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From history to “Ourstories” in Martin Crimp’s metanarratives

Angelaki, V. (2015) From history to “Ourstories” in Martin Crimp’s metanarratives. Journal of Contemporary Drama in English, 3 (1). pp. 142-155. ISSN 2195-0156

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To link to this item DOI: 10.1515/jcde-2015-0010


Even though Martin Crimp is now internationally recognized as one of the major trailblazers of recent and contemporary British theater, having consistently produced formally and textually groundbreaking work since the early 1980s, it is essential to acknowledge that his reputation has also been built on the innovative ways in which he has approached classical texts. Crimp’s representational methods are marked by a characteristic ease of combining the old with the new and the past with the present into a new state of co-existence; a continuum of experience lived, being lived and about to be lived. We have seen evidence of this in Crimp’s numerous translations for the stage, from Eugène Ionesco to Bernard-Marie Koltès which, as I have argued in The Plays of Martin Crimp: Making Theatre Strange (2012), have consistently fostered attention to cultural sensibilities, as well as social, political and historical specificities. This kind of sensitive intervention has been crucial in avoiding melting-pot translations that indiscriminately intermesh languages and traditions for the sake of simplified universal applicability. Negotiating past and present alongside different cultures on the understanding that history is the interconnecting, living and vibrating vein of humanity is not an easy task for any artist; this article examines how Crimp has handled this challenge in recent work.

Item Type:Article
Divisions:No Reading authors. Back catalogue items
Arts, Humanities and Social Science > School of Arts and Communication Design > Film, Theatre & Television
ID Code:66886
Publisher:De Gruyter

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