Unique: 1. Of which there is only one; one and no other; single, sole, solitary.
2. a. That is or forms the only one of its kind; having no like or equal; standing alone in comparison with others, freq. by reason of superior excellence; unequalled, unparalleled, unrivalled. (Oxford English Dictionary)
I think the word "unique" is at the heart of Artaud's essay. The pursuit or something unique is a worthy pursuit, and when something unique happens, so happens art. He talks about something unique on the first page without saying the word, and in fact does not write the word unique until page 89 when he says, " That is to say: instead of continuing to rely upon texts considered definitive and sacred, it is essential to put an end to the subjugation of the theater to the text, and to recover the notion of a kind of unique language half-way between gesture and thought" (89). So what is cool about theater, and art for the matter, is the opportunity to do, or create, something unique, that no matter what will never be the same twice. That is part of Artaud's problem with poetry, that when we enjoy it we are rereading words already said, however, unless I read it wrong, I would say that poetry is cool because it can be re read, and in each rereading it is unique, because; who actually pronounces all of the words in a poem the same way every time? Live music is the same, and in theater, the same is absolutely applicable.
2 years ago