Realism vs. Naturalism

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  • Realism and Naturalism Theatre Conventions
    • Realism
      • Characters are believable
        • Dialogue is heightened for effect but vernacular
        • Often the protagonist rises up against the odds against an injustice
      • Authentic costumes
      • Realist movement greatly influenced 20th century theatre
        • Henrik Ibsen considered the 'father of realism'
      • Triggered by Stanislavski (turn of the 20th century)
      • Stage settings/props often indoors and believable
        • Often bland
      • 'Box set' normally used- three walls and invisible fourth wall facing the audience
      • Play is usually psychological
        • Plot is secondary
        • Characters: lives, motives and reactions are primary
    • Naturalism
      • It was short-lived as a theatrical movement
      • Stage time = Real time
      • Extreme/ heightened form of realism
      • Explores the concept of scientific determinism
        • Characters are shaped by their circumstances
          • Often considered victims of their own circumstance
          • Often working class
  • Costumes, sets, props all historically accurate and detailed
    • Offering a 'slice of life'
    • Naturalism
      • It was short-lived as a theatrical movement
      • Stage time = Real time
      • Extreme/ heightened form of realism
      • Explores the concept of scientific determinism
        • Characters are shaped by their circumstances
          • Often considered victims of their own circumstance
          • Often working class
    • Settings bland and ordinary
  • Follows the 'three unities' as set down by Aristotle
    • Time
      • Jumps in time not allowed
    • Place
      • Changing places not allowed
    • Action
      • Takes place in a single location over the time frame of a single day
  • Explore sordid subject matter
    • Previously considered Taboo

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