(h/t to Adam for this one)
I, of course, lay the blame for all of this on postmodernism. Fiction writers got over their fascination with postmodernism -- why can't we? That stupid postmodern emphasis on image over content has slammed us right into a dramaturgy that willfully leaves the audience behind and then resents the fact that they don't "get it." Which leads us to the question behind the questions: Is theater a populist or an elitist art form? Is it an obscure poem that no one is meant to understand? Or is it television?Like many theater artists, my answer is "neither. It's neither."Structure is not our enemy, it is the form that makes content possible; it is the meaning that holds the image and imbues it with specificity; specificity is not our enemy; intellect without heart is not more, it is less and in the theater sometimes less is just less. Contemporary playwrights don't need to toss away all that has come before us, nor could we if we even tried.
But she's blaming post-modernism for a problem that doesn't exist. Unless by "structure" she means one very specific kind of structure (which is to say, Aristotelian) I don't think the idea of structure is in jeopardy. I will say that I do occasionally read or see plays that could've used a little more structural work, but I hardly think that's a problem worthy of precious theatre-related op-ed ink in a major paper.