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on 24 December 2010
This is a collection of essays and interviews published in 2001. It could be useful reading if you were writing a paper on performing objects or the history of puppetry. The introduction, five pages of mostly names and dates, by John Bell, is followed by eight pages of bibliography. In the first article "Kaplin proposes a new theory of puppet theatre based on distance and ratio - where distance is the degree of separation between performer and object..." the subject is more interesting than the title might suggest. The book as a whole is an academic exploration of puppetry, which looks at mainstream and fringe performance.
Other essays cover the Bread and Puppet Theater, the Automaton Chess Player of the 18th century,Czech and Russian folk theatre in the 20's. There are interviews with Julie Taymor and the Peruvian mask-maker Gustavo Boada.
I found many of the illustrations and photographs fascinating although was disappointed that they are all in black and white.
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