By Albert Bermel
The definitive advisor to the existence and paintings of Antonin Artaud
Antonin Artaud's theatre of cruelty is likely one of the most important forces in international theatre, but the idea that is without doubt one of the most often misunderstood. during this incisive examine, Albert Bermel appears to be like heavily at Artaud's paintings as a playwright, director, actor, dressmaker, manufacturer and critic, and offers a clean perception into his principles, recommendations and, peculiarly, his writings.
Tracing the theatre of cruelty's origins in prior dramatic conventions, tribal rituals of detoxification, transfiguration and exaltation, and in similar arts corresponding to movie and dance, Bermel examines each one of Artaud's six performs for shape and that means, in addition to surveying the appliance of Artaud's theories and strategies to the overseas theatre of modern years.
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Additional info for Artaud's Theatre Of Cruelty
He was the first child in his family, sickly, and liable to have been spoilt. His mother seems to have doted on him to the point of possessiveness. 3 He had one sister. He probably felt what pop psychoanalysis calls inadequate vis-a-vis women, if only because of his fragile health. He had a Catholic upbringing. During his later years in asylums he underwent occasional delusions of being either Christ reborn or the Antichrist, the incarnation of purity of soul or the sink of all iniquity. But we do not assume that because Sophocles retold the myth of Oedipus he was a latent parricide or had designs on his mother or abnormally feared castration.
As a coincidence Artaud might have savoured, he finds himself alongside Aristotle on most drama bookshelves. Nine tragedies by Seneca on Greek mythical themes and the disputed authorship of a tenth play, Octavia, have secured a place in textbook histories for the most prolific Roman writer after Cicero. Seneca's are the only specimens of Latin tragedy that have survived. But their standing among scholars is not high. They are said to be severe comedowns from the lofty works of Aeschylus, Sophocles and Euripides, full of 'fustian and bombast', goriness and unnecessary cruelty.
In all three instances, and in others, the mad episode seems to have been part of a myth before the playwright took it over and dramatized it. One is hard put to it to determine how much of the episodes we owe to myth and history and how much proceeds from the playwright's imagination. But certainly cathartic rites of initiation into the Orphic Mysteries, the Eleusinian Mysteries, the Pythagorean brotherhood, and other secret societies and fraternities are frequently alluded to in the fifth century and later, and they are relics of the older forms of initiation.
Artaud's Theatre Of Cruelty by Albert Bermel