New PDF release: Censorship of the American Theatre in the Twentieth Century

By John H. Houchin

ISBN-10: 0511061315

ISBN-13: 9780511061318

ISBN-10: 0521818192

ISBN-13: 9780521818193

Arguing that theatrical censorship coincides with major demanding situations to spiritual, political and cultural traditions, John Houchin explores its effect on twentieth-century American theatre. besides the well known instance of the home Un-American actions Committee within the Nineteen Fifties, different nearly both influential occasions affected the process the yankee level through the century. After a precis of censorship in eighteenth- and nineteenth-century the USA, Houchin analyzes key political and theatrical occasions among 1900 and 2000.

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74 Some Bostonians, however, still objected to the fact that an illegal theatre was operating in Boston. The most ardent opponent of the New Exhibition Room was none other than Governor John Hancock. He considered the presentation of plays a direct challenge to the authority of the state and ordered Boston officials to close the theatre. On December 5, 1792, during a performance of The School for Scandal, Boston’s sheriff arrested Harper. The audience on that evening, composed primarily of young men, was incensed at being deprived of their entertainment.

If the theatre were to become a respectable institution, worthy of middle-class patronage, prostitutes (read the “nude women” of burlesque) would have to be banished from the stage, just as they had been removed from the third tier. Thus, the challenge posed by the appearance of transgressive women on the burlesque stage resonated throughout the larger culture, as the female body became contested political terrain. Whatever group controlled the representation of women would also dictate the limits of erotic expression and boundaries of sexual relationships.

As early as 1845 he had already begun to advertise for the “right” type of woman by promising to exclude the “wrong” type from his exhibition area. ”88 OV ER T U R E : F R O M T H E P U R I TA N S T O A N T H O N Y CO M S T O C K  He expanded upon this strategy when he opened his newly renovated “Lecture Room” in 1850. Although this space was one of the finest production facilities of the period, he never advertised it as a theatre. 89 He refused to sell alcohol and would not tolerate rowdy or boisterous behavior, thereby removing the markers of male dominance from his theatre.

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Censorship of the American Theatre in the Twentieth Century by John H. Houchin


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