'Reading Performance Theory by Richard Schechner again, three decades after its first edition, is like meeting an old friend and finding out how much of him/her has been with you all along this way.' - Augusto Boal
Few have had quite as much impact in both the academy and in the world of theatre production as Richard Schechner. For more than four decades his work has challenged conventional definitions of theatre, ritual, and performance. When this seminal collection first appeared, Schechner's approach was not only novel, it was revolutionary: drama is not just something that occurs on stage, but something full of meaning operating on many levels in everyday life, in both secular and sacred rituals, play, sports, legal processes, and popular entertaiments. Within these pages he examines the connections between Western and non-Western cultures, the performing arts, anthropology, rituals, performance in everyday life, playing, psychotherapy, and shamanism. For this Routledge Classics edition, Schechner has written a new preface, revised and updated Chapter One and added a final chapter. Unparalleled within his field, Schechner redefined what performance means, and in doing so, has contested the boundaries that separated audience and actor ever since.