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The aim of this book is to explore the definition(s) of ‘theatre’ and ‘metatheatre’ that scholars use when studying the ancient Greek world. Although in modern languages their meaning is mostly straightforward, both concepts become problematical when applied to ancient reality. In fact, ‘theatre’ as well as ‘metatheatre’ are used in many different, sometimes even contradictory, ways by modern scholars.Through a series of papers examining questions related to ancient Greek theatre and dramatic performances of various genres the use of those two terms is problematized and put into question.Must ancient Greek theatre be reduced to what was performed in proper theatre-buildings? And is everything was performed within such buildings to be considered as ‘theatre’? How does the definition of what is considered as theatre evolve from one period to the other?As for ‘metatheatre’, the discussion revolves around the interaction between reality and fiction in dramatic pieces of all genres. The various definitions of ‘metatheatre’ are also explored and explicited by the papers gathered in this volume, as well as the question of the distinction between paratheatre (understood as paratragedy/comedy) and metatheatre.Readers will be encouraged by the diversity of approaches presented in this book to re-think their own understanding and use of ‘theatre’ and ‘metatheatre’ when examining ancient Greek reality.
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