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The Anthropology of Dario Fo: an Interdisciplinary Approach

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  09 July 2015

Abstract

Anthropological issues concerning socio-cultural evolution were important in the development of Marxism and led to the theories of cultural materialism. Besides Marx and Engels, anthropology was an important subject for other seminal Marxist theorists, such as Plekhanov. For the Marxist playwright-performer Dario Fo, Gramsci’s theories of hegemony are fundamental to his ideas of the development of art from utilitarian activities, and explain his insistence on drawing from folk and popular forms of performance. In this article Antonio Scuderi investigates some of the major anthropological and folkloric themes in Fo’s theatre, including the influence of anthropologists such as Toschi and Lévi-Strauss. Antonio Scuderi is Professor of Italian at Truman State University in Missouri, where he founded the Italian programme. His interdisciplinary articles on Italian performance traditions have been published in leading journals of theatre, folklore, and literary studies, including Theatre Journal, Oral Tradition, and Modern Language Review. He is the author of Dario Fo and Popular Performance (Legas, 1998), Dario Fo: Framing, Festival, and the Folkloric Imagination (Lexington Books, 2011), and co-editor of Dario Fo: Stage, Text, and Tradition (Southern Illinois, 2000).

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Research Article
Copyright
Copyright © Cambridge University Press 2015 

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