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Ruined Families: A Study on the Play "A Lie of the Mind", by Sam Shepard

Grant number: 13/06192-9
Support Opportunities:Scholarships in Brazil - Master
Effective date (Start): August 01, 2013
Effective date (End): March 31, 2015
Field of knowledge:Linguistics, Literature and Arts - Literature - Modern Foreign Literatures
Principal Investigator:Maria Sílvia Betti
Grantee:Gabriela Tozzo Schumann
Host Institution: Faculdade de Filosofia, Letras e Ciências Humanas (FFLCH). Universidade de São Paulo (USP). São Paulo , SP, Brazil

Abstract

This project's intent is on studying the play A Lie of the Mind from the point of view of the dramaturgic representation of family. Its author, Sam Shepard, born in 1943, has been a very prolific playwright. Acting in Off- (and Off-Off-) Broadway, he kept himself outside of the commercial circuit and his theater deals with themes such as the mythology of the American West, the American Dream and the American family. Shepard's dramatic production is generally divided into two phases: the initial, more experimental one and the more mature one, generally defined as "realist", to which plays such A Lie of the Mind would belong, as they are seen as more conventional than the previous ones. The adjectives "conventional" and "realist" are problematic for the definition of Shepard's work. That is one of the subjects in this project, mainly in relation to the expressionist characteristics of A Lie and other formal elements that distance it from drama. More specifically, A Lie is inserted into the category of "Family Play", in which it shares with other plays not only the theme, but also other issues, including formal ones, which will in this study be discussed in relation to the play.After acknowledging the expressionist and/ or family-related elements and those of the depiction of the West, the next step will be to aim at mapping how these elements interact with the social-political-historical context of the play, what will probably lead us to discussions that relate to Modernity (or Postmodernity) and the issue of how the contemporary subject is presented and its consequences.

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Academic Publications
(References retrieved automatically from State of São Paulo Research Institutions)
SCHUMANN, Gabriela Tozzo. Ruined families: a Study on the play A lie of the Mind, by Sam Shepard. 2015. Master's Dissertation - Universidade de São Paulo (USP). Faculdade de Filosofia, Letras e Ciências Humanas (FFLCH/SBD) São Paulo.

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