Theatre of the Oppressed and its Times  book cover
1st Edition

Theatre of the Oppressed and its Times

  • Available for pre-order on June 9, 2023. Item will ship after June 30, 2023
ISBN 9781032350493
June 30, 2023 Forthcoming by Routledge
208 Pages 1 B/W Illustrations

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USD $170.00

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Book Description

Political theatre, like any kind of political action, can only be judged in relation to the political moment in which it tries to intervene. Theatre of the Oppressed was created to fight against dictatorship and an extremely centralized conception of politics. How does it function now, in a time of social media and so-called participatory democracies? 

Providing an in-depth account of the political and cultural context in which Theatre of the Oppressed emerged, this book asks: how do contemporary understandings of concepts like oppression, representation, participation, and emancipation shape Theatre of the Oppressed today? Highlighting the pitfalls of reducing oppression to one-to-one relationships, the book proposes a version of Forum Theatre dramaturgy that portrays oppression as a defining structure of societies. The author also shares specific examples of movements and other organizations that use Theatre of the Oppressed to construct themselves. 

Theatre of the Oppressed and its Times is an essential text for practitioners and scholars of Theatre of the Oppressed, applied theatre practitioners, students, and anyone interested in how theatre can concretely assist in the transformation of the world. 

Table of Contents

Part 1: Criticizing a Critical Theatre  1. For a Political History of Theatre of the Oppressed  2. Theatre of the Oppressed as a Formal Critique of the Brazilian Communist Party  3. Theatre of the Oppressed and Epic Theatre  4. Critiques of Theatre of the Oppressed  5. Theatre of the Oppressed in Neoliberal Times: From Che Guevara to the Uber Driver  6. Notes On Oppression  7. Facilitation/Mechanization  Part 2: On Small Screws and Big Twists  8. What Can Art Do in the Anti-Capitalist Struggle?  Part 3: Are There No Alternatives?  9. "Examples but not models: Against Well-Made TO, and For Well-Adapted TO"  10. The Search for a Subjunctive Theatre  11. Exercises for a More Dialectical Practice of Forum Theatre

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Julian Boal is a teacher, researcher, and practitioner of Theatre of the Oppressed. He has facilitated workshops in more than 25 countries and is pedagogical coordinator of Escola de Teatro Popular.