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As one of Egyptian theater's leading contemporary playwrights, Alfred Farag has had a profound influence on shaping Arabic drama and Egyptian cultural politics during the past five decades. His plays interrogate the human condition, exposing the struggles of nonheroic individuals faced with political, social, and economic abuse. Farag's dramatic themes, his tireless campaign to democratize the theater, and his encouragement of cultural awareness in the remote and rural regions of Egypt in addition to the cities led to his imprisonment, battles with censorship, and exile. This remarkable writer's indomitable spirit is clearly evidenced in his spending a large part of his time while imprisoned writing plays for performances by his fellow prisons. In the first book-length examination of his work in English, Dina Amin chronicles Farag's career and offers a critical perspective on his creative output and the condition of Egyptian theater in the 1970s through the 1990s.Farag is best known for the folkloric and neorealist plays he produced during the sixties, but critics have consistently overlooked the immense body of work produced in the thirty years that followed. Filling that gap, Amin offers an account of the sophisticated development of his later work, revealing his bold experimentation and successful embrace of modernist, absurdist, and post-modern styles. With fresh insight, Amin contextualizes these works within Farag's own creative history and the larger history of Arabic theater. This book, with the inclusion of four plays and a monologue (translated for the first time into English), will bring a much-deserved wider audience to the work of this extraordinary dramatist.
Critical Essays (Situations I) contains essays on literature and philosophy from a highly formative period of French philosopher and leading existentialist Jean-Paul Sartre's life, the years between 1938 and 1946. This period is particularly interesting because it is before Sartre published the magnum opus that would solidify his name as a philosopher, Being and Nothingness. Instead, during this time Sartre was emerging as one of France's most promising young novelists and playwrights he had already published Nausea, The Age of Reason, The Flies, and No Exit. Not content, however, he was meanwhile consciously attempting to revive the form of the essay via detailed examinations of writers who were to become central to European cultural life in the immediate aftermath of World War II. Collected here are Sartre's experiments in reimagining the idea and structure of the essay. Among the distinguished writers he analyzes are Francis Ponge, Georges Bataille, Vladimir Nabokov, Maurice Blanchot, and, of course, Albert Camus, whose novel The Stranger Sartre endeavours to explain in these pages. Critical Essays (Situations I) also contains a famous attack on the Catholic novelist Francois Mauriac, studies of the great American literary iconoclasts Faulkner and Dos Passos, and brief but insightful essays on aspects of the philosophical writings of Husserl and Descartes.This new translation by Chris Turner reinvigorates the original skill and voice of Sartre's work and will be essential reading for fans of Sartre and the many writers and works he explores. For my generation he has always been one of the great intellectual heroes of the twentieth century, a man whose insight and intellectual gifts were at the service of nearly every progressive cause of our time. Edward Said
In 1994 the Arts Council of Great Britain brought together a number of theatre directors as part of the City of Drama celebrations. This is a collection of interviews and discussions with directors who have helped shape the development of theatre in the last 20 years. They include Peter Brook, Peter Stein, Augusto Boal, Jorge Lavelli, Lluis Pasqual, Lev Dodin, Maria Irene Fornes, Jonathan Miller, Jatinder Verma, Peter Sellars, Declan Donnellan, Ariane Mnouchkine, Ion Caramitru, Yukio Ninagawa and Robert Wilson. In addition to the art and craft of directing, there are discussions on multiculturalism; the "classical" repertoire; theatre companies and institutions; working in a foreign language; opera; Shakespeare; new technologies; the art of acting; design; international festivals; politics and aesthetics; the audience; and theatre and society. Finally, there is an epilogue by Peter Brook, Jonathan Miller and Oliver Sacks. -- .
