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This section is on radical puppetry's rich political and artistic tradition. It includes resources on the history of puppetry and the history of protest through puppetry. You will find books, academic articles, and periodical publications on the topic. You will also find links to some digital and physical collections that were formed to preserve the legacy of radical puppetry.
Publication Date: 2005-07-01
Puppets have existed in one form or another in nearly every culture throughout human history. From the intriguing shadow puppets of Java to the romantically challenged Miss Piggy, from African carved-wood actors with outsize genitalia to merry maniac Mr. Punch, puppets are incredibly diverse, reflecting the varied cultures, environments, and personalities of their creators. In this lavishly illustrated volume, Eileen Blumenthal provides a comprehensive overview of the history and techniques of puppetry, examining the unique nature and abilities of puppets and illustrating the countless roles they (and their creators) have played in societies across the globe for thousands of years. She draws on examples from an astonishing array of puppeteers, performances, and historical artifacts, providing readers with an in-depth view of this intricate world of constructed actors and the eclectic, and often eccentric, artists who create them. With a lively and accessible text and a wealth of illustrations, this one-of-a kind volume will be treasured by lovers of both visual and theater arts.
Dramas, Fields, and Metaphors by
Publication Date: 1975-10-31
In this book, Victor Turner is concerned with various kinds of social actions and how they relate to, and come to acquire meaning through, metaphors and paradigms in their actors' minds; how in certain circumstances new forms, new metaphors, new paradigms are generated. To describe and clarify these processes, he ranges widely in history and geography: from ancient society through the medieval period to modern revolutions, and over India, Africa, Europe, China, and Meso-America. Two chapters, which illustrate religious paradigms and political action, explore in detail the confrontation between Henry II and Thomas Becket and between Hidalgo, the Mexican liberator, and his former friends. Other essays deal with long-term religious processes, such as the Christian pilgrimage in Europe and the emergence of anti-caste movements in India. Finally, he directs his attention to other social phenomena such as transitional and marginal groups, hippies, and dissident religious sects, showing that in the very process of dying they give rise to new forms of social structure or revitalized versions of the old order.
The Theater Is in the Street by
Publication Date: 2004-07-01
Explores the link between cultural expression and political protest; During the 1960s, the SNCC Freedom Singers, The Living Theatre, the Diggers, the Art Workers Coalition, and the Guerrilla Art Action Group fused art and politics by staging unexpected and uninvited performances in public spaces. Through their activism and the response it provoked, art, theater, and politics began to converge and assume a new visibility in everyday life. While their specific political visions varied, these groups shared the impulse to stage performances and actions publicly - in the streets - eschewing museums, theaters, and other conventional halls of culture. Bradford D. Martin offers detailed portraits of each of these groups and examines why they embraced public performance as a vehicle to express and advance their politics. At a time when the New Left and the counterculture were on the rise, these artists reflected the decade's political and cultural radicalism and helped to define a new aesthetic. Civil rights activists mobilized singing in the struggle for desegregation, introducing a vibrant musical form into the public space. goals, leading audiences from theaters into the streets to begin the beautiful nonviolent anarchist revolution. The Diggers playfully engaged San Francisco's counterculture in politics with their carnivalesque public actions. The Art Workers Coalition and the Guerrilla Action Art Group sought to disrupt the conventional art world, mounting protests in and around New York City museums. By questioning the values and assumptions that separated art from politics, these groups not only established public performance as a legitimate aesthetic but also provided a new creative vocabulary for future generations of artists. Their continued involvement with the women's liberation movement, rural communes, and political street theater into the 1970s and beyond challenges the popular myth that activists disengaged from politics after the 1960s.
A short history of radical puppetry
Mogg, K. (2006) “A Short History of Radical Puppetry.” Libcom.org. https://libcom.org/history/articles/radical-puppetry.
Dance of dogs
Deller, B. (2006). Dance of dogs: The radical heritage of folk puppetry. Ohio State University: Department of Comparative Studies Honors Thesis. Retrieved from http://hdl.handle.net/1811/6078.
MayDay History- HOBT
The spring of 1975 was our first MayDay Festival. Our original impetus for this Festival was quite simple. We wanted to give a gift to the community that was supporting our theatre, and to create a celebration that would bring people together out of their homes at the end of winter.
Archive.org: Bread and Puppet
The archive is almost 200 hours long and is the raw hand-held rough record of 10 years of the Bread and Puppet’s big summer circuses. The record is not only the performances, but the life and work of the people who were the makers of the shows: the community of cooks and carpenters, gardeners and dishwashers, staplers and stitchers, poets and paper masheyers, bakers and bean counters, singers and salad makers, whistlers and weed wackers, who came every summer to live and create beneath the indigo skies of Vermont's Northeast Kingdom.
Museum: Bread and Puppet
The Bread and Puppet Museum is a massive accumulation of the puppets, masks, paintings and graphics of the Bread and Puppet Theater, housed in a 150-year-old barn in Vermont’s Northeast Kingdom, 25 miles south of the Canadian border. It is one of the largest collections of some of the biggest puppets and masks in the world. It was created in 1974 when Bread and Puppet Theater moved to this former dairy farm after a residency at Goddard College, and before that close to a decade in New York City. The museum is full to the brim; its population density is an expression not only of the accumulations of time but of the urgencies which inspired the making of so much stuff: the poverty of the poor, the arrogance of the war-mongers, the despair of the victims, and maybe even stronger than that, the glory of this whole god-given world. And naturally, all this will decay in due course.