• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

Topdog Underdog

Extracts from this document...

Introduction

Topdog/Underdog Susan Lori-Parks The Rep and Rev of Brechtian concepts Topdog/Underdog is a fated play in which all Americans instantly know the fate of the two main characters Booth and Lincoln; the emphasis becomes how Parks will go about portraying this death with African American characters. Parks' main tool is the "rest" taken from a jazz influence to portray a structure in which African Americans struggle against an inaudible force of oppression. This rest found every couple of lines never lets the characters gain any momentum going. Ironically, although their forward progress is broken up by this rest, they never truly get a rest from day to day struggles. ...read more.

Middle

Furthermore these wordless images of African American life cause the audience to notice their surrounding and better their understanding of what may not be able to be said through words. The emphasis on noticing the surroundings reminds me on performance artist John Cage's 4'33" in which a full orchestra takes the stage only to be directed for four minutes and 33 seconds of silence in which the audience's reactions constitute the piece. The idea of wordless imagery also borrows straight from the great African American improvisational trumpet player Dizzy Gillespie. As notes are spewed into existence the emphasis is on the spontaneity of the event. ...read more.

Conclusion

The rhythm of Topdog/Underdog also coincides with the modern hip-hop movement in which one of the most effective tools is to "drop the beat." While listeners are startled to hear the action of the music suddenly come to a halt, there is much more emphasis on the notes and lines following. Parks uses these rests to estrange but also draw emphasis to important lines following the "rest." Hip-hop has also become a stereotype of black culture, and the hip-hop rhythm of the piece also creates an environment in which the characters cannot escape the stereotypes of the world they are living in. As long as the stereotypical beat goes on, Booth and Lincoln are bound to be dead elements of a racist history. ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our University Degree Fine Art, Design Studies, Art History, Crafts section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related University Degree Fine Art, Design Studies, Art History, Crafts essays

  1. The American Love Story through the Ages

    dog; their concern for children, assets, and other, more valuable, possessions would take precedence. In fighting over the dog, these "adults" seem nothing more than children pulling a rag doll between them, neither truly wanting it, but wanting to prove that it is theirs.

  2. What is Musical Romanticism?

    They felt the need for a drastic change in all these areas, since people were craving for more freedom to express themselves instead of having to stick to traditional rules imposed by religious and political leaders. The French Romantic writers for example were mainly concerned with the individual as well as the expression of emotions and imaginations.

  1. Better Day Coming; Blacks and inequality 1890 to 2000.

    on this matter led to adoption of this procedure in other states in the south. Fairclough also draws reference to the attempts at a populist movement based on bi raciality. The Populist argument that blacks and whites alike face the same economic problems and ought to act together, the accident

  2. The use of Kabuki Elements in a Performance of Bertolt Brehts The Caucasian Chalk ...

    Dogumaku are stage set curtains on which actual scenery is painted. Representatives of these curtains are: 1. "Namimaku" (wave curtain); 2. "Yamamaku" (mountain curtain) and 3. "Ajiromaku" (wall curtain). Many of these curtains are used to draw the attention of the audience while the stage is set for the next scene.

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work