Abstract

This case study of shifting modernisms in Toronto’s Theatre of Action (1936–40) argues that the canonizing tendency to refer to modernism as a singularity plasters over its multiple, contradictory, and contested origins, and maps a genealogical narrative onto the capitals of imperial colonialism. The Theatre of Action’s negotiations, from its origins in the revolutionary modernism of agit-prop and workers’ theatre, through its promotion of disciplinary modernism as modeled on New York theatrical productions, to its final exhausted stage of social realism, can be understood as the improvisatory stances of “rough” modernism in the interstices of metropolitan and imperial cultural dominance.

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Additional Information

ISSN
1086-332X
Print ISSN
0192-2882
Pages
pp. 507-522
Launched on MUSE
2014-01-06
Open Access
No
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