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Benjamin, Walter - Illuminations - Theatre



Type of Spiritual Experience



A description of the experience

Walter Benjamin - Illuminations

Epic theare allows for a circumstance which has been too little noticed.  It may be called the filling in of the orchestra pit.

The abyss which separates the players from the audience as it does the dead from the living; the abyss whose silence in a play heightens the sublimity, whose resonance in an opera heightens the intoxication - this abyss of all elements of the theatre the one that bears the most indelible traces of its ritual origin, has steadily decreased in significance.

The stage is still raised, but it no longer rises from an unfathomable depth; it has become a dais.

The didactic play and the epic theatre are attempts to sit down on a dais.

The source of the experience

Benjamin, Walter

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