Neil Cornwell
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Around the absurd II
The Theatre of the Absurd
in The absurd in literature
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This chapter studies the concept of the Theatre of the Absurd, which is based on the precepts of Antonin Artaud, and goes on to describe Artaud as the bridge between the present Theatre of the Absurd and the pioneers of the concept. It then identifies the five major dramatists of the absurd: Arthur Adamov, Eugène Ionesco, Harold Pinter, Samuel Beckett and Jean Genet. The chapter focuses on the works of these dramatists – except for Beckett – and views the Theatre of the Absurd in (Soviet) Russia and in east Europe (during the Cold War).

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