UBC Theses and Dissertations

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UBC Theses and Dissertations

Beyond words : the theatre of Griselda Gambaro A’Ness, Francine Mary


Griselda Gambaro is one of Argentina's most well known playwrights, whose dramatic work has made an important contribution to Latin American theatre. While she was a controversial figure of Argentina's avant garde movement of thel960's, her dramatic work has since gained the respect of her contemporaries, the admiration of audiences and the interest of critics both at home and abroad. Her theatre, originally associated with the Theatre of the Absurd, tends to be anti-mimetic and experimental in style, while in thematic content Gambaro remains acutely aware of the changes in her country's recent socio-political climate. The aim of this thesis is firstly to highlight the important contribution Gambaro has made to the Argentinean stage through her attempts to offer alternative forms of theatrical expression to realism; and, secondly, to analyse the evolution of her theatre from the dual perspective of dramatic style and thematic content. In order to better understand Gambaro and her theatre, in chapter one we will situate her in a clearly Argentinean context. In chapter two we will focus in more detail on Gambaro's particular dramatic style, the possible influences that have brought about its genesis and the changes it has undergone in the last three decades. These changes we will see are based upon continued experimentation and a heightening politicization of the playwright herself. The final section of the thesis will illustrate the ideas put forth in chapter two through an analysis of four of her plays. The four plays chosen, El desatino. El campo, Information para extranjeros and Del sol naciente, span the period 1965 to 1983, and can be regarded as representative works for showing the evolution of both stylistic and political concerns within Gambaro's theatre.

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