A Semiotics of the Dramatic Text by Susan Melrose

By Susan Melrose

Is "theatre semiology" now background? Melrose's booklet argues that theatre perform maintains to use either a posh net of "spontaneous semiologies" (Bourdieu), and the "arts de faire" (or arts of creating do) defined by means of Michel de Certeau. In drawing on either the habitus and the "practices of daily life", Melrose makes an attempt to track among tested theoretical fields and fields of perform, a discursive direction which would allow a renewed semiotic method of dramatic theatre's assorted economics. Susan Melrose is the writer of "Eating Out".

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For our present purpose, focused on the relationship between dramatic writing and other theatre practice, and bearing in mind the different notions of semiosis we have briefly examined in the preceding chapter, we need to retain as tentative and pragmatic guidelines to our critical enqUiry, a field marked by certain peaks which continue to show up within theatre practice as we know it: dramatic writing activated by practitioners in the context of a planned staging within a given cultural context; somatic action; semiosis; idealisation and options for realisation; the metteur en scene, the actor, character, the spectator, and their possible roles and relations.

268). He goes on: We recall that ... the tripartite semiotic theory of the Stoics, for whom the 'sign' included the "signifier, the signified, and the 'conjuncture'" [... ,] was reduced to a binary relation between signifier and signified in the seventeenth century. (p. 268) The blending of pickings from Peirce and Saussure served a need in theatre semioticians working within the European tradition at that time, and not the least because of the delicacy of working with the heterogeneous complexity of a dramatic theatre, and of a dramatic theatre theory then intent on privileging the ambiguous materiality of the stage in place of the relative or apparent uniformity of the written text.

But how do we set 46 A Semiotics of the Dramatic Text these out on the page, and clearly enough, without reactivating the very conventions we now seek to reassess? Writing and socio-somatic practice What are the stages in the recent history of cultural analysis which have led to this new understanding of the place and function of writing and language within socio-somatic practice, rather than the opposite where the body is seen as ancillary to, equivalent to or inferior to language? g. linguistics, literary theory, discourse analysis, anthropology, ethnography), is marked by a renewed interrogation of the established and possible relationships between language and other modes of human action.

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