The book is an insightful and thorough examination of one of the most prominent political dramatists in the US today, Tony Kushner, and his theatricalization of politics. Moreover, it draws heavily on Kushner's wide range of themes and techniques.Read more...
The book is an insightful and thorough examination of one of the most prominent political dramatists in the US today, Tony Kushner, and his theatricalization of politics. Moreover, it draws heavily on Kushner's wide range of themes and techniques. As such, it will be beneficial for graduate students and scholars who are concerned with the realm of contemporary American drama at the threshold of the twenty-first century. In addition, the book will appeal to anyone who wants a deeper understanding of Kushner and his major influences such as Bertolt Brecht, and will also be valuable for readers with a general interest in American drama.This book is primarily concerned with exploring and analyzing political discourse as dramatized in the work of Tony Kushner. The author's point of departure is the concept of political theatre as developed by Erwin Piscator and Bertolt Brecht. This theoretical exploration serves a double purpose: first, it is meant to provide a statement of the definitions and concepts central to this study, such as political discourse, political theatre, and postmodern theatre; second, it offers the tools of analysis by which to read and analyze Tony Kushner's postmodern, politically-oriented texts. Through this, the book defines the major features of Kushner's postmodern theatre and explores how he theatricalizes politics.American drama in the 1980s and the 1990s witnessed a noticeable thematic shift from the exclusively personal plays and musicals that once dominated American theatre for a long period of time to an increasing number of plays which put greater emphasis on exploring issues and questions of socio-political interest. As a result of this thematic shift, the predominantly private settings and familial character relationships of the traditional family play have been replaced by a great variety of public settings and non-familial characters. Tony Kushner's theatre is a pioneering attempt in this respect. In Kushner's theatre, there is no room for the traditional family plays which dominated the American stage in the 1960s and 1970s. Kushner has found that there is not enough political discourse in contemporary American Theatre. For this reason, he writes his plays to shed special light on the politics of American society in the 1980s, the 1990s, and in the beginnings of the 21st century.
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