The Rise of Modern American Drama
Ottilie Schmauß – The Rise of Modern American Drama: From Big Business to Little Theaters
During the 1910s and 1920s, American drama underwent a radical change. With the advent of new scientific developments, unprecedented shifts in the theatrical landscape, and socio-economic changes, new themes were introduced to the American stage. There is probably no other period in American dramatic history that saw equal formal and stylistic experimentation. Of the various dramatic forms that emerged during these years, two stand out as having had a decisive effect on the coming of age of modern American drama: realism and expressionism. This lecture will discuss the nature and history of these two genres and the various forms they come in.
The lecture intends to familiarize students with the genres, themes, and staging conventions of major dramatic works performed during the 1910s and 1920s, as well as equip them with a good understanding of what we mean when we talk about modern American drama.
Ottilie Schmauß is a doctoral student at Giessen University. Her PhD thesis deals with representations of murderous women in modern American drama. Before having taken up her research at the International Graduate Centre for the Study of Culture (GCSC) in October 2010, Ottilie Schmauß studied North American Studies, Modern History, Political Science and Women’s Studies at the University of Bonn, Mount Holyoke College (USA), and the University of Oxford (GB).