Ethics In Theatre Essay

3555 words - 15 pages

Ethics in Theatre
Theatre is a form of communication that has been influencing the world for thousands of years. At its most basic form, theatre is story-telling. However, today’s modern society has pushed theatre to be bolder and bigger in order to stay above the waters. Much of this has come with the sacrifice of morality in order to have the most “shock factor”. This brings about the question, can theatre maintain Christian principles without hindering communication and the development of art, especially in a modern society? With a deep analysis on different aspects of ethics in theatre such as community, technology, duty, and propaganda it is very clear that in order to be true ...view middle of the document...

However, the main question that always rises is who decides what is ethical? Because what may be unethical to you, may not be to me. Ethics is categorizing values, or truths (Landauer). The sophists were one of the earliest group of philosophers to figure out how we know what we know; this is called sophistic epistemology. We discover truth through our sense, but since the senses are flawed, we can never fully truth. Then Plato challenge the idea by stating that we live in a world of shadows. We find truth, the forms, through the use of rhetoric and communication, and theatre is one of the greatest forms of communicating. Aristotle wrote a book on ethics called Nicomachean Ethics where he came to the conclusion that the main purpose of human life was to follow the law and live a virtuous life (“Aristotle”). He recognized that theatre is a crucial part of living a virtuous life because it allowed for a purging of emotions. Aristotle was able to recognize that the action was the very soul of drama and that a purging of emotions through pity and terror, especially in a tragedy, made it easier for one to follow the law (Bellinger). Just as each community defines what is ethical, as does each theatre, but in order for a theatre to maintain its purpose, it must always chose the most interesting choice over the most ethical choice.
Theatre is an extension of life, an expression of the unconscious, a school where one is always learning, a stimulation of imagination, not imitation but creation. Asking the main purpose of theatre is like asking the main purpose of people- you will get many different views based on varying opinions. However, all of the theatre world will agree that theatre is about provoking thought among the audience. The main goal of theatre is not to teach a lesson or interpret the text for the audience, but rather to host a conversation between the play and the audience (Opinion: The Purpose of the Theater is to Present Themes, Not to Teach Lessons to the Audience”). As humans, we seek pleasure and avoid pain and anything that makes our happiness last longer is better. Theatre is all about the human struggles of seeking pleasure; it is an extension of life and is all about choosing the highest stakes to astonish and shock and tantalize by avoiding the safe route. It is all about evoking, not preaching. However, there are some who are highly against theatre because they think is it a misrepresentation of truth; they see it as “a school of vice and profligacy” (“The Christian and the Theater”). Aristotle articulates that “Tragedy [drama] is an imitation, not of men, but of actions” (Bellinger). It is merely an exaggeration of everyday life that is represented by real people. Theatre is necessary for the freedom of the soul. The exploration of possibilities and ethical conflict raises profound questions (Dutton). These questions of morality have been around since the beginning of time, making the purpose of theatre timeless.
Even...

Other Essays Like Ethics in Theatre

Humanities: Middle Ages Essay

2439 words - 10 pages push the boundaries & discover the extraordinary ability of the human mind by learning poetry, grammar, ethics & rhetoric. They are focused on the classics & reviving the greatness of the Greek & Roman golden age. Reasoning & Empiricism were employed in their study of texts from Antiquity. As such Plato, Aristotle & Socrates came to known of renaissance influences in intellectual thought. They influenced the likes of Niccolo Machiavelli who in his

Ttherapeutic Relationships in Nursing Essay

3731 words - 15 pages feelings and their meaning.’ During my first placement there was no opportunity to form true therapeutic relationships with the patients because patients had an approximately 6 – 8 hour stay in which time the patient was admitted, went to theatre and then recovered within 2 hours of leaving theatre. Most of the time I only saw patients for a short period of time and did not get to speak to the patients that much because of the patients

The Industrial Revolution

2945 words - 12 pages , and as the Industrial Revolution moved along it was common for workers to take Monday’s off extending their one-day off called “holy Monday’s”(Stearns p.60). The Industrial Revolution can be seen as a war theatre during these times where factory owners progressively transformed work habits, and workers constantly battled the working conditions. Later in the Industrial Revolution we begin to see a compromise workers were more inclined to follow

Harvard Reference

5382 words - 22 pages heading OR n.p. (no page number) Author prominent Information prominent Theatre or Concert ticket The ticket for the PJ Harvey Concert (2012) contains a digital barcode. Bell (dir. 2011) describes the contemporary scenery used in the play. The design includes an image of the venue (PJ Harvey Concert 2012) Quoting (less than 10% of total word count) *page or paragraph number always required * use single quotation marks for quotes *use double

