Epic Theater Essay

Epic Theater Essay

Length: 1020 words (2.9 double-spaced pages)

Rating: Strong Essays

Open Document

Essay Preview

Social change is defined as an ‘alteration in the basic structures of a social group or society’. Social change occurs when a group of people change their minds and beliefs on what is socially acceptable, this is usually due to an event or change in public opinion. Brecht’s epic theatre can be used as a vehicle for social change as it is used to convey a message to the audience.

Bertolt Brecht was born on the 10th of February 1898 in Augsburg, Germany. As a child he was unpopular, with outspoken views, which were thought to be beyond his years of knowledge. In order to avoid the war he enrolled himself in Ludwig Maximilian University of Munich; however, in 1918 he was inevitably recruited and forced to work as a medical orderly. In 1933 Brecht was exiled after disagreeing with Adolf Hitler’s views, he resided in America and was banned from German theatres after his books were burnt and his citizenship was revoked. During his time in exile, Brecht wrote three of his most well known plays; The Caucasian Chalk Circle (1944-1945), Mother Courage and her Children (1938-1939) and The Good Woman of Szechwan (1938-1940). Brecht’s plays were all written in the style of epic theatre. A phrase coined by Erwin Piscator in the 1920s.

Epic theatre is a style of theatre in which the audience is positioned to think as opposed to realism where the audience is positioned to feel. The purpose of making the audience think is so that they are able to have a clear, unbiased opinion on the situation being depicted in the play. Epic Theatre essentially retells a story already familiar to the audience, in the form of a fable such as the Caucasian Chalk Circle or in the form or, by retelling historical events.

Verfremdungseffecte (Alienation E...

... middle of paper ...

...in the story. The characters speaking in third person undermine the love story between Grusha and Simon, as Brecht believed the motivations behind the characters themselves were unimportant and only the story they were involved in was vital.

Brecht’s theatre could be used as an effective vehicle for social change. His style of epic theatre highlights social issues and portrays them in a way so that viewers have no emotional ties and only clear, unbiased opinions, making it easy to make decisions on the social justices and injustices of the stories. Epic theatre can be used to alter opinions as it educates people and severs ties of empathy so that people can clearly use their minds to make judgements. This would be helpful for changing societal beliefs as people are inclined to depend on emotions to make evaluations which is sometimes ineffective.

Need Writing Help?

Get feedback on grammar, clarity, concision and logic instantly.

Check your paper »

Epic Theatre: The Influences of Bertolt Brecht Essay

- Response Essay “Theatre makes us think about power and the way our society works and it does this with a clear purpose, to make a change.” The ideas of Bertolt Brecht (1898-1965) changed the theatre in many ways. Brecht along with Erwin Piscator developed the style of Epic theatre style contrasting to previous accepted styles. Presentational in form, Epic theatre is a vehicle for social comment through techniques such as: alienation, historification, eclectic influences (highly Asian), constructivism in scenery, disjointed and illogical scene placement, ordinary clothing and lighting, the use of music to detach the audience from emotion, placards and signs and projected images....   [tags: Theater, Drama]

Strong Essays
1461 words (4.2 pages)

Theater Vs. Dvd Essay

- Theater Vs. DVD Have you ever wished you had a remote to pause a movie when you needed to go to the restroom at the movie theaters. You wouldn 't have that problem if you bought a DVD and enjoyed it in your own home. From the price differences, to the comfort and control, the food...etc. Let 's discuss the differences between going to the theater and buying a DVD. If you are going to the movie theater you are already expecting to pay from seven dollars and up, and for 3D experience it could be fifteen to twenty dollars depend on what theater you are at....   [tags: Movie theater, Film, Popcorn, Surround sound]

Strong Essays
837 words (2.4 pages)

The Rebirth of Shakespeare’s Globe Theater Essay

- Imagine standing in an octagonal shaped structure, enclosing a roofless inner pit. You are standing on a shell-carpeted floor and in front of you is a projected stage; a theater. Behind you are wooden seats and oak balusters. Have any idea of where you are. You are standing in the pit of Shakespeare’s famous Globe Theater. An English actor, Richard Burbage, constructed the Globe Theater in 1599. Unfortunately, it was burned down fourteen years later. In 1613 a cannon, discharged during a performance of Henry VIII, set fire to the thatched roof and destroyed the building (Microsoft Encarta Encyclopedia 2000)....   [tags: Shakespeare’s Globe Theater]

