Arguments for a Theatre

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Manchester University Press, Nov 15, 1997 - Literary Criticism - 233 pages
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Howard Barker, author of over thirty plays, has long been an implacable foe of the liberal British establishment, and champion of radical theatre world-wide. His best-known plays include The Castle, Scenes from an Execution and The Possibilities. All of his plays are emotionally highly charged, intellectually stimulating and far removed from the theatrical conventions of what he terms ‘the Establishment Theatre’. These fragments, essays, thoughts and poems on the nature of theatre likewise reject the constraints of ‘objective’ academic theatre criticism. They explore the collision (and collusion) of intellect and artistry in the creative act. This book is more than a collection of essays: it is a cultural manifesto for Barker’s own ‘Theatre of Catastrophe’.
 

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Contents

Preface
9
I
17
Conversation with a dead poet
25
Radical elitism in the theatre
32
Notes to The Bite of the Night
38
Honouring the audience
45
The consolations of catastrophe
51
Juha Malmivaaras Scenes from an Execution
61
The state of loss as the end of a dramatic performance
116
On the sickness of the audience
124
The anatomy of a sob
130
On plethora
139
am no playwright
149
Whats new ?
158
Disputing Vanya
168
Creating a death
179

The offer the reward and the need to disappoint
67
The deconsecration of meaning in the Theatre of Catastrophe
79
The cult of accessibility and the Theatre of Obscurity
85
the theatre of moral speculation
91
Recognition as aesthetic paralysis in theatre
109
The Play of Seven Days
190
A conversation with Charles Lamb
207
Afterword David Ian Rabey
223
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Performing Brecht
Margaret Eddershaw
No preview available - 2002
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About the author (1997)


Howard Barker is a dramatist of international standing. His plays hold an increasingly significant place in the world repertoire

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