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2016 | 19 | 1 | 9-36

Article title

Věda jako jednání: Pražský lingvistický kroužek, kulturní aktivismus a myšlení o divadle


Title variants

Scholarship Scholarship as praxis: Prague linguistic circle, cultural activism and thought on theatre

Languages of publication



Structural approach to theatre was developed in the late 1930s and during the WW2 in frame of Prague Circle (“PLC”) as a result of an activist approach to scholarship and close collaboration between theatremakers and scholars. Although the connection between avant-garde aesthetic of 1930s and structuralist writing on theatre has been already described, there are more important relations beyond that generally acknowledged frame. Seminal structuralist essays on theatre were often written as polemics that were addressed, besides regular readers, to the opponents of PLC members. They were also written in the already changed cultural context, where the previous avant-garde model was the object of reflection and overcoming. Furthermore, this approach was driven by the need to explain Avant-Garde theatre to general public by terminology of modern scholarship. The so called Prague theatre structuralism could be therefore seen as a paradigm of scholarship that formulates its theories with respect to science popularisation as well as an attack against other “actors” in the field of theatre studies. The author focuses on the practical and organisational aspect of the PLC. Different modes of collective action in the public space as well as material conditions of existence and financial support are described. Attention is also paid to national and political (leftist) affiliation of the members of the Circle. From this perspective the PLC approach to theatre is analyzed as set of action rather than set o text and ideas.


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


Document Type

Publication order reference


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