© 2017

Theatre, Globalization and the Cold War

  • Christopher B. Balme
  • Berenika Szymanski-Düll

Part of the Transnational Theatre Histories book series (TTH)

Table of contents

  1. Front Matter
    Pages i-xv
  2. Christopher B. Balme, Berenika Szymanski-Düll
    Pages 1-22
  3. Shifting Borders: Tours and Touring

  4. Institutions and Institutional Imbrications

  5. Acting, Artists and Art Between the Battlefronts

  6. Postcolonial Perspectives

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 271-271

About this book


This book examines how the Cold War had a far-reaching impact on theatre by presenting a range of current scholarship on the topic from scholars from a dozen countries. They represent in turn a variety of perspectives, methodologies and theatrical genres, including not only Bertolt Brecht, Jerzy Grotowski and Peter Brook, but also Polish folk-dancing, documentary theatre and opera production. The contributions demonstrate that there was much more at stake and a much larger investment of ideological and economic capital than a simple dichotomy between East versus West or socialism versus capitalism might suggest. Culture, and theatrical culture in particular with its high degree of representational power, was recognized as an important medium in the ideological struggles that characterize this epoch. Most importantly, the volume explores how theatre can be reconceptualized in terms of transnational or even global processes which, it will be argued, were an integral part of Cold War rivalries.


transnational theatre global history cold war theatre communist theatre cultural representation govermnmental involvement touring ensembles political theatre politicised theatre agitprop international relations socialist culture state-run theatres racial politics postcolonial theatre creative tensions global impliactions censorship propaganda surveillance

Editors and affiliations

  • Christopher B. Balme
    • 1
  • Berenika Szymanski-Düll
    • 2
  1. 1.Ludwig-Maximilians-UniversitätMunichGermany
  2. 2.Ludwig-Maximilians-UniversitätMunichGermany

About the editors

Christopher Balme holds the Chair in Theatre Studies at the Ludwig Maximilian University of Munich, Germany. His current research interests focus on the legacy of modernism in the globalization of the arts; theatre and the public sphere; and the relationship between media and performance. He is director of the Global Theatre Histories project.

Berenika Szymanski-Düll is Lecturer in Theatre Studies at the Ludwig Maximilian University of Munich, Germany. Her current research interests include international touring theatre in the 19th century, theatre and migration and Performance Art in Eastern Europe during the Cold War. She is an associate of the Global Theatre Histories research project. 

Bibliographic information


Theatre, Globalization, and the Cold War brings together a diverse group of scholars to broaden examples and ultimately understandings of the role of theatrical culture during the Cold War. The transnational focus of this collection places more familiar sites alongside less studied ‘battlefields,’ in order to consider the many ways that power was contested in and through performance.” (Kate Elswit, author of “Watching Weimar Dance”)