This essay draws from Alain Badiou’s perspectives on revolutionary dialectics,and his discussion of Bertolt Brecht’s epic dramaturgy as a strategicappropriation of the mask, to discuss the deployment of narrativedevices of folk storytelling in Brecht’s work. Brecht’s epic dramaturgywas initially informed by oral narrative traditions such as German folktales and songs, and also by experimentations with the formal strategiesof traditional storytelling theatres such as Greek tragedy and JapaneseNoh Theatre. Badiou’s perspectives on dialectical division and the theatrical“dialectic (at-play)” are used to inform an understanding of howGestus as a theatrical language is influenced by the narrative devicesof folk storytelling, encouraging critical thought over lazy consensus,and insisting on division over conformity.
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Perspectives in the Arts and Humanities Asia is a peer-reviewed journal published twice a year by the School of Humanities of the Ateneo de Manila University, Philippines. Multidisciplinary in scope, it welcomes articles in English or Filipino in the following fields: literature, philosophy, theology, performance arts, visual arts, forms of media and other related areas, especially studies engaging Philippine and Asian experience.