Use this URL to cite or link to this record in EThOS:
Title: The transposition of traditional Thai literature into modern stage drama : the current development of Thai theatre
Author: Kerdarunsuksri, Kittisak.
ISNI:       0000 0001 3597 5340
Awarding Body: School of Oriental and African Studies (University of London)
Current Institution: SOAS, University of London
Date of Award: 2002
Availability of Full Text:
Access from EThOS:
This thesis aims to study the development of Thai theatre in the 1990s by focusing on productions adapted from traditional literary works. The study examines how traditional literary pieces are reinvented and how the characteristics of theatrical presentation are developing. Before the 1990s, Thai theatre practitioners made a few attempts to use traditional literature as a source for modern stage drama. Among them, the prominent productions were Rak thi To 'ng Mantra and Lo'dilokrat, both of which were based on the same novel, Rak thi To 'ng Mantra, adapted from the classic Lilit Phra La '. As a result of the promotion of Thainess and Thai culture in the 1990s, along with the movement of "decolonised theatre" in South East Asia, Thai theatre practitioners turned to their cultural roots in order to make their productions communicate with popular audiences. The transposition of traditional literature into modern stage drama became a dominant form in Thai theatre during the 1990s. The reinvention of traditional literature can be considered as "mythopoeia" or mythmaking, in which theatre practitioners managed to adjust the ancient contents to suit the modern social context. While the productions that merely modernised the traditional stories are regarded as modern mythmaking, those revised so as to address radical ideas are revisionist mythmaking. In reworking traditional literature to comment on contemporary issues, some female theatre practitioners looked into the texts from a feminist perspective, whereas some dramatists employed the traditional works to educate grass-roots spectators about social problems, such as drugs and AIDS. Additionally, the transposition of traditional literature also encouraged the theatre practitioners to revive traditional theatrical elements in creating the atmosphere of the stories. The juxtaposition of traditional and modern elements was a distinctive feature of these productions derived from traditional literary sources, as can be seen in costume and set designs, music and songs, as well as in dance styles. Hence, the transposition of traditional literature during the 1990s is a watershed in the development of Thai theatre.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available
Keywords: Theatrical presentation