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TH327 - Food & Performance

  • Module code: TH327
  • Module name: Food & Performance
  • Department: School of Theatre & Performance Studies and Cultural & Media Policy Studies
  • Credit: 30

Content and teaching | Assessment | Availability

Module content and teaching

Principal aims

The tensions between creativity and domesticity, between adulation and exploitation are explored in relation to performances that acknowledge the breadth of circumstances in which we engage with food, culminating in an extended consideration of the theatricality of dining. Alongside reflection on the social and aesthetic aspects of food, the ethical and ecological cost of feeding and feasting is explored.

Principal learning outcomes

By the end of the module the student should be able to identify and debate central issues around the cultivation, distribution, preparation and consumption of food and the extent to which these are addressed in theatre practice. The student should be able to identify the points of contact and departure between food and theatre both in theory and practice. They should have an understanding of the roles of guest, host, cook and diner and the ways in which these are depicted within or resonate with the roles assumed in performance. The theatricality of food consumption will be the primary focus of the student's enquiry though by the end of the module they should also have an appreciation of anthropological, sociological, historical and ethical approaches to the subject. The student should be able to demonstrate their understanding of key concepts explored during the module (such as food taboos, culinary tourism, hospitality and taste) in practical work of a nature determined in consultation with the tutor. The practical work will permit the student to experience and reflect upon the inter-relationships of guests, hosts, producers and consumers as they contribute in one or more of these roles to the practice of others in the group. Furthermore, students should learn (or fortify their existing skills of) how to work productively with others, to grasp complex problems and produce imaginative solutions, as well as to develop discipline, presentation, and organisational skills.

Timetabled teaching activities

One 2 hour session per week and additional hours in the Summer term toward realisation of practical project

Departmental link

Module assessment

Assessment group Assessment name Percentage
30 CATS (Module code: TH327-30)
D (Assessed/examined work) Assessed Course Work 30%
Assessed Course Work 35%
locally Adminstered Exam 35%
Assessed Course Work 100%

Module availability

This module is available on the following courses:



Optional Core


  • Undergraduate English and Theatre Studies (QW34) - Year 3
  • Undergraduate English and Theatre Studies with Intercalated Year (QW35) - Year 4
  • Undergraduate French with Theatre Studies (R1W4) - Year 4
  • Undergraduate Italian with Theatre Studies (R3W4) - Year 4
  • Undergraduate Theatre and Performance Studies (W421) - Year 3
  • Undergraduate Theatre and Performance Studies (with Intercalated Year) (W422) - Year 4