Czech Theatre Structuralism

Research at the Department of Theatre Studies is focused especially on the theory of theatre. This does not include only the theory but also the history of (especially Czech) thinking about theatre. We have projects in this field (e.g. in Otakar Zich´s works, Prague Linguistic Circle...), which we can be proud of even in the international context. Enterprises like these deserve continuous care, research and promotion.

At the same time our research follows the work of one of the most eminent theatre theoreticians Ivo Osolsobě (1928-2012), who was one of the distinguished teachers at our department.

Research Focus and Methods

Research focuses on the development of theoretical concepts applied to contemporary theatre, especially when analysing performance, and on the other hand on historical aspect of theatre theories. At present the core of research is Otakar Zich´s work; recently we have finished the project aimed at Czech “theatre structuralism”. Partial topics of research can go back to the beginning of the 19th century and also to the present day.

Involvement in international research

Research has its international overlap in the series of conferences with the participation of Patrice Pavis, Marco de Marinis, Manfred Pfister, Fernando de Toro and others. The most regular collaborators include Veronika Ambros, Herta Schmid and Yana Meerzon. The majority of publications are also aimed at international context – especially  Theatre Theory Reader: Prague School Writings (Karolinum 2017)


Results of the research up to now have been presented in special issues of the Theatralia journal (Průhledy do české teorie divadla 2010/2, Prague semiotic stage revisited 2012/2, Prague semiotic stage revisited II 2014/2)

The most substantial work of our research is the Theatre Theory Reader: Prague School Writings (Karolinum 2017) and we are preparing an English version of Zich´s Aesthetics of Dramatic Art.


Research has been supported by the grant “Czech Theatre Structuralism: Context and Potential” (2011-2015) a now the follow-up project “Theatre as a Synthesis of the Arts: Otakar Zich in the Context of Modern Science and the Current Potential of His Concepts“ (2016-2018) is being implemented.

Follow-up Courses

Divadelní myšlení PLK a jeho pokračovatelé

Osobnosti české teatrologie

Jiří Veltruský a sémiotika divadla 

Počátky českého myšlení o divadle mezi estetikou a divadelní vědou 

Research in Progress - Students

Dita Lánská: Otakar Hostinský a Otakar Zich – vývojové souvislosti počátků české divadelní vědy (Otakar Hostinský and Otakar Zich – development connections at the beginnings of Czech theatre science, athesis)


In the Past

Prague Semiotics Stage Revisited I – took place in May 2011, with the follow-up Prague Semiotics Stage Revisited II in May 2013.

In the Future

We are preparing a conference about the theory of theatre, especially about theatre structuralism and Otakar Zich´s thinking in June 2018.

Contact us

doc. MgA. David Drozd, Ph.D.


Other areas of research

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