Antonin Artaud (1896-1948) conceived and inaugurated the Theater of Cruelty, a dramatic movement that has had a profound influence on the avant-garde theater in Europe and the United States. The movement is exemplified by the Peter Brook production of Marat/Sade. This book, the first to analyze Artaud's theories, their sources, and the extent to which he succeeded in implementing them in his own plays, is now available in a 2017 edition, readily accessible to scholars and interested fans of literary criticism and the modern theater worldwide.
The new edition adds a thoughtful Foreword by Professor Peter Thompson of Roger Williams University. Originally published by The University of Chicago Press, the book is brought to a new generation by Quid Pro Books, in modern paperback, hardcover, and digital editions.
"It is a vital, thoroughly documented theater arts document containing a truly comprehensive bibliography. The writer's manner is direct, his conclusions informative, and the scope of his analysis far exceeds any other work yet published on Artaud."
- Choice (in reviewing the first edition)
This sophisticated study remains essential reading for all scholars interested in modern French literature and the evolution of twentieth-century drama, for the many devotees of avant-garde theater, and for those who have felt puzzled by the superficiality of much contemporary drama.