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THTRFLM 1T03 (114)
Lecture 5

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Theatre & Film Studies
Peter Cockett

T&F 1T03 week 5(1): Mother Courage  02/05/2014 Cultural context • Brecht: a German Marxist, exiled in 1933 • Mother Courage written in 1939, after Germany’s invasion of Poland Realist vs. Epic Theatre • Social Realism places moral ideals in the context of the real world (Ibsen) • Epic Theatre challenges the very conception of the real world (Brecht) Goals of Epic Theatre • To show how social reality is constructed • To make the audience aware of the social consequences of that construction • How/why has the world been constructed in this way? • To prompt the audience to take charge of the construction of their world • Opening up potential for it to be changed Aristotle and Brecht • From “The Modern Theatre is the Epic Theatre” – Brecht • Aristotle’s Drama (Realism): • Imitation of an action • Doing • Brecht’s Epic: • Narration & Imitation • Doing and Telling • The doing also creates critical perspective (action ‘made strange’) o Way that actors act creates political perspective TheAlienation Effect • Verfremdungseffekt: the effect of making strange • Does not aim to alienate audience • Taking something that seems everyday and reconsidering it Production Elements • Realism: • Create illusion of reality • Unified stage picture • Hide the means of production • Epic: • Anti-illusionistic; obvious that this is a play • Juxtaposition of elements, which comment on each other • Means of production revealed o Best example is the use of theatrical lights o Lights are not hidden, therefore making people aware of the artistry Acting • Realism: • Identify with character, especially with emoti
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