In the wake of the Great War, conventional formulas of theater were left bombed out, shattered, charred, and shrapnel-flecked: the continent of Europe lay about like a vast corpse. The old aristocracy, in its spastic death throes, ushered in an age of material and mechanical splendor. Popular culture was born. An atmosphere of giddy anarchy glistened in the dim light of Parisian cabarets

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