Full-text resources of CEJSH and other databases are now available in the new Library of Science.
Visit https://bibliotekanauki.pl


2020 | 23 | 1 | 131-149

Article title

The vacant utopia : reflecting on the first Polish post-war staging of The Tempest


Title variants

Languages of publication



In 1947 Leon Schiller staged The Tempest as his first post-war Shakespeare play. From today's perspective, his choice possibly reveals the intention to counter the harshness of post-war reality or to display a sense of an unbroken connection to pre-war efforts. However, the inherent utopianism of The Tempest coupled with all too fervent championing of his own theatrical theory laid bare the vanity of Schiller's endeavours. Furthermore, the new translation of the play turned out defective, as it was found to be coalesced with the 19th century canonical Polish version. Schiller's partisan aspirations raise additional doubts as to his motivations. Several central ideas of the play were lost in this staging, leaving one to doubt whether the utopic character of the play was been contaminated by the new hope the Soviet regime brought with it. Reviewing this production of The Tempest can provide insights into an interim period when cultural processes in Poland were moulding, a new Polish Shakespearean canon was but anticipated, and Kott's Shakespeare, Our Contemporary (1964) had yet to enter the stage.


  • Theatralia, redakce, Masarykova univerzita, Filozofická fakulta, Katedra divadelních studií, Arna Nováka 1, 602 00 Brno, Czech Republic


Document Type

Publication order reference


YADDA identifier

JavaScript is turned off in your web browser. Turn it on to take full advantage of this site, then refresh the page.