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Analysing Plays in the Twenty-First Century: A Critical Conversation

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Analysing Plays in the Twenty-First Century: A Critical Conversation

Centre for Contemporary British Theatre, Royal Holloway, University of London

Analysing plays remains a core component of contemporary theatre and performance research. The play-text has long been an object of scholarly fascination and scrutiny, and the traditions and practices of playwright-focused research continue to evolve today. However, as the field has broadened, a sense of the possibilities and methods of play analysis warrants a fresh investigation to assess its contribution to the discipline in the twenty-first century.


Keynote speaker: Dr. Marissia Fragkou ('Reading Plays for the Contemporary Moment: Precarity, Ecology and Strangeness')


Keynote speaker: Professor Dan Rebellato ('Do Not Perform This Play')

This one-day symposium which took place on 5 July 2019 and was sponsored by the Centre for Contemporary British Theatre (Royal Holloway) in collaboration with Goldsmiths College, launched a critical conversation about the purposes and significance of play analysis – past, present and looking towards the future. Speakers from nine universities discussed how and why contemporary scholars work with plays, including recent methodological developments in play analysis and the emergence of new critical-theoretical perspectives. Several PhD students and early career scholars attended from around the country and their presence enriched the day.

Excellent keynote presentations were delivered by Dr Marissia Fragkou (Canterbury Christ Church) and Professor Dan Rebellato (Royal Holloway). The event organisers were Dr Chris Megson (Director of the Centre for Contemporary British Theatre), Dr Lynette Goddard (Royal Holloway) and Professor Clare Finburgh Delijani (Goldsmiths).


Professor Clare Finburgh Delijani


Hannah Greenstreet


Dr Harry Derbyshire


Dr Stephe Harrop

You can download the schedule and abstracts from the symposium here.

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