After-School Theatre Programs for At-Risk Teenagers


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About the Book

Where intervention programs such as D.A.R.E. and “Scared Straight” have failed to adequately address the problems of at-risk teenagers, inexpensive and easily-implemented after school theatre programs may offer promising new possibilities. This book suggests that low-cost, non-coercive theatre programs can demonstrably lower the incidence of youth violence, drug use, teen pregnancy, truancy, and gang membership. The author considers the problems facing today’s teenagers, discusses the history of using theatre for social change in the United States and Britain, and takes an in-depth look at three U.S. theatre programs. An appendix provides an alphabetical directory of 106 after school theatre programs in the U.S., including contact information and a brief description of each program.

About the Author(s)

Philip Zwerling, now retired to the Mendocino Coast of California, previously taught creative writing at Ursinus College and the University of Texas Rio Grande Valley. He is the author of seven books on film, theater and history.

Bibliographic Details

Philip Zwerling
Format: softcover (6 x 9)
Pages: 252
Bibliographic Info: notes, appendix, bibliography, index
Copyright Date: 2008
pISBN: 978-0-7864-3187-8
eISBN: 978-1-4766-1205-8
Imprint: McFarland

Table of Contents

Preface      1

1 A Boy Like Johnny      3

2 Why Johnny Can’t Stay in School, Off Drugs, or Out of Jail      16

3 History and Theory of Community-Based Theatre      33

4 Evolution of Community-Based Theatre in the U.S.      54

5 Augusto Boal and the Theatre of the Oppressed      69

6 The Virginia Avenue Project      91

7 City Hearts      107

8 The Isla Vista City at Peace Program      124

9 How Theatre Can Save Johnny and a Million Other Teens      139

Appendix: Selected After-School Theatre Programs      175

Chapter Notes      219

Bibliography      229

Index      241