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Issue Details: First known date: 2015... 2015 Poetry and Risk : On the Similarities between Recital and Composition
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'‘Every time,’ Brazilian director, teacher, writer and erstwhile politician, Augusto Boal claims, ‘an actor plays a character, he or she plays it for the first and last time. Like we play every minute of our own lives’ (Boal 2002: 38). This article concerns the experiment of making by heart recitals of canonical twentieth century poems a compulsory assessment item in a creative writing unit. It details some surprising results of that experiment. One is that students demonstrated more capacity to develop a confident aesthetic about the rights and wrongs of their peers’ recitals than when engaging in similar group discussions about those same students’ verse compositions. The paper suggests that this disparity had to do with the students’ broad literacy in relation to acting, compared to their relative illiteracy in relation to what can be done in verse. It makes the further claim, with reference to Boal’s Games for Actors and Non-Actors (Boal 2002), Stephen Berkoff’s I am Hamlet (Berkoff 1989) and other texts, that this situation might not be as hopeless as it sounds. Could it be that by heart recitals brought these students closer to that form of creativity they actually already well know from film, stage and life, but need to get on the page: the one to do with inhabiting the tensions of the moment, and acting them out? For they also seemed to be writing much better poems.' (Publication abstract)

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Last amended 8 Nov 2018 09:15:58 Poetry and Risk : On the Similarities between Recital and Compositionsmall AustLit logo TEXT : Journal of Writing and Writing Courses