Our theater subject page listings are changing and growing all the time. As a result, you may not find an exact match to our theater subject listings when you are submitting your homework help request. In this case, choose the Theater - Oher category which is designed specifically for this situation.
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In addition to acting, some other subject areas in theater include:
-History of drama
...and many others. If you don't see the category you're looking for, ask us!
On a level appropriate for a student seeking college homework help in theater, a great online tutorial for drama/theater is offered by MIT's OpenCourseWare and is titled Foundations of Theater Practice.
Tragedy arose from religious ritual called chant/choral (in honour of Dionysius). Drama was considered credible in the classical and mediaeval world. The word tragedy stems from the Greek word τράγος, meaning goat, generally thought to be because a goat was given as a prize or a sacrifice at the annual drama festival. The oldest surviving play texts were penned by Aeschylus in the fifth century BC.
The whole point of tragedy was worship – encouraging a sense of awe in divine power and resulting in the process of purification, or catharsis. This power was expressed through various gods representing different aspects of morality: marriage, justice, heroism and intelligence.
Human beings were seen as morally imperfect, capable of revenge, sexual licence etc., so tragedy charts human moral development against the will of the gods who were forever looming in the background observing our follies.
The ancient Greeks were not just concerned with telling a moral story but with projecting characters and their human problems.
The message was that you cannot escape the will of the gods and/or the divine plan. The usual downfall of human beings was to commit:
Hubris – A wish to step beyond limits of one's own being
Treating gods lightly
Asking too many questions etc
Tragedy therefore explores the human condition and raises questions about our existence in the great scheme of things.
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