nevertheless she persisted: a feminist/antiracist/LGBTQ-INCLUSIVE CROSS-CURRICULAR playwriting course 

In this course, students develop their play analysis and play writing skills, as well as their collaborative ensemble and general theatrical skills, through group and individual work including improvisational "writing," in-class discussions, research, and writing exercises. The texts and source material is focused on historical figures and stories not usually included in textbooks: femme-identifying people, LGBTQ-identifying people, and people of color regardless of gender. The final project is the writing, editing and presenting of an original play or series of plays. 

Units of Study:

1)   PLAY ANALYSIS: Read (and view live performances of) plays that feature historical figures and stories of women, LGBTQ-identifying people, and people of color; analyze dramatic structure; and discuss playwriting techniques used in them. (Cross-curricular collaboration with English Language Arts department).

2)   PLAYWRITING:

a. Group improvisational "writing" activities to explore themes and generate material.    

b. Individual writing exercises to practice playwriting techniques.

c. Writing and refining of scenes, monologues and final script for original play.

3)   CRITIQUE: Giving and receiving feedback on writing in a workshop environment.

4)   RESEARCH/DRAMATURGY: Research historical figures and their contexts and develop them into dramatic characters. (Cross-curricular collaboration with history department and library science)

5)   PLAY DEVELOPMENT PROCESS: Cast and produce a reading/presentation of the final script(s) for an invited audience.

 

Assessment:

1)   Independent reading of plays, analysis of playwriting elements (notes in journal, play log, and in-class discussion)

2)   Ensemble collaboration (in-class participation in group activities and discussions)

2)   Playwriting exercises (in-class writing)

3)   Depth of character research (visual and music collage)

4)   Ability to give and receive critique of work-in-progress (in-class participation, observed)

5)   Refining of monologues and scenes created in playmaking process (written drafts)

6)   Present a final script through a reading with an audience (final script, live presentation)

7)   Reflection on playwriting process (Medium of student’s choice)