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Shakespeare, Technicity, Theatre


  • Date Published: August 2022
  • availability: Available
  • format: Paperback
  • isbn: 9781108703048

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About the Authors
  • This urgent and provocative study explores contemporary Shakespeare performance to bring a sense of theatre as technology into view. Rather than merely using technologies, the theatre's distinctively intermedial character is essential to its complex technicity; the changing function of gesture and costume, of written documents in the making of performance, of light and sound, and of the interplay of live and recorded acting complicate the sense of theatre as a medium. In a series of probing discussions, Worthen interrogates the interaction of live and mediated acting onstage, the impact of written media from the handwritten scroll to the small-screen app in acting as a technē, the work of Original Practices as an interactive modern theatre technology, the economies of theatrical immersion, and the consequences of an emerging algorithmic theatre, providing a richly theoretical reading of the stakes of theatre as an always-emerging technology.

    • Enables a rethinking of the uses of digital media in theatre as part of a longer-term history of theatre as a technology in itself
    • Features wide-ranging reference to contemporary and historical performance, and provides cutting-edge scholarship of recent theatre and Shakespeare performance
    • Provides close discussion and exemplary illustration of a range of innovative theatrical productions, from postcard plays, to Original Practices, immersive theatre, and algorithmic performance
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    Reviews & endorsements

    '... Worthen's book encompass a dazzling variety of texts, performances, and productions and draws from various theories of theater as well as of technology.' Sarah Kriger, Technology and Culture

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    Product details

    • Date Published: August 2022
    • format: Paperback
    • isbn: 9781108703048
    • length: 279 pages
    • dimensions: 229 x 152 x 15 mm
    • weight: 0.38kg
    • contains: 15 b/w illus.
    • availability: Available
  • Table of Contents

    1. Introduction: theatre, medium, technology
    2. The face, the mask, the screen: acting and the technologies of the other
    3. Shax the app
    4. Interactive remediation: Original Practices
    5. Designing the spectator
    6. And or and not: recoding theatre.

  • Author

    W. B. Worthen, Barnard College, Columbia University
    W. B. Worthen is Alice Brady Pels Professor in the Arts, and Chair of the Theatre Department at Barnard College. He is also co-chair of the Ph.D. Program in Theatre at Columbia University, New York, where he is appointed as Professor of English and Comparative Literature. He is the author of many books, including The Idea of the Actor (1984), Modern Drama and the Rhetoric of Theater (1992), Shakespeare and the Authority of Performance (Cambridge, 1997), Shakespeare and the Force of Modern Performance (Cambridge, 2003), Print and the Poetics of Modern Drama (Cambridge, 2006), Drama: Between Poetry and Performance (2010), Shakespeare Performance Studies (Cambridge, 2014). He is the General Editor of the Elements in Shakespeare Performance book series.

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