The Semiotics of Theater

The Semiotics of Theater

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"The most thorough, systematic and convincing semiotics of the theater we have.... [L]ike those of Eco, it is an important conceptual synthesis, and a bibliographical gold mine." -Modern Language Notes"... impresses with its thoroughness and the informed perspective of its author... " -Theatre Survey

"... a classic text... " -Theatre Research International"Immediately accessible to readers with some knowledge of theater but not much of semiotics.... For anyone with an interest in theater production and performance, or indeed theater history." -Marvin Carlson
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Product details

  • Hardback | 352 pages
  • 155 x 235 x 20.57mm | 767g
  • Bloomington, IN, United States
  • English
  • Abridged
  • 3 illus.
  • 0253322375
  • 9780253322371
  • 730,129

Table of contents

Theater as a Cultural System
The Theatrical Code

I. The Theatrical Code as a System

1. The Actor's Activities as a Sign
Language-based Signs
Linguistic Signs
Paralinguistic Signs
Kinesic Signs
Mimic Signs
Gestural Signs
Proxemic Signs
2. The Actor's Appearance as a Sign
3. Spatial Signs
Theatrical Space
Stage Space
4. Nonverbal Acoustic Signs
5. Theater as a Semiotic System
The Specificity of the Theatrical Sign
Structure and Hierarchy
Theatrical Communication

II. The Theatrical Gesture as a Norm

6. The Gesture in Eighteenth-Century German Theater
From System to Norm
Problems of a Semiotic Historical Reconstruction
The Gestural Code in Eighteenth-Century German Theater
Preconditions: The Gestural Code of Baroque Theater
Changes in the Baroque Gestural Code during the Early Enlightenment
The Genesis of a Gestural Code for Bourgeois Illusionist Theater
Gestures in Theater as a Representational System of Meaning in the Discourse of the Epoch

III. The Theatrical Code as Speech

7. Performance as Theatrical Text
The Concept of the Theatrical Text
On the Constitution of the Theatrical Text
The Transformation of the Drama's Literary Text into the Theatrical Text of the Performance
The Hermeneutics of the Theatrical Text
8. The Process of Constituting Meaning and Sense as a Method of Analyzing Theatrical Texts
Theory and Method
Individual Analytic Procedures
Recourse to the Theatrical Code as a System and a Norm
Selection and Combination
Internal and External Recoding
On Applying the Method
Problems of Notation
Concluding Remarks on the Kinesic Code of the German Theater of the 1970s

Index of Names
Index of Terms
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About Erika Fischer-Lichte

ERIKA FISCHER-LICHTE is Director of the Institute of Theater Research at the Johannes Gutenberg-Universitat, Mainz.
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