Key features of this text: How to study the text Author and historical background General and detailed summaries Commentary on themes, structure, characters, language and style Glossaries Test questions and issues to consider Essay writing advice Cultural connections Literary terms Illustrations Colour design
In this book, Jane K. Brown offers an original reading of Goethe's complex masterpiece in the context of European Romanticism. Looking at the two parts of Faust in sequence, she views the second part as an elaboration of what was implicit in the first, and she clarifies the patterns of thought and organization underlying the play. In Faust, she argues, Goethe not only situates German culture within the wider European literary tradition, but also demonstrates that all literature is by its nature allusive that it exists only as part of a tradition."
Brecht's Furcht und Elend des Dritten Reiches (Fear and Misery of the Third Reich) gives a compelling documentary picture of life in Nazi Germany. Close readings of individual scenes are accompanied by a detailed analysis of their role within the play's overall structure. Contrary to the assumption that it is a work of Aristotelian realism, Brecht is shown to employ covert alienation devices that are an integral part of his literary campaign against Third Reich Germany. This first study in English on the subject of Brecht and fascism offers a corrective to the overconcentration on the play's artistic aspects. It considers Brecht's relationship to the Popular Front's campaign against the National Socialist regime. Attention is paid to the play's genesis, and, in the case of The Private Life of the Master Race, to the partial shift from the Third Reich of 1933-38 to the war period predicted in the original Furcht und Elend cycle. The play's central theme of resistance, its propaganda value, and its political and artistic reception are addressed within their historical and ideological framework. The result is a challenging assessment of the play's strengths and limitations as a response to German totalitarianism. John J. White is Emeritus Professor of German and Comparative Literature at King's College London, and Ann White is Senior Lecturer in German at Royal Holloway, University of London.
This essential guide provides a deeply informed survey of the criticism of all the plays and major stories authored by Brian Friel. Scott Boltwood introduces readers to the key themes that have been used to characterise Friel's entire career, moving chronologically from his early work as a successful short story writer to the present day. This is an essential text for dedicated modules or courses on Modern or Contemporary British and Irish drama offered as part of English Literature degrees, or for the literature and culture modules of undergraduate and postgraduate Irish Studies degrees. In addition, this book is an ideal companion for A Level students reading Friel's plays, or anyone with an interest in this complex writer's career.
John Ford's tragedy, first printed in 1633, is the first major
English play to take as its theme a subject still rarely handled:
fulfilled incest between brother and sister. It is one of the most
studied and performed of all plays of the period, and has been
successfully adapted for film and radio. The Revels plays edition
by Derek Roper has been the standard scholarly edition since it
appeared in 1975. This new edition uses the same authoritative
text, but with notes designed for modern undergraduate use. The
substantial introduction has been completely rewritten to take
account of the studies and new approaches of the last twenty years.
it presents the play as an 'interrogative text', in which
subversive meanings are inscribed within an apparently orthodox
narrative; as a courageous treatment of forbidden love; and as an
achieved work of Baroque art.
How can we make sense of the innovative structure of Euripidean drama? And what political role did tragedy play in the democracy of classical Athens? These questions are usually considered to be mutually exclusive, but this book shows that they can only be properly answered together. Providing a new approach to the aesthetics and politics of Greek tragedy, Victoria Wohl argues that the poetic form of Euripides' drama constitutes a mode of political thought. Through readings of select plays, she explores the politics of Euripides' radical aesthetics, showing how formal innovation generates political passions with real-world consequences. Euripides' plays have long perplexed readers. With their disjointed plots, comic touches, and frequent happy endings, they seem to stretch the boundaries of tragedy. But the plays' formal traits--from their exorbitantly beautiful lyrics to their arousal and resolution of suspense--shape the audience's political sensibilities and ideological attachments. Engendering civic passions, the plays enact as well as express political ideas. Wohl draws out the political implications of Euripidean aesthetics by exploring such topics as narrative and ideological desire, the politics of pathos, realism and its utopian possibilities, the logic of political allegory, and tragedy's relation to its historical moment. Breaking through the impasse between formalist and historicist interpretations of Greek tragedy, Euripides and the Politics of Form demonstrates that aesthetic structure and political meaning are mutually implicated--and that to read the plays poetically is necessarily to read them politically.
