In the history of theatre, there is long tradition of performances addressing issues of current events and central to society itself, encouraging consciousness and social change. The political satire performed by the comic poets at the theatres had considerable influence on public opinion in the Athenian democracy. Those earlier Western dramas, arising out of the polis, or democratic city-state of Greek society, were performed in amphitheaters, central arenas used for theatrical performances, religious ceremonies and political gatherings; these dramas had a ritualistic and social significance that enhanced the relevance of the political issues being examined. One must marvel at the open-minded examination of controversial and critical topics that took place right in the political heart of Athenian society, allowing a courageous self-examination of the first democracy trying to develop and refine itself further. Political Theatre challenges an audience member’s own beliefs, encourages them to critically assess their own moral values.
Stanford University Excellent resource by university lecturer on various aspects of Erwin Piscator’s works, including an historical overview of Germany at the time, Piscator’s theories in practice and a detailed examination of his major works.
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