The Semiotics Of Performance

Hardcover (Print)
Buy New
Buy New from
Used and New from Other Sellers
Used and New from Other Sellers
from $41.80
Usually ships in 1-2 business days
(Save 23%)
Other sellers (Hardcover)
  • All (15) from $41.80   
  • New (10) from $43.48   
  • Used (5) from $41.80   


"The book... succeeds at refining elements in the problem that semiotics and theater represent to and for one another." —Choice

"The Semiotics of Performance surprisingly retains its revelatory freshness, and actually opens up areas of reseach that could very well supply new incentives for further probing into what semiotics can offer to the study of theatre." —Theatre Survey

Indiana University Press

Read More Show Less

Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780253316868
  • Publisher: Indiana University Press
  • Publication date: 3/1/1993
  • Series: Advances in Semiotics Series
  • Pages: 280
  • Product dimensions: 6.12 (w) x 9.25 (h) x 0.69 (d)

Meet the Author

MARCO DE MARINIS is a Professor at the Institute of Communications and Theater at the University of Bologna. He is the author of several books and the editor of Versus. ÁINE O’HEALY is Director of European Studies and Assistant Professor of Italian at Loyola Marymount University. She is author of numerous works on contemporary Italian literature and cinema.

Indiana University Press

Read More Show Less

Table of Contents

Introduction: Theater Or Semiotics
0.1. The Textual Analysis of Performance
0.2. From Structuralism to the Pragmatics of the Text
0.3. Enunciation, Intertextuality, and Reception
0.4. Textual Analysis as a Multidisciplinary Approach
0.5. Epistemological Limits
0.6. Semiotics and Theater

One. Dramatic Text and Mise-en-Scene
1.1. Reasons for a Misunderstanding
1.2. A Critique of the Conception of the Dramatic Text as a "Constant" or "Deep Structure" of Performance
1.3. Language and Metalanguage, Text and Metatext
1.4. Virtual Mise-en-Scene and Real Mise-en-Scene
1.4.1. The Residue-Text: A Particular Case?
1.5. The Irreversibility of Theatrical Transcoding
1.6. Toward a Definition of the Dramatic Genre
1.7. Dramatic Discourse
1.8. The Dramatic Text as "Instructions for Use"

Two. The Performance Text
2.1. Performance as Text
2.2. Theatrical Performance: A Definition
2.2.1. Technical Reproducibility, Repeatability, Duplicatability
2.2.2. Theater and Everyday Life
2.3. Completeness and Coherence of the Performance Text
2.3.1. The Delimitation of the Performance Text
2.3.2. Levels of Coherence in the Performance Text
2.4 The Performance Text: Between Presence and Absence
2.4.1. "Present" Performances and "Absent" Performances
2.4.2. Ruffini: Contextual Restoration
2.4.3. Description/Transcription
2.5. The Double Heterogeneity of the Performance Text
2.6. Performance Texts Shorter or Longer than One Performance
2.6.1. Partial Texts and Segments of the Performance Text
2.6.2 Groups and Classes of Performance Texts
2.7. Co-textual and Contextual Aspects

Three. The Textual Structure of Performance
3.1. Multiple Systems and Single Systems
3.2. Degrees of Dynamism in the Textual Structure of Performance
3.3. Partial Structures and Macrostructures
3.4. Multiple Interpretations, Multiple Structures
3.5. Analysis/Reading/Criticism

Four. Performance Codes and Theatrical Conventions
4.1. The Concept of "Code" in Relation to Theatrical Performance
4.2. Decoding, Comprehension, Interpretation
4.3. Classification according to Codes and Classification according to Expressive Material
4.4. Theatrical and Nontheatrical Meanings
4.5. Performance Codes (in the Strict Sense)
4.6. Theatrical Conventions
4.6.1 General Conventions
4.6.2. Particular conventions
4.6.3. Distinctive Conventions
4.6.4. Notes and Observations on the Proposed Classification
4.7. The Performance Text as an Example of Invention
4.7.1. Transformation and Institution of the Code
4.7.2. The Performance Text as an Aesthetic Text

