Reading and performing uncertainty: Michael Frayn's Copenhagen and the postdramatic theatre

Barnett, David (2005) Reading and performing uncertainty: Michael Frayn's Copenhagen and the postdramatic theatre. Theatre Research International, 30 (2). pp. 139-149. ISSN 0307-8833

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Abstract

Michael Frayn's play about quantum mechanics, memory and history, Copenhagen, has taken a lot Of criticism for 'misrepresenting' its historical characters, primarily Werner Heisenberg. This essay analyses the dramaturgy of the play and argues for a postdramatic reading in which questions of representation are dissolved by formal strategies that ally themselves with the thematics of the work. The text is viewed as a hybrid, somewhere between the dramatic and the postdramatic, set, as it is, in a fictional afterlife where conventional human categories no longer function. The postdramatic theatre, in refusing to interpret text, becomes a viable mode for performance in that the indeterminacy Of meaning on stage equates with the uncertainty principle that lies at the scientific and moral heart of Copenhagen.

Item Type: Article
Schools and Departments: School of English > English
Subjects: P Language and Literature > PN Literature (General) > PN2000 Dramatic representation. The Theater
Depositing User: David Barnett
Date Deposited: 06 Feb 2012 20:08
Last Modified: 09 Jul 2012 13:47
URI: http://srodev.sussex.ac.uk/id/eprint/24279
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