Theater of War and Exile
Twelve Playwrights, Directors and Performers from Eastern Europe and Israel
by Domnica Radulescu with a foreword by Maya E. Roth
Not Yet Published, Available Spring/Summer 2015
About the Book
In what ways does political trauma influence the art arising from it? Is there an aesthetic of war and exile in theatrical works that emerge from such experiences? Are there cultural markers defining such works from areas like Eastern Europe and Israel? This book considers these questions in an examination of plays, performances and theater artists that speak from a place of political violence and displacement.
The author’s critical inquiry covers a variety of theatrical experimentations, including Brechtian distancing, black humor, pastiche, surreal and hyper-real imagery, reversed chronologies and disrupted narratives. Drawing on postmodern theories and performance studies as well interviews and personal statements from the artists discussed, this study explores the transformative power of the theater arts and their function as catalysts for social change, healing and remembrance.
“Radulescu’s examination of the theater of the Balkans, Romania, Israel, and other sites of violence and exile demonstrates the power of theater to enable the survivors of trauma to document and witness, to reclaim the real, to produce social change, and to promote the possibility of healing, both on the personal and national levels…a model for understanding how artists depict and resist unspeakable violence and living a national identity far from that nation…will surely be of interest to scholars from a wide variety of fields.”–Kevin J. Wetmore, Department of Theatre Arts, Loyola Marymount University
“With an exile’s insight and an advocate’s clarity, with a scholar’s thoroughness and an artist’s passionate partiality, Radulescu assembles and frames an illuminating array of recent-and-contemporary theatrical manifestations that explore war-born, genocide-inscribed trauma.”–Erik Ehn, Professor and Chair of Theater Arts and Performance Studies at Brown University.