Five. Performance Text, Cultural Context, and Intertextual Practices
5.1. The Performance Text in the Genral Test: The Cultural Roots of Codes and Conventions
5.2. Aesthetic and Nonaesthetic Codes: From Culture to Art and Back
5.3. Francastel: The Aesthetic Text as Montage of Cultural Objects
5.3.1. The Example of the Mythological Festival
5.4. Types of Theatrical Intertextuality

Six. Toward a Pragmatics of Theatrical Communication
6.1. The Performance Context
6.2. Communication in the Theater
6.3. The Kind and Degree of Communication in Performance
6.4. Theatrical Manipulation
6.5. Action/Fiction: The Performance Test as a Macro-Speech Act
6.6. Theater Beyond Simulation and Negation

Seven. The Spectator’s Task
7.1. The Current State of Research on Theatrical Reception
7.2. Research on Reception outside of Theater
7.2.1. The Konstanz School and "Rezeptionsasthetik"
7.2.2 T.A. van Dijk and W. Kintsch: The Cognitive Processes of Discourse Comprehension
7.3. The Model Spectator: "Closed" Spectators and "Open" Spectators
7.4. Theatrical Competence
7.5. Theatrical Genre as a Textual Type
7.6. Pragmatic Aspects of Theatrical Genres
7.7. Avant-Garde Theater as Metalinguistic Manipulation of the Performance Context
7.8. Grammaticality, Acceptability, and Appropriateness of the Performance Text


Indiana University Press

Read More Show Less

Customer Reviews

Be the first to write a review
( 0 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star


4 Star


3 Star


2 Star


1 Star


Your Rating:

Your Name: Create a Pen Name or

Barnes & Review Rules

Our reader reviews allow you to share your comments on titles you liked, or didn't, with others. By submitting an online review, you are representing to Barnes & that all information contained in your review is original and accurate in all respects, and that the submission of such content by you and the posting of such content by Barnes & does not and will not violate the rights of any third party. Please follow the rules below to help ensure that your review can be posted.

Reviews by Our Customers Under the Age of 13

We highly value and respect everyone's opinion concerning the titles we offer. However, we cannot allow persons under the age of 13 to have accounts at or to post customer reviews. Please see our Terms of Use for more details.

What to exclude from your review:

Please do not write about reviews, commentary, or information posted on the product page. If you see any errors in the information on the product page, please send us an email.

Reviews should not contain any of the following:

  • - HTML tags, profanity, obscenities, vulgarities, or comments that defame anyone
  • - Time-sensitive information such as tour dates, signings, lectures, etc.
  • - Single-word reviews. Other people will read your review to discover why you liked or didn't like the title. Be descriptive.
  • - Comments focusing on the author or that may ruin the ending for others
  • - Phone numbers, addresses, URLs
  • - Pricing and availability information or alternative ordering information
  • - Advertisements or commercial solicitation


  • - By submitting a review, you grant to Barnes & and its sublicensees the royalty-free, perpetual, irrevocable right and license to use the review in accordance with the Barnes & Terms of Use.
  • - Barnes & reserves the right not to post any review -- particularly those that do not follow the terms and conditions of these Rules. Barnes & also reserves the right to remove any review at any time without notice.
  • - See Terms of Use for other conditions and disclaimers.
Search for Products You'd Like to Recommend

Recommend other products that relate to your review. Just search for them below and share!

Create a Pen Name

Your Pen Name is your unique identity on It will appear on the reviews you write and other website activities. Your Pen Name cannot be edited, changed or deleted once submitted.

Your Pen Name can be any combination of alphanumeric characters (plus - and _), and must be at least two characters long.

Continue Anonymously

    If you find inappropriate content, please report it to Barnes & Noble
    Why is this product inappropriate?
    Comments (optional)