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Blueprints for a Black Federal Theatre : Cambridge Studies in American Literature and Culture - Rena Fraden

Blueprints for a Black Federal Theatre

Cambridge Studies in American Literature and Culture

Hardcover Published: 29th April 1994
ISBN: 9780521443593
Number Of Pages: 268

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In the 1930s, the Work Progress Administration funded a massive Federal Theatre Project in America's major urban centers, presenting hundreds of productions, some of the most popular and memorable of which were produced in the highly controversial and avant garde 'Negro Units'. This experiment in government-supported culture brought to the forefront one of the central problems in American democratic culture - the representation of racial difference. Those in the profession quickly discovered inescapable ideological responsibilities attending any sort of show, whether apparently entertaining or political in nature. Exploring the liberal idealism of the thirties and the critical debates in black journals over the role of an African American theatre, Fraden also looks at the obstacles facing black playwrights, audiences, and actors in a changing milieu.

Industry Reviews

"Fraden's active yet balanced voice makes the work approachable for the casual reader yet her meticulous exploration of cultural and political frictions inside and beyond the project represents a significant contribution to the study of Negro FT making it required reading for any serious scholar of not only the Federal Theatre Project but of the American theatre scene of the 1930's." Theatre Studies, Vol. 41 "This major work is complex and scholarly. A critical and historical analysis of the purpose, plays, audiences and actors of the Federal Theatre of 1935-39, Blueprints for a Black Federal Theatre is compelling...useful to theatre students (and others) because of the rich and copious notes." Glenda E. Gill, Theatre Survey "Rena Fraden's 'Blueprint for a Black Federal Theatre' will also be a useful textbook for teaching African American theatre history. Fraden has distinguished her work from that of her major forerunners...'Blueprint' substantially enhance[s] our understanding of African American theatre and will enliven classroom discussions with the cogent and timely arguments [it] present[s]." Joni jones, Drama Review

List of illustrations
A new deal (or not) for culture
Critical directions: toward a national negro theatre
Producing new dramas: the politics of choice
The unpredictable audience
Acting properly
Table of Contents provided by Publisher. All Rights Reserved.

ISBN: 9780521443593
ISBN-10: 0521443598
Series: Cambridge Studies in American Literature and Culture
Audience: Professional
Format: Hardcover
Language: English
Number Of Pages: 268
Published: 29th April 1994
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
Country of Publication: GB
Dimensions (cm): 22.8 x 15.2  x 1.9
Weight (kg): 0.57