Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item: http://scholarbank.nus.edu.sg/handle/10635/20405
Title: Hamlet/Hamlet in Asia: Intercultural performance as a paradigm for identity and discourse
Authors: NG HUI RU ELEINE
Keywords: Shakespeare, Intercultural, Asian performance, Shakespeare performance, Asia, interculturalism
Issue Date: 19-Aug-2009
Source: NG HUI RU ELEINE (2009-08-19). Hamlet/Hamlet in Asia: Intercultural performance as a paradigm for identity and discourse. ScholarBank@NUS Repository.
Abstract: The current debate on intercultural Asian Shakespeare suffers from two major deficiencies. On one hand, most of the literature on interculturalism tends to adopt a Eurocentric perspective in analyzing intercultural texts and performances. On the other hand, critiques of Asian Shakespeare are usually restricted to area studies, and offer little comparative scope. Thus, this thesis aims to document and differentiate Asian Shakespeare performance practices from European Shakespeare in the West. This thesis addresses these shortcomings by starting from a re-examination of the history of Shakespeare in Japan, China and Singapore. Such a comparative analysis sheds light on the diverse reasons for and approaches to appropriating Shakespeare in Asia, and provides a historical overview of how the concept of interculturalism has developed over time. The notion of Shakespeare?s universality is therefore challenged, as the intercultural Shakespearean performances discussed suggest how Asian Shakespeare is not only expanding the boundaries of Shakespeare as a cultural field, but redefining how we conceptualize ?Shakespeare? and modern Shakespearean adaptations. Following this historical review, the paper moves on to highlighting the changing dynamics between Shakespeare and Asian Shakespeare performances. Three Asian Hamlet productions from Japan, China and Singapore are analyzed to examine how identity and intercultural discourse are constructed and interrogated through the divergent representations of a single Shakespearean text. The restaging of Hamlet through various Asian cultural, historical and socio-political contexts demonstrates that Shakespeare?s text engages with and is suitable for practiced and performed interculturality. The analysis of these Asian Hamlet performances also reinforces the significance of the research on performance within the field of intercultural Shakespeare. The examination of the interaction and exchanges between diverse staging strategies and performance traditions within Asian Shakespearean performances, demonstrates how Asian Shakespeare(s) reveal the potential for new research directions in the discursive field of intercultural Shakespeare.
URI: http://scholarbank.nus.edu.sg/handle/10635/20405
Appears in Collections:Master's Theses (Open)

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