Beckett's Laboratory

Beckett's Laboratory : Experiments in the Theatre Enclosure

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Offering fresh studies of Samuel Beckett in pre-production, in rehearsal, as an innovator of the script form, and as a speculative director and designer, Beckett's Laboratory reconsiders Beckett's stringent approach to stage direction through the lens of the laboratory and reveals his experimentalism with stage representation and composition. Wakeling argues that acknowledging Beckett's experimental processes, from their composition to their reception, is crucial to understanding the innovative representations of humanity that emerged at different stages in Beckett's practice.

Repositioning Beckett's performance oeuvre in relation to philosophy, Wakeling draws upon post-dramatic, symbolist, materialist and post-structural understandings of theatre performance to reappraise Beckett's plays as a composition for performance. The philosophical underpinnings of Beckett's practices are explored through an eclectic mix of familiar and unexplored contemporary theatre productions and films of Beckett's works, including Not I, Nacht und Traume, Happy Days, Footfalls and Catastrophe.

Beckett's Laboratory is a provocative examination of Beckett's experimentalism with the human spectacle and his playful reliance upon the interpretative powers of the actors and audience.
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Product details

  • Paperback | 224 pages
  • 138 x 216 x 25.4mm | 453.59g
  • Methuen Drama
  • London, United Kingdom
  • English
  • 1350238775
  • 9781350238770

Table of contents

List of abbreviations

Chapter 1: Laboratory Acts Without Words
Chapter 2: Sensory Deprivation
Chapter 3: Impediment and the Symbolist Dramaturgical Inheritance
Chapter 4: Dream Space, the Other Laboratory
Chapter 5: Catastrophe and the Politics of Spectacle
Chapter 6: Hypnosis: A Theory of Beckett Spectatorship
Chapter 7: Adaphatroce, or the Contentious Fringes of Beckett's Dramaturgy
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Review quote

A refreshing and enlightening approach to Samuel Beckett's work as a laboratory where media of expression, liveness, the status of the audience in the creative act and the writing process itself are tested and cultivated. -- Mark Taylor-Batty, University of Leeds, UK
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About Corey Wakeling

Corey Wakeling is an Associate Professor at Kobe College, Japan.
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