Monday, June 2, 2008

The Necessity of Theater

Paul Woodruff, a professor at the University of Texas at Austin, has written a book that was reviewed this past week in the Sunday Times Book Review. The Necessity of Theater: the Art of Watching and Being Watched posits that “People need theater…to secure our bare, naked cultural survival.” The text is loosely modeled on the Poetics and, like Aristotle, Woodruff breaks down and defines what he considers the five kinds of theater (“mimetic,” “everyday,” “extreme,” “art” and “theater of presence”). Leah Hagar Cohen’s critique is thorough, and I look forward to reading the book (once I can afford it). If anyone has a chance to read it, please feel free to throw in your two cents about its content.

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