Modern British Playwriting: The 1980s equips readers with a fresh assessment of the theatre and principle playwrights and plays from a decade when political and economic forces were changing society dramatically. It offers a broad survey of the context and of the playwrights and companies such as Complicite and DV8 that rose to prominence at this time. Alongside this it provides a detailed examination based on fresh research of four of the most significant playwrights of the era and considers the influence they had on later work. The 1980s volume features a detailed study by four scholars of the work of four of the major playwrights who came to prominence: Howard Barker (by Sarah Goldingay), Jim Cartwright (David Lane), Sarah Daniels (Jane Milling) and Timberlake Wertenbaker (Sara Freeman). Essential for students of Theatre Studies, the series of six decadal volumes provides a critical survey and study of the theatre produced from the 1950s to 2009. Each volume features a critical analysis of the work of four key playwrights besides other theatre work from that decade, together with an extensive commentary on the period. Readers will understand the works in their contexts and be presented with fresh research material and a reassessment from the perspective of the twenty-first century. This is an authoritative and stimulating reassessment of British playwriting in the 1980s.
Essential for students of theatre studies, Methuen Drama's Decades of Modern British Playwriting series provides a comprehensive survey and study of the theatre produced in each decade from the 1950s to 2009 in six volumes. Each volume features a critical analysis and reevaluation of the work of four key playwrights from that decade authored by a team of experts, together with an extensive commentary on the period . The 1960s was a decade of seismic changes in British theatre as in society at large. This important new study in Methuen Drama's Decades of Modern British Playwriting series explores how theatre-makers responded to the changes in society. Together with a thorough survey of the theatrical activity of the decade it offers detailed reassessments of the work of four of the leading playwrights. The 1960s volume provides in-depth studies of the work of four of the major playwrights who came to prominence: Edward Bond (by Steve Nicholson), John Arden (Bill McDonnell), Harold Pinter (Jamie Andrews) and Alan Ayckbourn (Frances Babbage). It examines their work then, its legacy today, and how critical consensus has changed over time.
Beau, a pianist expat living in London, meets Rufus, an eccentric young lawyer, at the dawn of the internet dating revolution. After a life spent recovering from the disappointment and hurt of loving men in a world that refused to allow it, Beau is determined to keep his expectations low with Rufus. But Rufus comes from a new generation of gay men who believe happiness is as much their right as anyone else's, and what Beau assumed would be just another fling grows into one of the most surprising and defining relationships of his life. A remarkably moving, brilliantly funny love story, Gently Down the Stream is the latest play from acclaimed playwright Martin Sherman. The play reflects the triumphs and heartbreaks of the entire length of the gay rights movement, celebrating and mourning the ghosts of the men and women who led the way for equality, marriage and the right to dream. It received its world premiere at the Public Theatre, New York, on 14 March 2017 in a production starring Tony-award winner Harvey Fierstein.
Though long ignored or dismissed by film critics and scholars, Marcel Pagnol (1895-1974) was among the most influential auteurs of his era. This comprehensive overview of Pagnol's career, the first ever published in English, highlights his unique place in French cinema as a self-sufficient writer-producer-director and his contribution to the long-term evolution of filmmaking in a broader European context. In addition to reassessing the converted playwright's controversial prioritisation of speech over image, the book juxtaposes Pagnol's sunny rural melodramas with the dark, urban variety of poetic realism practised by influential peers such as Jean Renoir and Marcel Carne. In his penchant for outdoor location shooting and ethnographic authenticity, as well as his stubborn attachment to independent, artisanal production values, Pagnol served as a precursor to the French New Wave and Italian Neo-Realism, inspiring the likes of Jean-Luc Godard, Francois Truffaut, Vittorio De Sica, and Roberto Rossellini. -- .
