PHRASE-"It is idiotic to reproach the masses..."-Nick Sexton

"It is idiotic to reproach the masses for having no sense of the sublime, when the sublime is confused with one or another of its formal manifestations, which are moreover always defunct manifestations. And if for example a contemporary public does not understand Oedipus Rex, I shall make bold to say that it is the fault of Oedipus Rex and not of the public" (74). 

In his essays on theater and how it must change, Artaud makes a strong point about the ways in which theater fails in today's society. In the quote above, Artaud uses Oedipus Rex to demonstrate how this work falls short when contemporarily performed. He says that the play has themes that would interest and entertain people today, however he argues that the play is presented "...in a manner and language that have lost all touch with the rude and epileptic rhythm of our time" (75). On the same note, he goes on later to say, "If the public does not frequent our literary masterpieces, it is because those masterpieces are literary, that is to say, fixed; and fixed in forms that no longer respond to the needs of the time" (75). Artaud believes that in order for theater to gain popularity again it needs to first appeal to the society of which it is entertaining. Much like Brecht, Artaud calls for theater that forces the viewer to question the relationship between art and life. 

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