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Theater - History and Criticism

Theater - History and Criticism Book List

Cover of 'Taking Liberties'

Taking Liberties
Gender, Transgressive Patriotism, and Polish Drama, 1786–1989
By Halina Filipowicz

Moving beyond a traditional study of Polish dramatic literature, Taking Liberties is a masterful intellectual history of what may be called patriotism without borders: a nonnational form of loyalty compatible with the universal principles and practices of democracy and human rights.

Cover of 'In the Shadows of Romance'

In the Shadows of Romance
Romantic Tragic Drama in Germany, England, and France
By Jeffrey N. Cox

In the Shadows of Romance examines the role of the tragedy in Germany, England and France during the romantic literary period. Cox responds to the prevailing dismissive view of the romantic tragic drama, effectively arguing for its place as expressions of the whole romantic movement and as a vital chapter in the history of Western literature.

Cover of 'Resistance on the National Stage'

Resistance on the National Stage
Theater and Politics in Late New Order Indonesia
By Michael H. Bodden

Resistance on the National Stage analyzes the ways in which, between 1985 and 1998, modern theater prac­titioners in Indonesia contributed to a rising movement of social protest against the long-governing New Order regime of President Suharto.

Winner of the 2008 Benda Prize
Cover of 'The Komedie Stamboel'

The Komedie Stamboel
Popular Theater in Colonial Indonesia, 1891–1903
By Matthew Isaac Cohen

Originating in 1891 in the port city of Surabaya, the Komedie Stamboel, or Istanbul-style theater, toured colonial Indonesia, Singapore, and Malaysia by rail and steamship. The company performed musical versions of the Arabian Nights and European fairy tales and operas such as Sleeping Beauty and Aida, as well as Indian and Persian romances, Southeast Asian chronicles, true crime stories, and political allegories.

Cover of 'The Practical Shakespeare'

The Practical Shakespeare
The Plays in Practice and on the Page
By Colin Butler

A comprehensive treatment of Shakespeare’s plays, The Practical Shakespeare: The Plays in Practice and on the Page illuminates for a general audience how and why the plays work so well.

Ohioana Book Award Finalist
Cover of 'Coal and Culture'

Coal and Culture
Opera Houses in Appalachia
By William Faricy Condee

Opera houses were fixtures of Appalachian life from the end of the Civil War through the 1920s. The only book on opera houses that stresses their cultural context, Condee’s unique study will interest cultural geographers, scholars of Appalachian studies, and all those who appreciate the gaudy diversity of the American scene.

Finalist for the 2006 Harry J. Benda Prize in Southeast Asian Studies
Cover of 'Power Plays'

Power Plays
Wayang Golek Puppet Theater of West Java
By Andrew N. Weintraub

Based on ethnographic fieldwork spanning twenty years, Power Plays is the first scholarly book in English on wayang golek, the Sundanese rod-puppet theater of West Java. It is a detailed and lively account of the ways in which performers of this major Asian theatrical form have engaged with political discourses in Indonesia. Wayang golek has shaped, as well, the technological and commercial conditions of art and performance in a modernizing society.

Cover of 'Directing Shakespeare'

Directing Shakespeare
A Scholar Onstage
By Sidney Homan

An impossible question from a Chinese actor—“Why is Shakespeare eternal?”—drove Sidney Homan after fifty years in the theater to ponder just what makes Shakespeare...well, Shakespeare. The result, Directing Shakespeare, reflects the two worlds in which Homan operates—as a scholar and teacher on campus, and as a director and actor in professional and university theaters.

Rated ‘Outstanding’ in the 2004 edition of University Press Books Selected for Public and Secondary School Libraries
Cover of 'Shakespeare at the Cineplex'

Shakespeare at the Cineplex
The Kenneth Branagh Era
By Samuel Crowl

Samuel Crowl's Shakespeare at the Cineplex: The Kenneth Branagh Era is the first thorough exploration of the fifteen major Shakespeare films released since the surprising success of Kenneth Branagh's Henry V (1989). Crowl presents the rich variety of these films in the “long decade: between the fall of the Berlin Wall and the terrorist attacks on September 11, 2001.”

Cover of 'Oral Literature and Performance in Southern Africa'

Oral Literature and Performance in Southern Africa
Edited by Duncan Brown

This book draws together contributions from literary studies, anthropology, ethnomusicology, and African language studies to analyze the complex functioning of oral texts and models in differing contexts. It examines the continuing role of orality in modern society, the adaptation of oral models to printed forms, and the ability of oral forms to 'talk back' to the technology of print.

Cover of 'Shakespeare Observed'

Shakespeare Observed
Studies in Performance on Stage and Screen
By Samuel Crowl

In this lively study of both modern film and stage productions of Shakespeare, Samuel Crowl provides fascinating insights into the ways in which these productions have been influenced by one another as well as by contemporary developments in critical approaches to Shakespeare's plays.

Cover of 'Shakespeare in Production'

Shakespeare in Production
Whose History?
By H. R. Coursen

Shakespeare in Production examines a number of plays in context. Included are the 1936 Romeo and Juliet, unpopular with critics of filmed Shakespeare, but very much a “photoplay” if its time; the opening sequences of filmed Hamlets which span more than seventy years; The Comedy of Errors on television, where production of this script is almost impossible; and the Branagh Much Ado About Nothing, a “popular” film discussed in the context of comedy as a genre.

Cover of 'Theater and Martial Arts in West Sumatra'

Theater and Martial Arts in West Sumatra
Randai and Silek of the Minangkabau
By Kirstin Pauka

Randai, the popular folk theater tradition of the Minangkabau ethnic group in West Sumatra, has evolved to include influences of martial arts, storytelling, and folk songs. Theater and Martial Arts in West Sumatra describes the origin, development, and cultural background of randai and highlights two recent developments: the emergence of female performers and modern staging techniques.

Cover of 'Teaching Shakespeare into the Twenty-First Century'

Teaching Shakespeare into the Twenty-First Century
Edited by Ronald E. Salomone and James E. Davis

Shakespeare is a central shaping and defining figure in our culture. His plays are being taught, filmed, and performed every day in many places and in most of the world's languages. At the same time, teachers and students from junior high through the early undergraduate years often struggle with the Bard in discomfort and negativity that can only be counter-productive. Teaching Shakespeare into the Twenty-First Century is by teachers and for teachers.

Cover of 'Sight Unseen'

Sight Unseen
Beckett, Pinter, Stoppard, and Other Contemporary Dramatists on Radio
By Elissa S. Guralnick

In Sight Unseen radio drama, a genre traditionally dismissed as popular culture, is celebrated as high art. The radio plays discussed here range from the conventional (John Arden’s Pearl) to the docudramatic (David Rudkin’s Cries from Casement), from the curtly conversational (Harold Pinter’s A Slight Ache) to the virtually operatic (Robert Ferguson’s Transfigured Night), testifying to radio drama’s variety and literary stature.