The Apocalyptic Century

An issue of: Theater

The Apocalyptic Century
Journal Issue Pages: 188 Volume 29, Number 3 Published: 1999 An issue of Theater
Apocalypse, with its promise of millenarian transformation, has been one of the twentieth century’s powerful driving forces, in aesthetics as well as in politics. This special Millennium Issue of Theater offers a radical rethinking of theatrical modernism and the avant-garde in the light of apocalypse—the violent destruction of the old to “Make It New,” as Ezra Pound urged. This major collection of essays and play texts explores how modernist theater both reflected and contributed to the century’s unparalleled social and political upheavals.

Featuring previously unpublished texts and translations by Karl Kraus, Tennessee Williams, Heiner Müller, and David Cole, this collection shows that twentieth-century theater transformed many of the traditional elements of classical apocalyptic literature for modern ends. The volume’s contributors consider playwrights, theories, and movement spanning the past one hundred years, providing a startling new perspective on modern drama from Ibsen and Jarry to Adrienne Kennedy and Tony Kushner.

Contributors. Gabrielle Cody, Linda Dorff, Michael Evenden, Elinor Fuchs, Daniel Gerould, Sylvére Lotringer, Matthew Wilson Smith, Kirk Williams


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Table of Contents Back to Top

1. Up Front—Erika Munk

2. The Apocalyptic Century—Elinor Fuchs

3. The Last Night Epilogue to "The Last Days of Mankind" An Excerpt—Karl Kraus, Translated by Douglas Langworthy

4. The Apocalyptic Mode and the Terror of History: Turn-of-the-Century Russian and Polish Millenarian Drama—Daniel Gerould

5. Burning for Judgment Day—Sylvere Lotringer

6. End Worlds without Ends in Beckett and Duras— Gabrielle Cody

7. Exhibits: Settings of Apocalypse

8. "No Future without Marx":Dramaturgies of "The End of History" in Churchill, Brenton, and Barker—Michael Evenden

9. Babylon Now: Tennessee William's Apocalypses—Linda Dorff

10. The Lingering Hour A Fragment—Tennessee Williams

11. Begin with Apocalypse: The Re-Actionary Theater of Heiner Muller—Kirk Williams

Additional InformationBack to Top
ISBN Paperback: 978-0-8223-6477-1