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The Total Work of Art
     

The Total Work of Art

by Matthew Wilson Smith
 

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Richard Wagner, Oskar Schlemmer, Bertolt Brecht, Leni Riefenstahl, Walt Disney, Andy Warhol, Bill Gates: these disparate figures all represent important stages in the development of the total work of art. A utopian form that strives to unify the arts, the total work of art has helped to shape modern practices of theatre, architecture, music, literature and film. And

Overview

Richard Wagner, Oskar Schlemmer, Bertolt Brecht, Leni Riefenstahl, Walt Disney, Andy Warhol, Bill Gates: these disparate figures all represent important stages in the development of the total work of art. A utopian form that strives to unify the arts, the total work of art has helped to shape modern practices of theatre, architecture, music, literature and film. And yet its impact on modern culture is still only partially understood. Going against the grain of most scholarship on the total work of art, this wide-ranging study stresses the importance of developments in technology and mass culture for an understanding of the genre. Comparing Bayreuth and Disneyland, Brecht's Epic Theatre and Riefenstahl's Triumph of the Will, the Bauhaus Totaltheater and Warhol's "Exploding Plastic Inevitable," Matthew Wilson Smith argues that the total work of art has as much to do with mass media as with high art, with commercial spectacle as with music drama. The Total Work of Art will be of interest to students across a broad range of disciplines, including theatre and performance studies, history of art, music history, cultural studies, and comparative modernism.

Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
'Smith's writing is adventurous and stimulating... fascinating reading.' - Studies in Musical Theatre

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780415977951
Publisher:
Taylor & Francis
Publication date:
10/01/2006
Pages:
240
Product dimensions:
6.80(w) x 9.70(h) x 0.05(d)

Meet the Author

Matthew Smith is Assistant Professor of English at Boston University.

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