Knowledge in Drama
What kind of knowledge can I learn and explore in tutorials?
Knowledge of objects
While people, things and places can all be examined from different theoretical positions, you will also be asked to explore exactly what people might be viewing. When you identify a particular ‘object’ to study, it has often already been investigated within a specific scholarly field or discipline of knowledge. For example, those who study the object ‘drama’ have identified different aspects of this object and produced information that includes the study of literary texts and how they can be or have been acted. Such study may include analysis of particular dramatic texts, specific dramatic productions, or activities that may contribute to the assessment or production of dramas. Since ‘dramas’ are objects that can be viewed from many different angles, you may be asked to consider the society that produced a work, the literary structure of a text, the style of performance, reviews of a performance and so on. While many studies have been conducted that offer all kinds of information about dramas you are studying, it is also important to remember that if you claim to know something about ‘dramas’ you need to refer to other studies and provide evidence to support that claim. Without such evidence, the information you provide will only be viewed as an uninformed opinion.
Knowledge of yourself
All individuals have different experiences, values, interests, beliefs, abilities and motivations and many of these aspects of yourself influence your decisions, perceptions and assessments of objects, people and events. While we can probably never be fully aware of how all the parts of ourselves inform our readings of things we study, we can sometimes recognise how we form our perceptions by reflecting upon our responses to objects and ideas and by attempting to recognise our own biases. Since theories attempt to explain how and why people can see, reflecting upon your own responses can enable you to describe how and why you see things in your own unique way. This kind of reflection helps you articulate your ideas and find reasons and evidence to support your assessments of objects. However, it also helps you understand more about yourself and your responses to the world you occupy.
Knowledge of others
When discussions and activities involve a number of people in a group, we are in a privileged position to be able to hear and see how others think, feel and act in response to various subjects, activities and possibilities. Since each person’s abilities, experiences and beliefs are different, tutorials also provide opportunities for us to learn from each other. Sharing ideas, understandings, knowledge, skills, performances and opinions requires careful listening and clear expression but the process of exploring ideas and opinions with others adds to the information we have about the work we are studying or creating. Group discussions and activities are therefore extremely important parts of practical tutorials because they introduce many more possibilities that might not have been considered by individuals working in isolation.