Download American Theater in the Culture of the Cold War: Producing by Bruce A. Mcconachie PDF

By Bruce A. Mcconachie

On hand December 2003 during this groundbreaking learn, Bruce McConachie makes use of the first metaphor of containment—what occurs once we categorize a play, a tv exhibit, or something we view as having an within, an out of doors, and a boundary among the two—as the dominant metaphor of chilly struggle theatergoing. Drawing at the cognitive psychology and linguistics of George Lakoff and Mark Johnson, he presents strange entry to the ways that spectators within the chilly warfare years projected themselves into level figures that gave them excitement. McConachie reconstructs those cognitive tactics by way of counting on scripts, set designs, experiences, memoirs, and different facts. After constructing his theoretical framework, he specializes in 3 archtypal figures of containment major in chilly battle tradition, Empty Boys, relations Circles, and Fragmented Heroes. McConachie makes use of more than a few performs, musicals, and sleek dances from the dominant tradition of the chilly warfare to debate those figures, together with The Seven yr Itch, Cat on a sizzling Tin Roof; The King and I,A Raisin within the solar, evening trip, and The Crucible. In an epilogue, he discusses the legacy of chilly battle theater from 1962 to 1992. unique and provocative, American Theater within the tradition of the chilly battle illuminates the brain of the spectator within the context of chilly battle tradition; it makes use of cognitive experiences and media thought to maneuver clear of semiotics and psychoanalysis, forging a brand new method of analyzing theater historical past.

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Additional info for American Theater in the Culture of the Cold War: Producing and Contesting Containment, 1947-1962 (Studies Theatre Hist & Culture)

Sample text

Radio programming recycled the conventions of newspaper reporting, realist theatrical representation, musical concert programming, and filmic montage. Nonetheless, radiophony altered even as it replicated past cultural practices. The news, music, and drama might have had the ring of familiarity on the new medium, but radio put these old formats in a new space, both more abstract and more intimate than any before it. As communications historian Richard Butsch notes, “[By 1940] no longer did the announcer enter the listener’s home.

As Lakoff and Johnson understand, the world pushes back against human perceptions; consequently, the minds of audience members, shaped by evolution, the experience of living on earth, and historical culture, will tend to take welltraveled routes of cognition to gain comprehension. Faced with certain kinds of stimuli, the cognitive unconscious tends to click onto “containment” rather than another primary metaphor to make sense of what is perceived. Since this happens at the unconscious level, there can be no hard evidence of its occurrence.

Although Lakoff and Johnson do not comment directly on this analytical separation, their discussion of the errors of “disembodied scientific realism” is relevant to it. 28 Restated in theatrical terms, the “response” of the audience was never separated or divorced from the “reality” on stage. Consequently, humans can gain no objective understanding about the formal properties of theatrical objects on the stage or about a separable, discrete response to them from members of the audience. The relationship connecting spectators to the stage and events on the stage to the spectators must be understood as a single phenomenon.

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