Drama in Literature
Drama, in literature, is a composition in verse or prose portraying fictional or non-fictional events through performance and dialogue. Though developed primarily for entertainment, over a period, it became a vehicle for subtle reform of society by presenting a mirror to it.
Dramas are often referred to as plays, and the dramatist is also called a playwright. It is a literary genre that takes various forms like tragedy, comedy, farce, melodrama and others.
Its origins can be traced to Greece and the age of Aristotle. In Aristotle’s times, tragedy was the higher form of drama as it imitated actions of higher men while comedy was the lower form of drama, as it imitated actions that were of low value, like people getting drunk and becoming open-ended in behaviour. So, he defined tragedy in his work, THE POETICS as “an imitation of an action, that is serious, complete, and of a certain magnitude; in language embellished with each kind of artistic ornament….in the form of action, not of narrative: with incidents arousing pity and fear, wherewith to accomplish its catharsis of such emotions.”
Now we refer to the features mentioned in the quote above as literary elements of drama which are the theme, plot, characters, dialogue, music or rhythm and spectacle.
While the study of drama can be enjoyed for the sheer love of language and performance, it also helps us develop as human beings. We are transported to strange and foreign worlds and societies and get to see characters respond to situations that might enrich our own experience. We also view situations and events from varied perspectives which broadens our horizons.
Drama today has integrated with technology and dramatists write giving extensive details of stage sets, props, lights, costumes and other paraphernalia. This aids in highlighting the ‘spectacle’ aspect of the genre and brings it alive to the audience.
To conclude, drama is an important focus of the curriculum in schools to nurture in students, the appreciation of art and language in all its manifestations. As a school that promotes holistic education, reimagining the status quo, at Prometheus, drama is encouraged to bring out the creative best in every child and shape them to be emotionally strong and intelligent.