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Download 1956 and All That: The Making of Modern British Drama by Dan Rebellato PDF

By Dan Rebellato

It really is acknowledged that British Drama used to be shockingly lifted out of the doldrums via the 'revolutionary' visual appeal of John Osborne's glance again in Anger on the Royal courtroom in may well 1956. yet had the theatre been as ephemeral and effeminate because the indignant younger males claimed? used to be the period of Terence Rattigan and 'Binkie' Beaumont as repressed and closeted because it turns out? during this daring and interesting problem to the obtained knowledge of the final 40 years of theatrical heritage, Dan Rebellato uncovers a unique tale altogether. it really is one the place Britain's declining Empire and extending panic over the 'problem' of homosexuality performed a vital function within the building of an everlasting fantasy of the theatre. by means of going again to basic assets and carefully wondering all assumptions, Rebellato has rewritten the heritage of the Making of recent British Drama.

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Additional resources for 1956 and All That: The Making of Modern British Drama

Sample text

And the terrifying thing is—I don’t care either’ (72). And Ronnie, ventriloquising through Beatie, claims that full physical expression is the hope for the future: ‘Socialism isn’t talking all the time, it’s living, it’s singing, it’s dancing’ (129). This metaphor weaves through one of Look Back in Anger’s main narrative threads. Jimmy, trying to goad a response out of Alison, tells her, If only something—something would happen to you, and wake you out of your beauty sleep! ) If you could have a child, and it would die.

To insist on the presence of some inner act of ‘intending’ every time a word is spoken is to rely on a Cartesian division between mind and body, which 34 THE POLITICS OF VITAL THEATRE matches our actual behaviour so badly as to be untenable. Derrida calls this function of language ‘iterability’ and thus far he is entirely in accord with Austin. The force of Derrida’s deconstructive reading begins to emerge when he observes that this has some curious knock-on effects for another part of Austin’s argument.

The impetus behind the subsequent change in CEMA’s direction came straight from Keynes. I have already described his antipathy to the endowments to amateurs. As Kenneth Clark recalled, ‘He was not the man for wandering minstrels and amateur theatricals. He believed in excellence’ (quoted, Baldry 1981, 15). Excellence, like standards, is a weasel word, which can mean many things, depending who uses it. Charles Landstone, the Assistant Drama Director for CEMA from November 1942, argues that Keynes ‘loved glamour, he loved success’ (1953, 67), and that his priorities for the theatre were not therefore with amateur work, nor indeed with tours to industrial towns.

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