Drama is one of the oldest forms of literature, dating back to the ancient Greeks, and also occurring in the civilisations of the east (Japanese Nō theatre, Sanskrit theatre, Chinese opera, for example). Its key features: are performance, in theatres, by actors, before an audience, often accompanied by music and dance. Hence it is distinguished as being 'collaborative in production and collective in reception' (acknowledgements to Wikipedia). The distinction between tragedy and comedy dates back to the ancient Greeks; while the notion of a drama as a play starts in the C19th; accommodating, in the C20th, radio drama, film and television performances. Recognising these traditions and influences, this Paper will nonetheless focus on drama as text – text to be read, analysed, discussed and written about. This is a survey course, and so texts are selected from different periods and different areas round the world. Texts in translation will be included, as will adaptation of plays into film. In addition to shorter assignments, students will be encouraged to engage in their own research, focusing on a particular theme or aspect or playwright for a longer research essay.