Dramatic theory

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Dramatic theory (Ancient Greek: δράμα dráma „plot“, Ancient Greek: θεωρία theōría „sight, spectacle“) attempts to form theories about theatre and drama. Drama is defined as a form of art in which a written play is used as basis for a performance.[1]:63 Dramatic theory is studied as part of theatre studies.[2]

Drama creates a sensory impression in its viewers during the performance. This is the main difference from both poetry and epics, which evoke imagination in the reader.[1]:63[3]:202–203

Dramatic theory was already discussed in the Antiquities p.e. by Aristotle (Poetics) in Ancient Greek and Bharata Muni (Natyasastra) in Ancient India. Some tried to systematize existent plays based on common traits or to justify them compared to other types of plays. Others created schemes for future plays for them to accomplish political or ethical aims or simply as a guide to create good plays.

Modern dramatic theory is based on the idea that drama is a plurimedial form of art. Therefore, a drama cannot be completely comprehended from the text alone. Understanding requires the combination of the text as a substrate and the specific performance of the play. Older theories saw the performance as limited to the interpretation of the text.[1]:63–64[3]:203–204