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Documentary Trial Plays in Contemporary American Theater

Documentary Trial Plays in Contemporary American Theater (Paperback)

£41.50
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Synopsis

The development of the documentary trial play in late-twentieth-century American theatre.From the Chicago Conspiracy Trial and the O. J. Simpson trial to the Clarence Thomas/Anita Hill congressional hearings, legal and legislative proceedings in the latter part of the twentieth-century kept Americans spellbound. Situated on the shifting border between imagination and the law, trial plays edit, arrange, and reproduce court records, media coverage, and first-person interviews, transforming these elements into a performance. In this first book-length critical study of contemporary American documentary theatre, Jacqueline O'Connor examines in depth ten such plays, all written and staged since 1970, and considers the role of the genre in re-creating and revising narratives of significant conflicts in contemporary history.Documentary theater, she shows, is a particularly appropriate and widely utilised theatrical form for engaging in debate about tensions between civil rights and institutional power, the inconsistency of justice, and challenges to gender norms. For each of the plays discussed, including The Trial of the Catonsville Nine, Unquestioned Integrity: The Hill/Thomas Hearings and The Laramie Project, O'Connor provides historical context and a brief production history before considering the trial the play focuses on. Grouping plays historically and thematically, she demonstrates how dramatic representation advances our understanding of the law's power while revealing the complexities that hinder society's pursuit of justice.

Essays & WritingLiterary CriticismLiterary studies: plays & playwrightsFilm, TV & DramaTheatre Publisher: Southern Illinois University Press Publication Date: 15/12/2012 ISBN-13: 9780809332366  Details: Type: Paperback Format: Books
Availability: To Order. Estimated despatch in 1-3 weeks.  

Jacqueline O'Connor is a professor of English at Boise State University and the author of Dramatizing Dementia: Madness in the Plays of Tennessee Williams

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