Thursday, March 21, 2019
Brecht :: essays research papers
It is difficult to imagine a play which is completely prospering in portraying drama as Bertolt Brecht envisioned it to be. For many long time before and since Brecht proposed his theory of Epic Theatre, writers, directors and actors have been focused on the vitality of entertaining the audience, and creating characters with which the spectator advise empathize. Epic Theatre believes that the actor-spectator family should be one of distinct separation, and that the spectator should learn from the actor instead than relate to him. Two contemporary plays that have been written in the lead thirty years which examine and work with Brechtian ideals atomic number 18 Fanshen by David Hare, and The Laramie run across by Moises Kaufman. The question to be examined is whether either of these two plays are altogether successful in achieving what was later called, The Alienation Effect.     Over the line of his career, Brecht developed the criteria for and conditions needed to create Epic Theatre. The role of the audience can be likened to that of a group of college aged students or intellectuals. Brecht believed in the lore of his audience, and their capacity for critical analysis. He detested the trance-like state that an Aristotelian carrying out can lure the audience into. Plays that idealize life and human raceity are appealing to an audience, and this makes it easy for them to identify with the hero, they reach a state of ego oblivion. The spectator becomes one with the actor, and experiences the same fantastical climax that is unattainable in real life.     However, at the end of the performance, the audience has already experienced the      highest aroused climax, the entrepot of which is strung along by the inevitable      plot resolution. The audience has no choice but to leave with the rapidly fading      memory of their d ramatic stimulation and return to the underwhelming reality that      awaits them outside of the theatre. "The task of heroical theatre, Brecht believes, is not so much to develop actions as to represent conditions. plainly to represent does not here signify reproduce in the sense used by theoreticians of Naturalism. Rather, the first point at issue is to exhibit those conditions. (One could just as well say to make them strange(Benjamin 1966, 18-9)"The fraud of epic theatre consists in arousing astonishment rather than EMPATHY." (Benjamin 1966,16) Theatre consists in this in making live representations of reported or invented happenings between human beings and doing so with a view to entertainment.