Difficulties Students Face in Understanding Drama in English Literature at the Islamic University of Gaza (IUG)

  •  Mahmoud Dawoud Ali Shakfa    


The present paper explores the problems of English Language and Literature junior and senior majors, who are enrolled in a drama course at the Islamic University of Gaza (IUG). The course emphasizes the significance of drama. Morgan (1987: 7) defines drama as an “art of communication,” which is essential in teaching literature. A survey was administered and the questionnaire consisted of of open and closed questions to have both quantitative and qualitative information of what each participant attributes to each facet of the study. The participants of the study consisted of 133 randomly selected students, which is 39% of the population of the current study. The population included both male and female students of “English Literature in the 20th Century” in the second semester (2006–2007). The data were analyzed using Pearson correlation, T-test independent sample, Spearman correlation, means and percentages, as well as Alpha Cronbach and Split-half. Findings showed that a majority of the students agreed that “reading drama is more common than watching it.” Students face this major difficulty in learning drama. Over 70% of the students agreed that “students feel frustrated with the length of a play,” “Extensive use of symbolism, similes, metaphor,” and “writing style” were serious problems. Further research is strongly recommended to be conducted particularly in IUG, to fill in the gap among issues students face such as cultural, communicative, and linguistic facets in learning drama. The removal of these obstacles can benefit different aspects of learning and teaching drama and literature. These implications can be multi-dimensional in terms of linguistic, cultural, and communicative aims.

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