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Reinelt, Janelle G
The political theatre of David Edgar : negotiation and retrieval / Janelle Reinelt and Gerald Hewitt
Cambridge, UK ; New York : Cambridge University Press, c2011
book jacket
Location Call Number Status
 4th Floor  PR6055.D44 Z84 2011    AVAILABLE
Subject Edgar, David, 1948- -- Criticism and interpretation
Subject(s) Political plays, English -- History and criticism
Politics and literature -- Great Britain -- History -- 20th century
Physical Description x, 313 p. : ill. ; 24 cm
Summary "David Edgar's writings address the most basic questions of how humans organize and govern themselves in modern societies. This study brings together the disciplines of political philosophy and theatre studies to approach the leading British playwright as a political writer and a public social critic. Edgar uses theatre as a powerful tool of public discourse, an aesthetic modality for engaging with and thinking/feeling through the most pressing social issues of the day. In this he is a supreme rationalist: he deploys character, plot and language to explore ideas, to make certain kinds of discursive cases and model hypothetical alternatives. Reinelt and Hewitt analyze twelve of Edgar's most important plays, including Maydays and Pentecost and also provide detailed discussions of key performances and critical reception to illustrate the playwright's artistic achievement in relation to his contributions as a public figure in British cultural life"-- Provided by publisher
"Political Commitment and Performative Practice 'Anybody who used to call themselves a Marxist now has fairly intense self-definitional problems'.- David Edgar (1994) 'He is an optimist who has been around'. - John Peters (1994BIB-174) Of the distinctive voices in the contemporary British theatre, David Edgar's provides the most comprehensive articulation of major political questions. His career spans more than four eventful and politically complex decades, and encompasses every variety of writing for performance including agitprop and touring pieces; community plays; radio, film and television plays; and large-scale plays produced in the major national venues such as the Royal Shakespeare Company and the National Theatre. In addition, Edgar has maintained a high profile as a public intellectual, engaging in depth with a wide variety of political issues through newspaper opinion pages, journal essays, and book reviews, as well as via frequent public speaking engagements before a variety of organizations including the Commission on Racial Equality; the Royal Society of Arts, Manufacturing and Commerce; the Fabian Society; and the annual Marxism conference"-- Provided by publisher
Note Includes bibliographical references (p. 295-307) and index
Machine generated contents note: 1. Introduction: political commitment and performative practice; 2. Intervening in public discourse: Edgar as discursive arbiter; 3. Things fall apart: after ideology in Continental Divide and Maydays; 4. Governing memberships: Destiny, Playing with Fire and Testing the Echo; 5. A legend in your own time: The Jail Diary of Albie Sachs, Mary Barnes and Albert Speer; 6. Socialism's aftermath: The Shape of the Table, Pentecost and The Prisoner's Dilemma; 7. Conclusion: negotiating retrieval
Series Cambridge studies in modern theatre
Alternate Author Hewitt, Gerald

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