Free Essays
743 words (2.1 pages)

Essay about Brechtian Theater and Caryl Churchill

- Women in Brechtian theater play important roles such as that of wives, mothers, and workers. For example, Pelagea Vlassova, in "The Mother" undergoes the transformation from a widow, home bound and uneducated, to a revolutionary, fighting against class oppression. However, Brecht uses Vlassova's experienced are entirely dictated on the basis of her class; her sex appears to have no bearing on any aspect of the play. In contrast, the women in Caryl Churchill's "A Mouthful of Birds" are portrayed primarily as female, with the suggestion of class oppression as an underlying theme....   [tags: Performance Arts]

Strong Essays
2167 words (6.2 pages)

The Tragedy Of Greek Theater Essay

- The tragedy started at the City Dionysia, in the sixth century B.C.E. In the Greek theater, Dionysus is thought to be the son of Zeus. His mother was the powerful goddess, Semele, a mortal. However, Zeus wife, who was also his sister, Hera, was very jealous. She played a trick that ended up killing Semele. We have studied how this was accomplished in prior chapters, so These details of how Hera accomplished the killing of Semele, I won’t cover it in this week’s homework. What Hera did want was to kill Dionysus....   [tags: Tragedy, Sophocles, Aeschylus, Euripides]

Strong Essays
1678 words (4.8 pages)

Benson Theater Closing Night Essay

- Just recently, Benson Theater put on its last show, bringing an end to its storied history. I have had the personal honor of performing in Benson Theater four times and its atmosphere and character have had a profound effect on me as a student and actor. Benson is often home to the hardest-working people on campus: techies putting their blood, sweat, and tears into their work, actors reciting lines late into the night, and directors volunteering their time to ensure the perfection of the show. That is why on Saturday night it was bittersweet to see the last show in Benson....   [tags: Theatre]

Strong Essays
1116 words (3.2 pages)

Ancient Greek Theater Essay

- Have you ever just wanted to kill your parents. Perhaps they are not letting you order a seventh slice of cheese pizza at Chuck E. Cheese’s, or not letting you hang out with that dreamy hunk Bryan on Saturday. For Oedipus, killing his parents was not something petty he threatened when he got too worked up, but rather his fate. This suspenseful and masterful plot, conceived by the legendary playwright Sophocles, was one of the many groundbreaking works to come out of fifth century BC Greece. Works of ancient Greek theater, particularly Oedipus the King, embodied the spirit of innovation that fifth century BC Athens was known for....   [tags: Sophocles, Golden Age, Oedipus]

Strong Essays
1223 words (3.5 pages)

Essay about The Pacific Theater Of World War II

- The Pacific Theater of World War II Japan and the United States fought one of history’s most drastically altering wars. It was filled with massive casualties, inexplicable horrors, and epic battles. The war caused innovations in weapons, strategy, and military combat. It worst of all created the first weapon that mankind could truly kill itself with. The war between Japan and the United States changed the course of the western world because of the causes, battles, and consequences that entailed it....   [tags: World War II]

Strong Essays
1576 words (4.5 pages)

James Baldwin is an Epic Poet Essay

- James Baldwin; Epic Poet When studying humanity through the arts and literature one can?t help but notice that every civilization has a famous narrative or an epic. The epic marks the beginning of classical civilization in that it was the first form of literature to be written down from oral tradition. The epic tells of the glory of a society, of its. founding from the ruin of another or tells us of the experiences of a beloved hero. The common trait of any epic poem or narrative lies in the tragic hero, or the main character of the story....   [tags: Notes of a Native Son]

Strong Essays
2020 words (5.8 pages)

Essay about Epic Theatres

- Epic Theatres "Epic Theatre turns the spectator into an observer, but arouses his capacity for action, forces him to take decisions...the spectator stands outside, studies." (Bertolt Brecht. Brecht on Theatre. New York:Hill & Yang, 1964. p37) The concept of “epic theatre” was brought to life by German playwright, Bertolt Brecht. This direction of theatre was inspired by Brecht's Marxist political beliefs. It was somewhat of a political platform for his ideologies. Epic theatre is the assimilation of education through entertainment and is the antithesis of Stanislavsky's Realism and also Expressionism....   [tags: essays research papers]

Free Essays
1061 words (3 pages)