'Gamesters and Highwaymen are generally very good to their Whores, but they are very Devils to their Wives.' With The Beggar's Opera (1728), John Gay created one of the most enduringly popular works in English theatre history, and invented a new dramatic form, the ballad opera. Gay's daring mixture of caustic political satire, well-loved popular tunes, and a story of crime and betrayal set in the urban underworld of prostitutes and thieves was an overnight sensation. Captain Macheath and Polly Peachum have become famous well beyond the confines of Gay's original play, and in its sequel, Polly, banned in Gay's lifetime, their adventures continue in the West Indies. With a cross-dressing heroine and a cast of female adventurers, pirates, Indian princes, rebel slaves, and rapacious landowners, Polly lays bare a culture in which all human relationships are reduced to commercial transactions. Raucous, lyrical, witty, ironic and tragic by turns, The Beggar's Opera and Polly - published together here for the first time - offer a scathing and ebullient portrait of a society in which statesmen and outlaws, colonialists and pirates, are impossible to tell apart. ABOUT THE SERIES: For over 100 years Oxford World's Classics has made available the widest range of literature from around the globe. Each affordable volume reflects Oxford's commitment to scholarship, providing the most accurate text plus a wealth of other valuable features, including expert introductions by leading authorities, helpful notes to clarify the text, up-to-date bibliographies for further study, and much more.
The aim of Eric P. Levy's book is to usher readers of Beckett to a higher understanding and appreciation of what is unique about Beckett's representations of the human experience. He maintains that diligent reading of the Beckett corpus, alongside key texts in the history of Western thought reveals that Beckett was intensely concerned with representing certain ""constitutive principles"" of the human condition and that the human condition Beckett saw and represented was one founded on principles of doubt, negation, unknowing, and unverifiable being. One of the book's major contributions to Beckett studies is its exhaustive engagement with mainstream Continental philosophy - Plato, Aristotle, Descartes, Kant - to name a few.
This book offers a survey of how female and male characters in English Renaissance theatre participated and interacted in musical activities, both inside and outside the contemporary societal decorum. Wong's analysis broadens our understanding of the general theatrical representation of music, or musical dramaturgy, and complicates the current discussion of musical portrayal and construction of gender during this period. Wong discusses dramaturgical meanings of music and its association with gender, love, and erotomania in Renaissance plays. The negotiation between the dichotomous qualities of the heavenly and the demonic finds extensive application in recent studies of music in early modern English plays. However, while ideological dualities identified in music in traditional Renaissance thinking may seem unequivocal, various musical representations of characters and situations in early modern drama would prove otherwise. Wong, building upon the conventional model of binarism, explores how playwrights created their musical characters and scenarios according to the received cultural use and perception of music, and, at the same time, experimented with the multivalent meanings and significance embodied in theatrical music.
Though better known today as a political theorist than as a dramatist, Machiavelli secured his fame as a giant in the history of Italian comedy more than fifty years before Shakespeare's comedies delighted English-speaking audiences. This bilingual edition includes all three examples of Machiavelli's comedic art: sparkling translations of his farcical masterpiece, The Mandrake ; of his version of Terence's The Woman From Andros ; and of his Plautus-inspired Clizia --works whose genre afforded Machiavelli a unique vehicle not only for entertaining audiences but for examining virtue amid the twists and turns of fortune .
