Classics (Classical Civilisation) MA/MA(SocSci)

The Roman Stage: A History Of Roman Drama From The Republic To The Empire CLASSIC4010

  • Academic Session: 2023-24
  • School: School of Humanities
  • Credits: 20
  • Level: Level 4 (SCQF level 10)
  • Typically Offered: Semester 1 (Alternate Years)
  • Available to Visiting Students: Yes

Short Description

The course offers a critical and research-based overview of the development of Roman drama in all its forms (tragedy, comedy, and mime) from the third century BC to the first century AD.


Two hours per week; This is one of the honours options in Classics and may not run every year.

Excluded Courses





One 2,500-word essay 30%, 90 minute examination 70%

Main Assessment In: April/May

Are reassessment opportunities available for all summative assessments? Not applicable

Reassessments are normally available for all courses, except those which contribute to the Honours classification. For non Honours courses, students are offered reassessment in all or any of the components of assessment if the satisfactory (threshold) grade for the overall course is not achieved at the first attempt. This is normally grade D3 for undergraduate students and grade C3 for postgraduate students. Exceptionally it may not be possible to offer reassessment of some coursework items, in which case the mark achieved at the first attempt will be counted towards the final course grade. Any such exceptions for this course are described below. 

Course Aims

The aims of the course are to

to trace the development of Roman drama in all its forms from the third century BC to the first century AD, to consider its debt to Greek drama, and to read major works of tragic and comic playwrights both as spectacles intended for live performance and as complex literary texts that convey a message to their audience.

Intended Learning Outcomes of Course

By the end of the course students should be able to
- show a critical understanding of the primary set texts in all forms of assessment and in discussion with both fellow-students and staff
- situate Roman drama within its literary, cultural, political, and social context
- treat the primary set texts as scripts and visualise the stage-action and its function in them
- engage in the debate whether or not Senecan tragedy was intended for performance
- apply knowledge of secondary literature to the interpretation of these plays
demonstrate such essay skills as the department has stipulated in the Honours Handbook (including critical awareness, research skills, and improvement in verbal expression (oral and written))

Minimum Requirement for Award of Credits

Students must submit at least 75% by weight of the components (including examinations) of the course's summative assessment.