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The paradoxical Peking opera : performing tradition, history, and politics in 1949-1967 China


This dissertation investigates three types of jingju plays known during 1949-1967 for their innovative or invented features, so as to explore the ramifications brought about by the theatre censorship, the confrontation of traditions and inventions, the dilemmas and challenges of both artists and reformers, and the paradoxical dynamics of the relationship between form and content. By analyzing a paradoxical jingju created by both reformers and artists-- the paradox of making a modern opera reflecting contemporary history and preserving traditional performance features; the contradiction of acting conventions and realistic stage scenography; the confrontation of actors' aesthetic methodologies and the directors' considerations, it argues that, since 1919 it was the China-induced forces, rather than the colonial modernization of the pre-1949, that reshaped jingju, its history and its politics

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