Catalogue

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Contemporary Polish theater and drama (1956-1984) /
E.J. Czerwiński.
imprint
New York : Greenwood Press, c1988.
description
xix, 155 p. --
ISBN
0313244022 (lib. bdg. : alk. paper)
format(s)
Book
Holdings
More Details
imprint
New York : Greenwood Press, c1988.
isbn
0313244022 (lib. bdg. : alk. paper)
issn
0738-9345
general note
Includes index.
catalogue key
3546945
 
Bibliography: p. [131]-144.
A Look Inside
Full Text Reviews
Appeared in Choice on 1989-06:
This survey is aimed at nonspecialists and "uninformed Western critics," but it would be tactless to speak of Czerwinski's success in carrying out his mission. Although he comes up with some novel and provocative readings, a less hurried discussion would have served his case better. His impatience is evident in such statements as: "Because {Witold} Gombrowicz deals with so many themes, it is impossible to explore each one satisfactorily." The subjects of this study are major Polish playwrights, directors, and theater critics. Except for Tadeusz Rozewicz's Pulapka (Warszawa, 1982; tr., The Trap, 1984), Czerwinski's focus is on plays published before 1980. This is to be regretted because Ireneusz Iredynski and Slawomir Mrozek, for example, published some of their most important plays in the early 1980s. Czerwinski takes no notice of the fact that Iredynski died in 1985, that Gombrowicz's fourth play, Historia (Krakow, 1981), was discovered after his death in 1969 (not in 1967, as he repeatedly claims), or that the Solidarity Renewal (1980-81) has profoundly changed Polish theater. The book could also have profited from attention to the scholarly literature that has been published during the past 20 years. The author most often listed in the "Secondary Sources" is Czerwinski, with 14 entries. Czerwinski's book makes pronouncements and offers judgments instead of arguing and reasoning. One can only hope for a more thorough and sustained study by him in the future. -H. Filipowicz, University of Wisconsin--Madison
Reviews
Review Quotes
'œA valuable resource and guide for scholars, students, and theater professionals, this book will be appreciated by general readers with an interest in contemporary theater. It is an appropriate choice for large or small theater collections.'' Book on the Theatre
'œ...Czerwinski's study is a welcome introduction to a little-known, but fascinating and significant culture.'' Broadside
This item was reviewed in:
Choice, June 1989
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Summaries
Long Description
Although European critics have recognized Poland's distinctive contributions to theatre since the beginning of the twentieth century, American audiences first became acquainted with Polish drama only in the 1960s through the work of Jerzy Grotowski and his avant-garde Laboratory Theatre. Grotowski's productions served to stimulate interest in several other Polish dramatists whose plays have since been produced by Off-Broadway and university theatre groups. Until the publication of Professor Czerwinski's study, however, little information on Polish theatre as a whole has been available to English-speaking readers and audiences. This volume is the first to survey the work of the most important and representative contemporary Polish dramatists and directors and to analyze their contributions to both Polish and Slavic theatrical traditions. A chronology of important premieres and other productions provides a guide to the unfolding of Polish drama since 1956. Descriptions of dramatic works give detailed summaries of plot, action, and characters as well as information on productions and how they fared under Polish censorship. The impact of censorship on dramatic writers is discussed, particularly the response of cloaking social commentary in elaborate metaphor. In this connection, the jester-priest metaphor, which was associated with the Polish Theater of the Absurd during the repressive 1960s, is of particular significance in the development of Polish drama. Professor Czerwinski looks at the influence of Dialog, the Polish monthly that served as the unofficial organ of artists and intellectuals during the 1950s and 1960s and introduced every important dramatist of the period. He considers the drama of the Solidarity and Post-Solidarity periods, thoughfully assessing the effects of the labor union movement on Polish theater.
Long Description
A valuable resource and guide for scholars, students, and theater professionals, this book will be appreciated by general readers with an interest in contemporary theater. It is an appropriate choice for large or small theater collections. Books on the Theater Although European critics have recognized Poland's distinctive contributions to theatre since the beginning of the twentieth century, American audiences first became acquainted with Polish drama only in the 1960s through the work of Jerzy Grotowski and his avant-garde Laboratory Theatre. Grotowski's productions served to stimulate interest in several other Polish dramatists whose plays have since been produced by Off-Broadway and university theatre groups. Until the publication of Professor Czerwinski's study, however, little information on Polish theatre as a whole has been available to English-speaking readers and audiences. This volume is the first to survey the work of the most important and representative contemporary Polish dramatists and directors and to analyze their contributions to both Polish and Slavic theatrical traditions. A chronology of important premieres and other productions provides a guide to the unfolding of Polish drama since 1956. Descriptions of dramatic works give detailed summaries of plot, action, and characters as well as information on productions and how they fared under Polish censorship. The impact of censorship on dramatic writers is discussed, particularly the response of cloaking social commentary in elaborate metaphor. In this connection, the jester-priest metaphor, which was associated with the Polish Theater of the Absurd during the repressive 1960s, is of particular significance in the development of Polish drama. Professor Czerwinski looks at the influence of Dialog, the Polish monthly that served as the unofficial organ of artists and intellectuals during the 1950s and 1960s and introduced every important dramatist of the period. He considers the drama of the Solidarity and Post-Solidarity periods, thoughfully assessing the effects of the labor union movement on Polish theater.
Unpaid Annotation
"A valuable resource and guide for scholars, students, and theater professionals, this book will be appreciated by general readers with an interest in contemporary theater. It is an appropriate choice for large or small theater collections." Books on the Theater
Table of Contents
Preface
Acknowledgments
Chronology Introduction: The Roots of Contemporary Polish Drama
The Jester-Priest Metaphor Tadeusz Rozewicz: The Reluctant Jester Slawomir Mrozek: The Seeker of Absoltes Jerzy Broszkiewicz and Tymoteusz Karpowics: Priests in Mufti Grochowiak, Iredynski and Others: In Search of the Emperor's Clothes Directors and Their Theaters: Home for the Homeless
Table of Contents provided by Publisher. All Rights Reserved.

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