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Macbeth after Shakespeare
Of Heiner Muller's several variations on Shakespeare texts, his Macbeth after Shakespeare was perhaps the most divisive. Soon after the 1971 publication of the script, the philosopher Wolfgang Harich, among others, attacked Muller for the pessimism and vulgarity of his interpretation, which brought to the text a preoccupation, then common in West German culture, with violence and pornography. By 1972, Muller had published a commentary explaining his approach: From the first scene, he felt the need for modification; he wanted to remove the idea of predestination. So, no witches or supernatural forces appear in Muller's text. Instead, the action of the play fits into a history of violence with no beginning and no end. Each murder leads to others, and the cycle of violence becomes more and more horrible at each turn. Muller has condensed the work; crimes follow one another with increasing speed. the monologues are radically shortened; there are no more moments of reflection and scruples. the playwright shows no hesitation in making his heroes even darker. He presents no one in a positive light. In the instructions at the beginning of the third scene, even King Duncan is sitting on a heap of corpses arranged in the shape of a throne. Macbeth is a bloody tyrant merely continuing the work of some other bloody tyrant.
Original Playwright - Heiner Muller
Mini teater and Novo kazaliste Zagreb
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If Publisher (above) is underlined then the play may be purchased by direct click from the Publisher, otherwise (below) are AbeBooks for secondhand, signed & 1st eds and other Booksellers for new copies
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