Auctor Ludens: Essays on Play in Literature by Gerald Guinness, Andrew Hurley

By Gerald Guinness, Andrew Hurley

It is a booklet approximately play perform instead of play thought. after all, perform presupposes idea, yet the following the editors decide to hold normal theoretical assumptions less than hide as opposed to strength them into explicitness. The participants to this quantity got unfastened rein to debate whatever point of literary play stuck their fancy. The absence of a predetermined theoretical framework has led to an idiosyntractic quantity at the diverse types of play.

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P. Vincent (New York, 1962), p. 10. Further page references are in the text. 6 John Barth, Chimera (New York, 1973), p. 147. BRECHT AND THE SCIENTIFIC SPIRIT OF PLAYFULNESS Martin Esslin For Brecht the theater was always an extremely serious matter. , educational and political, function. If, as he argued in the theoretical work which best sums up his position at the culmination of his career, the Little Organon for the Theater, the stage provides us with mimetic reproductions of social reality, it produces these three-dimensional representations of society, capable of influencing society, wholly in the spirit of playfulness: for the builders of society it exhibits the experience of society, present as well as past, in such a way that they can "enjoy" the feelings, insights and impulses that the most passionate, the wisest and the most active individuals had gained from the events of the day or of the century.

He must contribute questions, doubt, a multiplicity of possible points of view, comparisons, memories, experiences.... 11 Brecht was, in the last phase of his life, as artistic director of the Berliner Ensemble in East Berlin, in the fortunate position of being able to live up to this ideal. He had almost unlimited means at his disposal and could indulge in rehearsing a play over many months, sometimes up to a whole year. He allowed his actors to try out every possible approach by patiently watching them as they sampled the feel, the flavor, the effect of every tiny move and gesture, until finally a general consensus as to the best possible solution had been arrived at.

17, p. 1024. 266/7. 4 Ibid. 5 Ibid. p. 1023. The passage quoted was to form part of a book to be entitled Pedagogies. 6 Brecht, Anmerkung (zu den Lehrstuecken), Gesammelte Werke, vol. 17, p. 1035. , Gesammelte Werke, vol. 5, p. 432/3. 8 Roger Caillois, Jeux des Adultes in Jeux et Sports, Encyclopédie de la Pleiade, vol. XXIII, Paris, 1967. p. 174. 9 Brecht, (Notizen ueber) Die Dialektische Dramatik, Gesammelte Werke, vol. 15, p. 222. 10 Ibid. 11 Brecht, Haltung des Probenleiters (bei induktivem Vorgehen), Gesammelte Werke, vol.

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