Rowman and Littlefield International

The Philosophy of Theatre, Drama and Acting

Edited by Tom Stern

2 Reviews

A collection of new essays on the philosophy of theatre and the philosophy of drama, combining historical perspectives and new directions.

Hardback ISBN: 9781783486212 Release date: Dec 2017
£75.00 €105.00 $111.00
Paperback ISBN: 9781783486229 Release date: Nov 2017
£24.95 €34.95 $37.00
Ebook ISBN: 9781783486236 Release date: Nov 2017
£23.95 €33.95 $35.00

Pages: 216


The Philosophy of Theatre, Drama and Acting is the ideal collection for students and scholars of aesthetics, theatre studies and the philosophy of art. Ever since the Greeks, philosophy and theatre have always enjoyed a close and often antagonistic relationship. Yet until recently relatively little scholarly attention has been paid to the relationship between philosophy and theatre, drama or acting. This book offers a collection of new essays by renowned scholars on important topics. It includes a clear account of different contemporary debates and discussions from across the field, and includes coverage of significant figures in the history of philosophy (such as Schlegel, Hegel and Nietzsche) and contemporary philosophical analysis of the nature of theatre, drama and acting, as well as theatre’s relation to philosophy and other arts.

1. Introduction Tom Stern / Part I Historical Perspectives / 2. ‘Hegel’s “Instinct of Reason” and Shakespeare’s The Merchant of Venice: What is a Relevant Aufhebung of Nature? Of Justice?’ Jennifer Ann Bates / 3. The Theatre of Thought: A. W. Schlegel on Modern Drama and Romantic Criticism Kristin Gjesdal / Part II Acting / 4. Nietzsche, the Mask, and the Problem of the Actor Tom Stern / 5. The Image and the Act: Sartre on Dramatic Theatre Lior Levy / 6. Attention to Technique in Theatre Paul Woodruff / 7. Giving Focus Tzachi Zamir / Part III: Theatre as Art / 8. What is the relationship between ‘observed’ and ‘participatory’ performance? James R. Hamilton / 9. Plays are Games, Movies are Pictures: Ludic vs. Pictorial Representation David Z. Saltz / 10. ‘Ideals of Theatrical Art’ Paul Thom

Tom Stern is Senior Lecturer in Philosophy at University College London. He is the author of Philosophy and Theatre: An Introduction (2013).

Kristin Gjesdal, Professor of Philosophy, Temple University, USA; Jennifer Ann Bates, Professor of Philosophy, Duquesne University, USA; Paul Woodruff, Professor of Philosophy, University of Texas Austin, USA; Tzachi Zamir, Associate Professor of English and General & Comparative Literature, Hebrew University Jerusalem, Israel; James R. Hamilton, Professor of Philosophy, University of Kansas, USA; David Saltz, Professor of Theatre and Film Studies, University of Georgia, USA; Paul Thom, Honorary Visiting Professor in the School of Philosophical and Historical Inquiry, University of Sydney, Australia, Lior Levy, Assistant Professor, University of Haifa

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2 Reviews

These astute philosophical reflections ranging over theatre, drama, and acting show just how much current mainstream aesthetics has missed in largely bypassing these topics. The historical section shows that this neglect has not always been in place and the contemporary contributions offer the promise of exciting new lines of thought to explore.

Peter Lamarque, Professor of Philosophy, University of York

A watershed collection of essays. Theatre, drama, and acting are some of the oldest subjects in the history of philosophy, but until very recently such inquiries had long gone dormant. In bringing together the work of these pioneering contemporary philosophers and theatre theorists, Stern's volume reinvigorates the philosophical study of theatre and demonstrates its relevance to scholarship today. Philosophers, theatre artists, and theatre scholars, those new to the field and those already deeply immersed in it, will all be enriched by what they find in these pages.

David Kornhaber, Associate Professor of English and Comparative Literature at the University of Texas at Austin and author of The Birth of Theater from the Spirit of Philosophy: Nietzsche and the Modern Drama

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