The ethics of Minnie Maddern Fiske
Vanderwoude, Marilyn S.
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Between 1868 and 1932, Minnie Maddern Fiske came to be regarded as one of the finest actresses, directors, and producers on the American stage. She is remembered for four important contributions: her long battle with the Theatrical Syndicate; her championship of the then unpopular Ibsen; her development of modern production practices and a more "realistic" acting style; and her support of American playwrights. She is also remembered for her lifelong efforts in the promotion of humanitarian causes. This study seeks to prove that the prime stimulus for her life and work was an unbending code of ethics. Mrs. Fiske was outspoken about ethics, especially as concerned the theatre. More importantly, even when they caused her continual physical and financial hardship, she lived them every day of her life. This thesis is an examination and comparison of those ethics as she espoused them in her speeches, writings, and recorded conversations, and their practice in her everyday life and professional career.