Kateb Yacine's Popular Theatre: A Journey of Democracy and Cultural Liberation in Modern Algeria

Ziani, Manel and Rowe, Cami and Juers-Munby, Karen (2024) Kateb Yacine's Popular Theatre: A Journey of Democracy and Cultural Liberation in Modern Algeria. PhD thesis, Lancaster University.

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This thesis explores the distinctive characteristics of Kateb Yacine's popular theatre as a form separate from the francophone literary repertoire. By situating Kateb's theatrical works within a philosophical framework informed by theories of praxis, dialogue, open-endedness, and multivocality, this study offers an analysis of his role as a postcolonial intellectual and his intellectual approach in creating a theatrical foundation for democracy and education. These theories diverge from the literary norms by emphasizing practicality, dynamic interaction, and diverse perspectives and meanings. Through an examination of the relationship between Kateb's aesthetic techniques and the complex voices and meanings they generate across three case studies, the thesis argues that his theatre emerged organically from the social, cultural, and political circumstances in which it originated. The research demonstrates that Kateb's deliberate theatrical choices, such as using dialect and other vernacular techniques rooted in tradition, were effective in engaging audiences and maintaining ongoing educational situations on various levels, encompassing the political, cultural, and social spheres. By engaging with international theatrical approaches and practices, including those of Brecht, the thesis situates Kateb within the global theatre of education, oppression, and political activism, while also highlighting his theatre's autonomy from mere experimentation with Western techniques. In conclusion, this thesis asserts that Kateb Yacine, by delving into the traditional roots of popular culture, established a modern theatre that deserves recognition for its ability to provide an encompassing education within contemporary Algeria. His theatrical repertoire not only reflects the sociopolitical background of his time but also serves as a potent tool for reclaiming critical thinking, cultural dialogue, and democratic ideals in Algerian society.

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14 Jun 2024 15:10
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16 Jul 2024 06:08