earnest), Pirandello (Henry IV), Lorca (Blood Wedding),Brecht (The
Good Woman of Setzuan),  Mishima (Lady Aoi, Hanjo), Pinter (The
Birthday Party, The Room), Soyinka (Death and the King’s Horseman).
Assignments: one 5-6 page paper, one 7-8 page paper, a final exam.