Postgraduate taught 

Playwriting & Dramaturgy MLitt

Queer Exceptions THEATRE5034

  • Academic Session: 2023-24
  • School: School of Culture and Creative Arts
  • Credits: 20
  • Level: Level 5 (SCQF level 11)
  • Typically Offered: Either Semester 1 or Semester 2
  • Available to Visiting Students: No

Short Description

This course brings together queer theory with theatre studies to examine the practices, conventions and contexts of performance in the UK and on the international stage. Though grounded in queer theory's interrogation of cultural norms for sexuality and subjectivity, this course explores how ideas of 'queerness' might inform our understanding of a wide range of 'exceptional' subjects in performance - including (but not limited to) martyrs, monsters, prophets and anti-heroes.


10 x 3hr seminars over 10 weeks as scheduled on MyCampus.

Excluded Courses





1 x Essay, 3500 words (70%)

1 x Annotated bibliography, 1500 words (30%)

Course Aims

This course aims to:

■ introduce students to some of the key ideas, theorists and practitioners within the field of queer theory and performance, and the critical genealogy of that work;

■ examine the claims of queer theory in response to the staging of gender, sexuality and subjectivity within specific traditions and contexts of performance;

■ explore the discourse of exceptionality as a frame for examining anti-normative performance practices and theatrical representations.

Intended Learning Outcomes of Course

By the end of this course students will be able to:

■ articulate key arguments from the field of queer theory, and apply those ideas in the critical study of contemporary British and international performance practice at an advanced level;

■ critically describe and assess the usefulness of a queer theoretical perspective for theatre studies in the study of sexuality, subjectivity and beyond;

■ synthesise ideas from across the multi-disciplinary field of queer theory through a research-driven essay and annotated bibliography;

■ apply frames of specialised reference outside of the domain of theatre studies to analyse performance.

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.