W. B. Yeats is recognised globally as one of the most significant poets of the past century. And yet, in his Nobel address, he singled out his work in the theatre as his main accomplishment. Yeats on Theatre restores Yeats not only a playwright, but as a writer and thinker who, over forty years, produced a body of theory covering all aspects of theatre, including the possibilities of performance space, the role of the audience and the nature of tragedy. When read as whole, in conjunction with his plays, letters, and extensive manuscript materials, Yeats's theatre writings emerge as a radical, cohesive, theatrical aesthetic, at odds with – and in advance of – the theatre of his time. Ultimately, the Yeats who takes shape in Yeats on Theatre is an artist who thinks through theatre, providing us with an urgently needed reassertion of the value of theatre as embodied thought.
Anthony Roche Source: Dublin Review of Books
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