De l'animateur au créateur, du profane au sacré. Socio-histoire du théâtre public français. 1945-1990

Abstract : State intervention in theatrical matters is historically based on the social role played by the “popular theatre” after the second world war. In a context of aesthetic transformations and growing institutionalization, the social function of theatre is objectified in the category of a “public theatre” which is differentiated from the merchant one. Through the analysis of the trajectory of the signers of the Declaration of Villeurbanne in 1968, deemed to have introduced the power to creators in the theatrical field, this thesis questions the social role of theater in a socio-historical perspective. The terms of the engagement with the theatrical field in the social world are analyzed through differnte practices revealing the relation of theatre with the society: the widening of the audience and the coming of new viewers, the constitution of a specific directory, and artists' positions in the public debate are all significant. Correlated to the process of professionalization and institutionalization which crosses the field, the analysis of the evolution of these practices emphasizes the progressive demonetization of the social function of the theater between 1945 and the most recent period. This is especially visible through the establishment of two central figures in the theatrical field, the director and the “programmateur”, to the detriment of the cultural leader (the “animateur”). The refocusing of activities on artistic issues contributes to a growing distinction between aesthetic innovation and activities devoted to the relation with the audience. This opposition is objectified by the authorities and contributes to a disqualification of the audience in the process of consecration. A new audience, made of “connaisseurs”, appears : they can apprehend the works that are produced and they tend to reinforce the legitimacy of the dominant agents in the field. These historical transformations contribute to the formation of a legitimate theater opposed to a lay audience. The political issue, which originally founded the public theater category, is gradually reinvested in the perspective of an intrinsically emancipatory art.
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Submitted on : Tuesday, May 9, 2017 - 1:30:24 PM
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Marjorie Glas. De l'animateur au créateur, du profane au sacré. Socio-histoire du théâtre public français. 1945-1990. Histoire. EHESS - Paris, 2016. Français. ⟨tel-01519838⟩

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