African popular theatre: from pre-colonial times to the present day

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J. Currey, 1995 - Literary Criticism - 278 pages
Despite the surge of recent work on African popular culture, this is the first comprehensive survey of popular theatre. David Kerr's book provides a survey of theatre forms in sub-Saharan Africa from precolonial times to the present. The major genres of popular theatre are set in their historical and social contexts, with an emphasis on continuity over time.

The unusual feature of this book is that it concentrates on modes of performance that are broadly popular with African citizens, rather than on elitist theatre. Popular theatre is interpreted widely to include not only conventional drama, but also dances, mimes, dramatized storytelling, masquerades, improvised urban vaudeville theatre, and the theatre of resistance and social action. The book also considers theatre embedded in the modern media of film, radio, and television.

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About the author (1995)

DAVID KERR has been involved in the practice and theoretical analysis of African theatre since 1969, both within and outside universities in Malawi and Zambia. He is now Associate Professor of English in the University of Botswana.