Documentary Theatre in the United States: An Historical Survey and Analysis of Its Content, Form, and Stagecraft

By Gary Fisher Dawson | Go to book overview

Appendix A
Documentary Theatre Through
the Years

1835
Georg Büchner
Georg Büchner: Danton's Death, Leonce and Lena and Woyzeck*

“In my eyes the dramatic poet is no more than a writer of history, but he stands above the latter in that he re-creates history and instead of giving a bald narration transplants us directly into the life of another age. He gives us characters, not characteristics; human figures, not descriptions. His highest task is to get as close as he can to history as it actually happened” (xiv).

1920
Erwin Piscator
The Political Theatre

“Such bourgeois plays could well be preceded by an introductory lecture which would prevent misunderstanding or an undesirable effect. In certain circumstances the plays could also be altered … either by cutting the text, or by building up certain scenes, or, where necessary, even by adding a prologue or an epilogue to make the whole thing clear. In this way a large part of world literature can be pressed into service … just as the whole of world history can be used to propagate the idea of the class struggle” (45).

1936
Morris Watson
“The Living Newspaper”

“Whatever the idea behind the Living Newspaper in the beginning, circumstance and influences of one kind or another have modified it. A literally rough esti

-171-

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