Facing reality: idealism versus conservatism in Australian theatre and politics at the turn of the twenty-first century

PhD Thesis


Payne, Benjamin John. 2005. Facing reality: idealism versus conservatism in Australian theatre and politics at the turn of the twenty-first century. PhD Thesis Doctor of Philosophy. University of Southern Queensland.
Title

Facing reality: idealism versus conservatism in Australian theatre and politics at the turn of the twenty-first century

TypePhD Thesis
Authors
AuthorPayne, Benjamin John
SupervisorFoy, Kaye
Institution of OriginUniversity of Southern Queensland
Qualification NameDoctor of Philosophy
Number of Pages388
Year2005
Abstract

This dissertation aims to provide an analysis of mainstream Australian playwriting at the turn of the 21st Century. It will argue that mainstream theatre in the 1990s and early 2000s in many ways reflects the concurrent national political developments, in particular the revision of many of the dominant ideals of previous eras, such as those of the sixties. In this dissertation, I will attempt to outline briefly some of the hallmarks of the theatre of the New Wave, and their relation to the broader social movements occurring in Australia at the time. I will trace the beginnings of disillusionment and revising of these ideals in the late seventies and early eighties. The majority of the argument will then discuss the ways in which early nineties theatre engages with and frequently rebuts these earlier ideals, just as nineties politics saw a revision of many of the ideals of the sixties in society as a whole. I will argue that in the latter nineties, mainstream playwrights begin to reverse this conservative shift, reinstating a number of the ideals of the earlier period. I will demonstrate that Australian mainstream theatre at the turn of the century is integrally related to the politics of the society of the time, and that mainstream theatre demonstrates both radical and conservative tendencies through the period under consideration.

Keywordstheatre, politics, playwriting, drama
ANZSRC Field of Research 2020360403. Drama, theatre and performance studies
360201. Creative writing (incl. scriptwriting)
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https://research.usq.edu.au/item/9xy06/facing-reality-idealism-versus-conservatism-in-australian-theatre-and-politics-at-the-turn-of-the-twenty-first-century

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