Dramas Of Culture

Overview

Dramas of Culture is shaped by twelve carefully interwoven interdisciplinary essays on the role of performance as inscribed within contemporary cultural debate. Part One addresses the recent cultural turn in scholarship and public affairs and offers three provocative discussions of its genealogy, goals, and shortcomings. Underpinning these arguments are the key dramatic elements of language, performativity, and spectacle. Part Two stresses the constitutive roles of scene and setting, melodrama, and tragic ...

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Overview

Dramas of Culture is shaped by twelve carefully interwoven interdisciplinary essays on the role of performance as inscribed within contemporary cultural debate. Part One addresses the recent cultural turn in scholarship and public affairs and offers three provocative discussions of its genealogy, goals, and shortcomings. Underpinning these arguments are the key dramatic elements of language, performativity, and spectacle. Part Two stresses the constitutive roles of scene and setting, melodrama, and tragic conflict for literary theory, political thought, and dialectical philosophy, each with direct bearings on contemporary cultural studies. Parts Three and Four turn to the intellectual and cultural significance of specific plays in the Western repertoire. Part Three examines several major efforts to rethink the nature of tragedy as a dramatic genre, emphasizing its capacity to reveal the fragility and provisionality of culture, while Part Four focuses on prominent examples of the shifting relations among drama, history, and processes of cultural change.

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Editorial Reviews

Gary Shapiro
Twelve astute critics assess the cultural turn in literary and historical studies. Focusing on philosophers and theorists ranging from Edmund Burke to Martin Heidegger, and writers and artists from Sophocles and Shakespeare to Marcel Duchamp, these engaging essays rethink questions of history, performance, and dramatic theory in the perspective of recent debates in cultural politics. Together the contributors stage and articulate major themes, including the conflicting emancipatory and oppressive potentials of culture, the multiplicity of possible dramatizations of history, and the philosophy and practice of performance. Informed by current literary, philosophical, and rhetorical theory, the essays constitute a rich source for readers exploring the conjunction of culture, drama, and performance.
Jonathan Hart
This splendid collection explores the configurations of contemporary culture from many points of view in terms of literature, philosophy, and history. The drama of culture and the culture of drama become a main intersection for this exploration. The editors have done a wonderful job bringing together distinguished authors to examine the roles of cultural poetics, dramatic theory, the history play, and performance from the Greeks through Shakespeare and Molière to Lorca.
Herman Rapaport
For readers interested in drama, performance, and culture, this is a major collection of essays that will be required reading for some time to come.
Herbert Lindenberger
Dramas of Culture employs a vocabulary associated with drama, as well as with narrative, to achieve insights into cultural history and theory. Drawing upon examples from Sophocles to the postmodern, and from art, literature and philosophy, these essays are notable at once for their theoretical depth and for the precision with which they treat individual works.
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Product Details

Meet the Author

Wayne Jeffrey Froman is associate professor of philosophy at George Mason University. John Burt Foster, Jr., is professor of English at George Mason University.

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Table of Contents

Part 1 General Introduction Part 2 Part One: Second Thoughts on the Cultural Turn Chapter 3 Introduction Chapter 4 1. A Culture of Inclusion: Politics and Poetry Chapter 5 2. The Narrative of Culture: "Burkean" Perspectives Chapter 6 3. The Spectacle of Cultural Studies: Marcel Duchamp and the Return of the Repressed Part 7 Part Two: Dramatic Categories in Cultural Discourse Chapter 8 Introduction Chapter 9 4. Setting the Scene: Judging Kenneth Burke Judging Chapter 10 5. Politics as Melodrama: Revolutions, Empty Signifiers, and the Political Sublime Chapter 11 6. Gendering Tragic Conflict: Hegel's Antigone and the Vicissitudes of the Dialectic Part 12 Part Three: Rethinking Tragedy Chapter 13 Introduction Chapter 14 7. Heidegger's Antigone: From Agonistic Nietzscheanism to Reconciliation with Otherness Chapter 15 8. Characterless Tragedy: The Limits of Philosophical Catharsis Chapter 16 9. Choreography of Fate: Lorca's Reconfiguration of the Tragic Part 17 Part Four: Staging History, Posthistory, Parahistory Chapter 18 Introduction Chapter 19 10. Shakespeare's Richard II: History as Shadowplay Chapter 20 11. Molière's Don Juan: Breaking Promises, But Not a Date with History Chapter 21 12. Heiner Müller's Parahistory: Beyond Marx and Brecht

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