The End of Ends

Tadeusz Bradecki


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CB Editions
23 May 2024
ISBN: 9781909585591
266 pages

From the publisher

Translated by Tadeusz Bradecki and Kate Sinclair
‘In the great tradition of Sterne, Calvino, Kundera and Cervantes – the tradition of dancing playfully on the edge of the abyss of all knowledge – this book by the late great Polish theatre director Tadeusz Bradecki is about nothing less than everything. God, death, theatre, teleology, post-modernism, Marxism, ghosts on stage and off, two millennia of storytelling: it’s all here. In honour of the device of the play-within-a-play, it contains vivid verbal restagings. In honour of the tale-within-a-tale, it contains a whole small novel. Because of course it does. Anyone miserable at being marooned on this island of cynical banter and self-protective irony should read The End of Ends to be reminded of what it sounds like when art is taken seriously.’ – Francis Spufford

‘The author of this book is a consummate actor, director and theatre manager. He is also a dramatic writer, exceptional in his field and we can see this in his book both an original form and a ground-breaking freshness of thought. This is supported by an impressive erudition and original humour which makes it both wise and hugely enjoyable.’ – Krzysztof Zanussi

‘A delightful book on aesthetics generally as on Bradecki’s own area of expertise, the theatre … It combines the heights of critical theory with the ageless and incoherent impulse that sends us ordinary folk to theatres for solace, affirmation and enlightenment. The End of Ends is the playbook, the guide, the user’s manual on how the pilgrim soul should relate to the arts.’  – Thomas Keneally

‘Tadeusz Bradecki entertains, elucidates, and surprises at every turn. What begins as a series of witty and fiendishly astute essays exploring the roots and interconnectedness of story segues into an extraordinary example of “practice what you preach”. He brilliantly and playfully weaves into this non-fictional narrative a time-bending love story, which reflects and perfectly complements what has come before. Bravo.’ – Sarah Lotz

‘Bradecki’s whistle-stop tour through two thousand years of dramatic literature is breathtaking. But even more moving is the infectious relish with which he shares his love of his subject. The sheer joy he takes in these texts not only arouses our curiosity, it also quickens the pulse.’ – Declan Donellan

‘The End of Ends is a dazzling tour through the craft, philosophy and history of telling stories. It’s a Russian doll of wit, insight, charm, erudition and storytelling itself – and is exactly the kind of thing every creative writing student should be compelled to read.’ – Danny O’Connor