Theatre and Holy Script


Shimon Levy
Brighton, UK: Sussex Academic Press, 1999

החוקר.ת מאחורי המחקר

Table of Contents (PDF)


"This collection of essays about drama and religion examines theatrical elements in sacred performance and sacred elements in dramatic performances, primarily in Judeo-Christian traditions. Each of a score of scholars selects a case study where a performance creates an atmosphere of sanctity. The authors write about tenth-century Benedictine rule, about Norwegian rock art, about the force of Fate behind the ancient Greek gods, stage space and spiritual quality, a 'sacramental aesthetic', the purimspiel, Artaud's subjective space, Grotowski's 'objective drama', Christianity and Judaism in the work of Claudel, Biblical quotation in the work of Tabori, religious implication of drama from the Holocaust, holy scriptures and subversive theatre in Poland, Slavonic and Lithuanian rites, Rabin's assassination and stage sacrifice, and about the Bruria of an all-woman theatre troupe - an excellent and much needed discussion on a topic for too long neglected. Their success calls for sequels to this volume that focus on theatrical production and religious rite in Africa, Asia, and South America."


Dunbar H. Ogden, Department of Dramatic Art, University of California, Berkeley


This anthology focuses on the peculiar "love-and-hate" relationship between Holiness and Theatricality. The interrelationships between myth, religion, and theatre are explored by investigating the unique treatment of theatricality, ritual and performance in the Holy Scriptures, and in other sacred traditions. Traditional Jewish Halachic oppositions towards theatre are discussed, as well as the way theatre was harnessed to promote Christian values.


Shimon Levy is a well-known theatre director and the author of The Three I's in Samuel Beckett's Drama and Here, There and Everywhere: Notions of Comparative Space in Canadian and Israeli Drama. His forthcoming The Bible as Theatre will be published in 1999.

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