When we are confronted with a work of art, what is its effect on us? In contrast to post-Enlightenment conceptions, which tend to restrict themselves to aesthetic or discursive responses, the ancient Greeks and Romans often conceived works of art as having a more dynamic effect on their viewers, inspiring them to direct imitation of what they saw represented. This notion of 'mimetic contagion' was a persistent and widespread mode of framing response to art across the ancient world, discernible in both popular and elevated cultural forms, yet deployed differently in various historical contexts; it is only under the specificity of a particular cultural moment's concerns that it becomes most useful as a lens for understanding how that culture is attempting to negotiate the problems of representation. After framing the phenomenon in terms general enough to be applicable across many periods, literary genres, and artistic media, this volume takes a particular literary work, Terence's Eunuch, as a starting point, both as a vivid example of this extensive pattern, and as a case study situating use of the motif within the peculiarities of a particular historical moment, in this case mid-second-century BC Rome and its anxieties about the power of art. One of the features of mimetic contagion frequently noted in this study is its capacity to render the operation of a particular work of art an emblem for the effect of representation more generally, and this is certainly the case in the Eunuch, whereby the painting at the centre of the play functions as a metatheatrical figure for the dynamics of mimesis throughout, illustrating how the concept may function as the key to a particular literary work. Although mimetic contagion is only one available Greco-Roman strategy for understanding the power of art, by offering an extended reading of a single work of literature through this lens, this volume demonstrates what ramifications closer attention to it might have for modern readers and literary criticism.
Samuel Beckett and the Language of Subjectivity is the first sustained exploration of aporia as a vital, subversive, and productive figure within Beckett's writing as it moves between prose and theatre. Informed by key developments in analytic and continental philosophies of language, Tubridy's fluent analysis demonstrates how Beckett's translations - between languages, genres, bodies, and genders - offer a way out of the impasse outlined in his early aesthetics. The primary modes of the self's extension into the world are linguistic (speaking, listening) and material (engaging with bodies, spaces and objects). Yet what we mean by language has changed in the twenty-first century. Beckett's concern with words must be read through the information economy in which contemporary identities are forged. Derval Tubridy provides the groundwork for new insights on Beckett in terms of the posthuman: the materialist, vitalist and relational subject cathected within differential mechanisms of power.
From the late sixteenth century and well into the seventeenth, Spain produced one of the most vibrant and popular dramatic canons in the history of theatre, known as the Comedia. Collected, translated and edited by the pre-eminent scholars in the field are the finest examples of this rich source, along with the scholarly apparatus necessary to study the canon in depth.
"Humanist Tragedies", like its companion volume "Humanist Comedies" (ITRL 19), contains a representative sampling of Latin drama written during the Tre- and Quattrocento. The five tragedies included in this volume - Albertino Mussato's "Ecerinis" (1314), Antonio Loschi's "Achilleis" (ca. 1387), Gregorio Corraro's "Progne" (ca. 1429), Leonardo Dati's "Hyempsal" (ca. 1442), and Marcellino Verardi's "Fernandus servatus" (1493) - were nourished by a potent amalgam of classical, medieval, and pre-humanist sources. Just as Latin humanist comedy depended heavily upon Plautus and Terence, humanist tragedy drew its inspiration primarily from the nine plays of Seneca. Dramatists also used ancient legends or contemporary history as source material, dramatizing them as Seneca might have done. Some even attempted to outdo Seneca, exaggerating the bloody sensationalism, the bombastic rhetoric, and the insistence on retributive justice for which he was famous. Unlike comedy, which drew its narratives from ordinary life and from love, sex, money, and manners, tragedy was not concerned with human foibles but with distant tragic heroes. The impossible choices faced by larger-than-life men and women whose heroic destinies hung in the balance gave tragedy a considerably shorter shelf-life than comedies. While comedy stayed relevant, tragedy became problematic, evolving into the hybrid genre of tragicomedy by the end of the Quattrocento. "Humanist Tragedy" testifies to the momentous changes in literary and cultural conventions that occurred during the Renaissance.
