Page:Rolland - People's Theater.djvu/149

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The Social Play
Rustic Drama
Legends and Tales
The Circus

What We Might Have In a People's Theater

I have thus insisted upon the historical drama because I confess to an especial fondness for it, and why should I not speak of what I know best ? Besides, it was necessary to defend not the form itself (because we have no historical plays in France) but the disrepute into which some of the Romantics have thrown it. The historical drama is only one field open to our People's Theater. Let us open the way to others.

First among these is the social drama, with which a generation of vigorous dramatists have been so busily concerned. Following in the footsteps of Ibsen, Björnson, and Hauptmann, poets of the north, Jean Jullien, Descaves, Mirbeau, Ancey, Hervieu, Brieux, François de Curel, and Émile Fabre have given sufficient proof of the vitality of this type of drama, which is of all types the most needed