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Best Plays for "Drama in Literature" ClassI will be teaching a semester long "Drama in...

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mbleck | Teacher | eNotes Newbie

Posted March 9, 2009 at 1:00 PM via web

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Best Plays for "Drama in Literature" Class

I will be teaching a semester long "Drama in Literature" class next year (grades 10-11) which will be a study of plays.  I'd like to cover a variety of time periods and authors, but I am at a loss for ideas.  I am looking for some suggestions on plays to use (the other English teacher uses most of Shakespeare, so those are out), resources I can access, and--is there a textbook for a class like this?  I know someone out there can help me.  I need to order texts or scripts, etc. soon, and I'm feeling a bit lost.  I am grateful for your help.

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writergal06 | Teacher | (Level 2) Associate Educator

Posted March 10, 2009 at 7:19 AM (Answer #2)

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linda-allen | High School Teacher | (Level 3) Senior Educator

Posted March 10, 2009 at 7:55 AM (Answer #3)

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The Prestwick House resources are great. I use them in all my classes. You can access them here at eNotes. Just click on the Lesson Plans tab at any title.

Here are my suggestions:

A Doll's House, Ibsen

The Glass Menagerie, Williams

Antigone, Sophocles

The Crucible, Miller

Our Town, Wilder


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sillymoose | High School Teacher | (Level 1) eNoter

Posted March 10, 2009 at 1:41 PM (Answer #4)

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Well I'd start off with Oedipus Rex, by Sophocles

and then move up the timeline to include

The Crucible, by Miller

The Importance of Being Ernest, by Wilde

Pygmalion, by Shaw


A Streetcar Named Desire by Tennessee Williams


I don't know if you'll have enough time to do more then that.

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amy-lepore | High School Teacher | (Level 1) Educator Emeritus

Posted March 10, 2009 at 5:37 PM (Answer #5)

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I like the suggestions you've gotten already, but you seem to be missing some more modern American stuff.  How about these:

"Fences" by August Wilson

"A Raisin in the Sun" Hansberry


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lindzc | (Level 1) eNoter

Posted March 14, 2009 at 5:55 AM (Answer #6)

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I wouldn't throw out all of Shakespeare...choose some thing that isn't often taught like Taming of the Shrew or Merchant of VeniceBarefoot in the Park, Aresnic and Old Lace, Oedipus Rex, The Crucible, Diary of Anne Frank just to name a few.  I have always had great success with Arsenic, Crucible, and Midsummer Night's Dream.

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morrol | High School Teacher | (Level 1) Associate Educator

Posted March 16, 2009 at 11:33 AM (Answer #7)

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Sophocles, especially Lysistrata is always a big hit with my high school students. It is especially good because you can read the play, then show the students "The Lysistrata Project" which uses the ancient play in a relevant way. It is a good example of timelessness in literature, and the effectiveness of drama.

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cetaylorplfd | High School Teacher | (Level 3) Senior Educator

Posted February 16, 2010 at 9:55 AM (Answer #8)

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Death of a Salesman by Arthur Miller is also another great choice.

If you wanted to break away from the mold a little bit, you might also consider exploring some revisionist works such as A Tempest by Aime Cesaire or M. Butterfly by David Henry Hwang.

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najee | eNotes Newbie

Posted February 28, 2010 at 6:08 AM (Answer #9)

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What does this epigram mean by Thoreau MEN HAVE BECOME TOOLS OF THEIR LIFE. 

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lnorton | College Teacher | (Level 3) Adjunct Educator

Posted July 22, 2010 at 5:43 AM (Answer #10)

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Aristophanes' Lysistrata is always popular.

Susan Glaspell's Trifles is short and a great way to bring in feminist issues.

Oleanna is a play that particularly interests students (sexual harassment between a student and professor -- more complex than it may seem at first blush)


I also like Six Characters in Search of an Author. It's much more experimental, but my students got into it.

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lmetcalf | High School Teacher | (Level 3) Senior Educator

Posted July 26, 2010 at 4:46 PM (Answer #11)

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I would add something fun such as You Can't Take it With You  by George Kaufman.  It is truly laugh out loud funny, and yet ties into common themes such as the importance of family and the importance of dreams.

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