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A New Kind of Public

Community, Solidarity, and Political Economy in New Deal Cinema, 1935-1948

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Graham Cassano

In 1936, director John Ford claimed to be making movies for “a new kind of public” that wanted more honest pictures. Graham Cassano’s A New Kind of Public: Community, solidarity, and political economy in New Deal cinema, 1935-1948 argues that this new kind of public was forged in the fires of class struggle and economic calamity. Those struggles appeared in Hollywood productions, as the movies themselves tried to explain the causes and consequence of the Great Depression. Using the tools of critical Marxism and cultural theory, Cassano surveys Hollywood’s political economic explanations and finds a field of symbolic struggle in which radical visions of solidarity and conflict competed with the dominant class ideology for the loyalty of this new audience.

Acts of Resistance in Late-Modernist Theatre

Writing and Directing in Contemporary Theatre Practice

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Richard Murphet

In Acts of Resistance in Late-Modernist Theatre, Richard Murphet presents a close analysis of the theatre practice of two ground-breaking artists – Richard Foreman and Jenny Kemp – active over the late twentieth and the early twenty-first century. In addition, he tracks the development of a form of ‘epileptic’ writing over the course of his own career as writer/director.
Murphet argues that these three auteurs have developed subversive alternatives to the previously dominant forms of dramatic realism in order to re-think the relationship between theatre and reality. They write and direct their own work, and their artistic experimentation is manifest in the tension created between their content and their form. Murphet investigates how the works are made, rather than focusing upon an interpretation of their meaning. Through an examination of these artists, we gain a deeper understanding of a late modernist paradigm shift in theatre practice.

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Edited by David A. Crespy and Lincoln Konkle

Edward Albee as Theatrical and Dramatic Innovator offers eight essays and a major interview by important scholars in the field that explore this three-time Pulitzer prize-winning playwright’s innovations as a dramatist and theatrical artist. They consider not only Albee’s award-winning plays and his contributions to the evolution of modern American drama, but also his important influence to the American theatre as a whole, his connections to art and music, and his international influence in Spanish and Russian theatre.

Contributors: Jackson R. Bryer, Milbre Burch, David A. Crespy, Ramon Espejo-Romero, Nathan Hedman, Lincoln Konkle, Julia Listengarten, David Marcia, Ashley Raven, Parisa Shams, Valentine Vasak

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Edited by Charlotte A. Lerg and Heléna Tóth

Transatlantic Revolutionary Cultures, 1789-1861 argues that the revolutionary era constituted a coherent chapter in transatlantic history and that individual revolutions were connected to a broader, transatlantic and transnational frame. As a composite, the essays place instances of political upheaval during the long nineteenth century in Europe and the Americas in a common narrative and offer a new interpretation on their seeming asynchrony. In the age of revolutions the formation of political communities and cultural interactions were closely connected over time and space. Reciprocal connections arose from discussions on the nature of history, deliberations about constitutional models, as well as the reception of revolutions in popular culture. These various levels of cultural and intellectual interchange we term “transatlantic revolutionary cultures.”

Contributors are: Ulrike Bock, Anne Bruch, Peter Fischer, Mischa Honeck, Raphael Hörmann, Charlotte A. Lerg, Marc H. Lerner, Michael L. Miller, Timothy Mason Roberts, and Heléna Tóth.

Spike Milligan's Accordion

The Distortion of Time and Space in The Goon Show

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Rick Cousins

“It’s all rather confusing, really” was one of the catchphrases used by Spike Milligan in his ground-breaking radio comedy program The Goon Show. In a series of mock-epics broadcast over the course of a decade, Milligan treated listeners to a cosmology governed by confusion, contradictions, fluidity and uncertainty. In The Goon Show’s universe, time and space expand and contract seemingly at will and without notice.

The worldview featured in The Goon Show looked both backward and forward: backward, in the sense that it paralleled strategies used by schoolchildren to understand time and space; forward, in the ways it anticipated and prefigured a number of key features of postmodern thought.

Winner of the Ann Saddlemyer Award 2017 of the Canadian Association for Theatre Research.