A Formalist Theatre

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University of Pennsylvania Press, 1990 - Literary Criticism - 178 pages
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Michael Kirby was the most outspoken exponent of formalist theater and founded the Structuralist Workshop in the 1960s to explore this style of performance. He called it "Structuralist" (capitalizing the term popularized by Levi-Strauss) to make a distinction between his emphasis on spatial and temporal form (i.e. structure) and the historical association of formalism with styles and abstraction. The book is based on articles written over the course of a decade for the Drama Review, a quarterly journal Kirby edited for fourteen years. In Part I, "Formalist Analysis," analytical continua are developed and applied to acting, style, and structure; Kirby devotes Part II, "The Social Context," to an analysis of the current state of criticism, theatre as a political tool, and the current state of the avant-garde; Part III, "Structuralist Theatre," describes performances produced by Kirby under the auspices of his structuralist workshop as well as several Structuralist films.
 

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Contents

part onei formallst analysls
3
chapter two the structure of performance
21
chapter four style as perceptual state
52
the socialcontext
67
chapter six the question of efficacy
84
structurallst theatre
121
chapter ten structuralist film
142
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About the author (1990)

Michael Kirby (1931-1997) was Professor of Drama at New York University. He wrote several groundbreaking books and was editor of The Drama Review from 1969 to 1986.

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