We will be looking at two plays during this course, one comedy and one drama. Each play will require a written analysis and should be approximately two pages in length. I am not going to bog you down with format and style issues but I will expect college level writing. A written analysis should include a few standard items. A basic plot synopsis for one. This can happen all at once or it can unfold as your writing moves forward if it makes sense to do it that way. Don’t get too wrapped up in the synopsis. It shouldn’t take up too much of your paper. Look for the conflict. All plays have conflict, comedies as much as dramas. There can be minor conflicts based on character differences but there is usually one major conflict that really propels the action.
Describe the characters. Are they fully realized or do they seem to be types rather than well-rounded individuals?
What was the playwright’s point? Why did he write it, in your opinion? You can certainly include your own personal opinions of the play but make sure you support them. When we like or dislike something, there are usually reasons, whether we always analyze them or not. This time, you should think about why you like or dislike the material.
As background, and to further understand structure, you might find the section on Aristotle’s Poetics (78 – 80 in the Fourth Edition) helpful.