Cypw Shc 31

4269 words - 18 pages inform. - To compliment. - To experience. - To soothe others. - To gain attention. - To conduct business. - For pleasure (film, music, art, theatre) - For emotional intimacy and well-being. In the children and young people setting communication is extremely significant. For example commuting with parents can help us to understand what they hope to achieve by placing their child in our care. We may need to communicate to other

Sizwe Bansi Is Dead

5457 words - 22 pages is nothing we can leave behind when we die, except a memory of ourselves." But sometimes you must die so you can live – and that's the case with one of his customers, whose story is told in this devised play created by Athol Fugard, John Kani and Winston Ntshona in 1972. In Matthew Xia's revival, the segregation of the audience by race as we enter the theatre is a reminder of the brutalities of the apartheid regime. The paradox of Sizwe Banzi's

Unit IV AP European History

8861 words - 36 pages naval and commercial power of the Western world. England consolidated its position with the defeat of the Spanish Armada in 1588, and Elizabeth firmly established the Church of England begun by her father, King Henry VIII following his annulled marriage by the Catholic church. Shakespeare was writing for the theatre during the reigns of two monarchs, Queen Elizabeth I and King James I. The plays he wrote during the reign of Queen Elizabeth, such as

The Separation Of Capital Ownership And Control

1577 words - 7 pages The argument of whether the separation of capital ownership and control is an efficient form of organization has constantly been a controversial issue. The criticism whether the controllers’ act is in the best interest of the owners’ wills never end as long as hired managers operate management. As the number of public companies has been increasing over the course of this century, meanwhile the American style of contact based corporation has

The Versatility And Flexibility Of OLED's

1014 words - 5 pages In April 1, 2002, organic light emitting diodes gain rise in the scientific community with their published, more practical form at Ames Laboratory. “Scientists at the U.S. Department of Energy's Ames Laboratory, in collaboration with scientists at the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, have developed and demonstrated a novel, fluorescence-based chemical sensor that is more compact, versatile and less expensive than existing technology of its

Comparing The Moral Virtues Of Antony And Julian The Apostate

1103 words - 5 pages Roman emperor Julian the Apostate and Christian leader Antony both exhibited many qualities of character during their existence. Both of them led very distinctive lives although shared several ethical values. Book 25 of “The Later Roman Empire” and the book “Early Christian Lives” show concrete evidence of this. In the following essay, I will argue how both leaders’ lives were devoted to their religious beliefs and their mutual cardinal virtues

Living In A Cashless Society

1637 words - 7 pages Money in a traditional sense no longer exists. Money is becoming much of a concept than a physical material, and most ordinary bitter have not see the reality of the switch. People today are using credit and debit cards on a regular basis and in everyday situations such as meal purchased at fast food, highway tolls, clothing, groceries, gas stations, etc. all of these means of systems could be regarded as a cashless society or world. The

Related Papers

Ethics And Corporate Governace Essay

4358 words - 18 pages figure in ancient Greek Philosophy, making assistance to logic, metaphysics, mathematics, physics, biology, botany, ethics, politics, agriculture, medicine, dance and theatre. He was a student of Plato. He was more analytically-minded than Plato or Socrates and famous for discarding Plato’s theory of forms. Aristotle completely changed most areas of information he touched. In his time, Aristotle composed as many as 200 dissertations, of which only

The Tools That Shaped Cicero's Political Ideologies

2312 words - 10 pages compressed eloquence. ".In Stoic ethics, "only the wise man is capable of virtue, and his actions, and only his are morally right actions. ". The distinguishing feature of this belief is the frame of mind that it is done; An unwise man could apply the same actions as a wise man but the unwise man's actions will falter because he is unwise . The Stoics, like Socrates, argued that, " the best, most virtuous, and most divine life was one lived according

Brave New World Essay

2007 words - 9 pages by technology. The primary source of entertainment is the "feelies," a type of movie theatre in which all the senses are artificially created. Instead of feeling the emotions portrayed on screen, the audience absorbs stimulated sensations. These stimulations prevent them from free thought, which threatens society by denying people from experiencing their own creativity and imagination. Individual expression is prevented by the lack of art and

Race And The South Essay

2593 words - 11 pages saw the racial attitudes in the South as backward and retrogressive. Tennessee Williams, the author of Cat on a Hot Tin Roof, despite being of Southern origin detested the racist attitudes in the South. In fact, Cat on a Hot Tin Roof is one of the few books whose theatre version has been played by an all Black cast. (Once pure White,American Classics cross the colour line 2008)Tennessee Williams seems to support the rights of all persecuted