Analytic Philosophy and the World of the Play: 1st Edition (Paperback) book cover

Analytic Philosophy and the World of the Play

1st Edition

By Michael Y. Bennett


156 pages

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Paperback: 9780367509699
pub: 2020-04-01
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Hardback: 9781138239920
pub: 2017-06-09
eBook (VitalSource) : 9781315294735
pub: 2017-07-14
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Theatrical characters’ dual existence on stage and in text presents a unique, challenging case for the analytical philosopher.

Analytic Philosophy and the World of the Play re-examines the ontological status of theatre and its fictional objects through the "possible worlds" thesis, arguing that theatre is not a mirror of our world, but a re-creation of it. Taking a fresh look at theatre’s key elements, including the hotly contested relationships between character and actor; onstage and offstage "worlds"; and the play-text and performance, Michael Y. Bennett presents a radical new way of understanding the world of the play.

Table of Contents



FOREWORD by Marvin Carlson

INTRODUCTION Theatre and the Mirror of Nature


PART I Exposing the Problem and Proposing a Solution

1 Theatrical Names and Reference: Dialectical-Synecdochic Objects and "Re-Creation"

2 The World of the Play: Theatre as "Re-Creation"

PART II Applying the (Proposed) Solution to the Problems

3 "Liveness"?: The Presumption of Dramatic and Theatrical "Liveness"

4 Boundedness of (Fictional) Theatre to our (Real) World: Actor and Audience Co-Existence

5 Identity across "Possible Worlds": "The World Beyond" the Play


#1 "The Purpose of Playing": Why Go to the Theatre?

#2 Where the World of Theatre Ends: Performance Art

#3 Make-Believe

AFTERWORD by James R. Hamilton



About the Author

Michael Y. Bennett is Associate Professor of English and affiliated faculty in Philosophy at the University of Wisconsin-Whitewater.

About the Series

Routledge Advances in Theatre & Performance Studies

This series is our home for cutting-edge, upper-level scholarly studies and edited collections. Considering theatre and performance alongside topics such as religion, politics, gender, race, ecology, and the avant-garde, titles are characterized by dynamic interventions into established subjects and innovative studies on emerging topics.

Learn more…

Subject Categories

BISAC Subject Codes/Headings:
PERFORMING ARTS / Theater / General
PHILOSOPHY / Movements / Analytic