Shakespeare's Globe Theatre is recognised worldwide as both a monument to and significant producer of the dramatic art of Shakespeare and his contemporaries. But it has established a reputation too for commissioning innovative and distinctive new plays that respond to the unique characteristics and identity of the theatre. This is the first book to focus on the new drama commissioned and produced at the Globe, to analyse how the specific qualities of the venue have shaped those works and to assess the influences of both past and present in the work staged. The author argues that far from being simply a monument to the past, the reconstructed theatre fosters creativity in the present, creativity that must respond to the theatre's characteristic architecture, the complex set of cultural references it carries and the heterogeneous audience it attracts. Just like the reconstructed `wooden O', the Globe's new plays highlight the relevance of the past for the present and give the spectators a prominent position. In examining the score of new plays it has produced since 1995 the author considers how they illuminate issues of staging, space, spectators, identity and history - issues that are key to an understanding of much contemporary theatre. Howard Brenton's In Extremis and Anne Boleyn receive detailed consideration, as examples of richly productive connection between the playwright's creativity and the theatre's potential. For readers interested in new writing for the stage and in the work of one of London's totemic theatre spaces, New Playwriting at Shakespeare's Globe offers a fascinating study of the fruitful influences of both past and present in today's theatre.
Dr Richard Garfield has given Ursula a difficult choice. She is the Mother Superior in waiting of a convent that has been given the opportunity to take part in his revolutionary scientific study. This American study would require that the nuns donate their brains after death to potentially unlock the mysteries of Alzheimer's and dementia. Ursula must weigh up the value of preserving her faith, versus embracing science.The study is agreed and Richard and his team come to the convent every year to test the nuns who are willing to take part. This union will change their lives forever. Drawing on research contained within the book and study Aging with Grace, 27 is an extraordinary examination of a lifestyle in decline, but it could hold the key to the issues of our times - our ageing population and the decline of our minds.
Shakespeare's plays were immensely popular in their own day - so why do we refuse to think of them as mass entertainment? In Pleasing Everyone, author Jeffrey Knapp opens our eyes to the uncanny resemblance between Renaissance drama and the incontrovertibly mass medium of Golden-Age Hollywood cinema. Through fascinating explorations of such famous plays as Hamlet, The Roaring Girl, and The Alchemist, and such celebrated films as Citizen Kane, The Jazz Singer, and City Lights, Knapp challenges some of our most basic assumptions about the relationship between art and mass audiences. Above all, Knapp encourages us to resist the prejudice that mass entertainment necessarily simplifies and cheapens whatever it touches. As Knapp shows, it was instead the ceaseless pressure to please everyone that helped generate the astonishing richness and complexity of Renaissance drama as well as of Hollywood film.
Satoko Shimazaki revisits three centuries of kabuki theater, reframing it as a key player in the formation of an early modern urban identity in Edo Japan and exploring the process that resulted in its re-creation in Tokyo as a national theatrical tradition. Challenging the prevailing understanding of early modern kabuki as a subversive entertainment and a threat to shogunal authority, Shimazaki argues that kabuki instilled a sense of shared history in the inhabitants of Edo (present-day Tokyo) by invoking "worlds," or sekai, derived from earlier military tales, and overlaying them onto the present. She then analyzes the profound changes that took place in Edo kabuki toward the end of the early modern period, which witnessed the rise of a new type of character: the vengeful female ghost. Shimazaki's bold reinterpretation of the history of kabuki centers on the popular ghost play Tokaido Yotsuya kaidan (The Eastern Seaboard Highway Ghost Stories at Yotsuya, 1825) by Tsuruya Nanboku IV. Drawing not only on kabuki scripts but also on a wide range of other sources, from theatrical ephemera and popular fiction to medical and religious texts, she sheds light on the development of the ubiquitous trope of the vengeful female ghost and its illumination of new themes at a time when the samurai world was losing its relevance. She explores in detail the process by which nineteenth-century playwrights began dismantling the Edo tradition of "presenting the past" by abandoning their long-standing reliance on the sekai. She then reveals how, in the 1920s, a new generation of kabuki playwrights, critics, and scholars reinvented the form again, "textualizing" kabuki so that it could be pressed into service as a guarantor of national identity.
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