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Theatre and the Good: The Value of Collaborative Play [Hardcover]

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Item Number 244851  
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Item description for Theatre and the Good: The Value of Collaborative Play by Mark Fearnow...

Surprisingly little has been published on the questions of what theatre actually is and what participants in theatre derive from the experience. This book investigates theatre as a means of social connection. It begins by establishing a context drawn from contemporary research in public health, sociology, and political science on the decline of personal interactions, civic organizations, and the network of organizations that create "social capital." It then offers theatre participation as a means of overcoming the growing alienation of a technological society. Theatre and the Good examines the roots of theatre from an anthropological perspective, as well as theatre's capacity for liberation, using models of theatre in prison, dramatherapy, and a spiritual opening felt by many who have participated in performance and which has previously been only fractionally described. The book argues that the ancient needs for which theatre arose are still relevant and that theatre is a much needed and effective pathway to meaning. This book enters into the discussion of "performance" and, using terms accessible to any educated person, links that discussion to matters of social science, literature, philosophy and religious studies. An interdisciplinary study, Theatre and the Good will be of interest to theatre practitioners as well as academics in theatre, performance studies, sociology, philosophy, religious studies, and literature.

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Item Specifications...

Pages   140
Est. Packaging Dimensions:   Length: 9.1" Width: 6.1" Height: 0.6"
Weight:   0.75 lbs.
Binding  Hardcover
Release Date   Feb 28, 2007
Publisher   Cambria Press
ISBN  1934043435  
ISBN13  9781934043431  

Availability  145 units.
Availability accurate as of May 24, 2017 11:34.
Usually ships within one to two business days from La Vergne, TN.
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More About Mark Fearnow

Register your artisan biography and upload your photo! MARK FEARNOW is Professor of Theatre at the Hanover College where he teaches theatre history and playwriting.

Mark Fearnow was born in 1958 and has an academic affiliation as follows - Pennsylvania State University.

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Product Categories

1Books > Subjects > Arts & Photography > Performing Arts > Theater > General
2Books > Subjects > Arts & Photography > Performing Arts > Theater > History & Criticism
3Books > Subjects > Literature & Fiction > Drama > History
4Books > Subjects > Nonfiction > Social Sciences > Anthropology > Cultural
5Books > Subjects > Nonfiction > Social Sciences > Sociology > Urban

Reviews - What do customers think about Theatre and the Good: The Value of Collaborative Play?

An answer to the age old question: Why does theatre matter?  Jan 16, 2008
This is a wonderful book for theater practitioners, educators, and anyone who loves theater. It reminds us why what we do is so important.

Fearnow combines research with anecdotes of his own moving experiences, and both serve the overriding purpose: reminding us all what really is so GOOD about theater.
A Philosophically Inspired Work   Dec 17, 2007
This book is clearly the fruit of a lifetime of contemplation. If we pay attention to what the author is actually saying, more than just his idea about the theatre is presented here. We, potentially, encounter the author as person. For the attentive reader, this book performs a similar role to the theatre itself in that it serves as an antidote to living a somewhat technologically deformed life-style. It invites us, after appropriate contemplation as Fearnow points out, to strive to contribute more of our selves, or at least differing aspects of our selves, to the community at large. Fearnow, in sharing his experience of the theatre, appeals to Martin Heidegger's philosophy. Anyone familiar with phenomenological philosophy, however, will recognize much that may be attributed to Edmund Husserl's insights which have been subsequently mediated through Heidegger.

A critique of contemporary North American technological and marketing techniques sets the stage for seeing the theatre as an alternative "tribe" in our media-dominated age. The theatrical tribe enjoys a humanitarian advantage over the one-sided, commercially-sponsored tribes prevalent in modern society. Business, Fearnow reminds us, is not a necessary part of human society. It may not even be a natural part of society. Omitting business he lists sports, work, faith, politics and civic engagement within "authentic tribalism." Here, I am reminded of Husserl's vision, and program, to revise philosophical thinking through a community of like-minded thinkers. I am led further to wonder if Fearnow would consent to add a community composed of philosophers to his list of authentic tribes.

In reading the book, I saw Chapters 1 through 4, as setting the philosophical stage for the application of the author's experience with theatre as being more than mere entertainment. Chapters 5 through 7 are lighter reading, the rigors of philosophical thinking having been undergone earlier, and are presented with descriptive case studies and examples of theatre's therapeutic, but not necessarily clinical, collaborative play in our lives. I am among those people who, if I were to go to the theatre I would want to be entertained, as Fearnow has observed in the book. However, there is more than mere reading or intellectual entertainment in the book. The book is, in fact, a joy to read. This is probably due to his honesty and integrity in laboring to share ideas that matter to him and, hopefully, to others.

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