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Rupturing the stage:h[electronic resource] : : performing women in Brian Friel's theatre


This dissertation analyzes contemporary Irish playwright Brian Friel's dramatization of the doubly oppressed Irish female who is victimized not only by the British colonizer, but also by the Irish men who seek compensation for their own colonized status. Friel uses the stage to speak to this question by representing the trauma of the doubly oppressed female and giving voice to this otherwise silenced figure. Despite scholarly attention to Friel, little work has been done to examine the treatment of women in his plays. Through the use of feminist, post- colonial, and trauma theory, I examine Friel's use of a specific theatrical technique, the moment of rupture, where his female characters break out of their normal speech patterns to enter into an awareness of their trauma. This dissertation explores how Friel employs this device in The Freedom of the City, Translations, and Dancing at Lughnasa to steer his audience to and through the moral and political issue of women's disempowerment

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