This thesis focuses on the dialectic relationship between the dramatic and theatrical text observed from the stylistic and a multimodal stylistic viewpoints. When compared to philological and non-philological research into drama, stylistics is a relatively new discipline. However, it bears to be noted that drama has been nearly excluded from its scope during its scientific and methodological development. That is why this thesis has a two-fold aim: to describe and develop possible stylistic and methodological tools for interpreting the dramatic discourse, and use the practical portion to prove that, when it comes to studying drama as a discipline, stylistics should be positioned as a discipline which gives equal consideration to dramatic and theatrical text. The hypotheses pursued herein are that the relationship between the dramatic and theatrical text is dialectic, i.e. that there is a fluid permeation among possible communication levels and modes or sign systems considered inherent to one or the other. Consequently, such a dialectic relationship would affect the macro-stylistic and micro-stylistic characteristics of the dramatic text. It is presumed that, in the context of Croatian drama, the influence of dialectics in those two texts can be observed at the level of structural characteristics of the text, such as deletion of margins between dialogues, monologues and stage directions or exclusion of typographical marks, at the pragmatic-stylistic level in the transitions of roles or functions at the ends of the communication levels, and on the level of semiotics in the unexpected use of codes. It is obvious that drama in textual form experienced a kind of crisis in late 19th century, leading to doubts regarding the compatibility of drama and theatre, the advent of epic tendencies in drama (Pfister 1998) and, more recently, a strong influence of film (Lehmann 2004). Having this development perspective in mind, the insistence herein on a dialectic relationship between the dramatic and theatrical text may seem anachronistic, but the goal is to show that it can be contemporary if the understanding of all players involved in the creation of meaning is deepened. In principle, the thesis will be divided into a so-called theoretical or methodological portion and contextualisation in contemporary dramatic production, and an interpretation portion. The outer parts of the thesis, its very end, will contain photographs of analysed performances and appendices containing verbalised recordings of all modes appearing in these performances with the aim of facilitating the navigation of audiovisual recordings which are not publicly available, and presenting the permeation of these modes. The first chapter will focus on further discussing the theatrical and logocentric approach to drama so as to completely reject theories regarding the dominance of the dramatic text over the theatrical performance or the rule that the text needs to precede the performance, as well as to establish the idea of the dramatic as anything that follows the dramatic logic, but also that which includes singing and considering the spectator. The second part will describe the reader approach postulated in the title. It is clear that there will be no contention regarding the title phrase “dramatic text”, while the phrase “theatrical text” may seem controversial, particularly from today’s perspective, given that renowned theatrologists (Pavis 2004) consider “reading” reserved solely for the dramatic text. The thesis will show how the introduction of a semiotic perspective, followed by an idea of a theatrical text as a semiotic text, can be considered justified should any attempts at segmentation of the theatrical code to its smallest units of meaning be rejected and focus placed on Hjelsmlev’s legacy of connotative semiotics, Peirce’s triadic model of the sign, Eco’s idea of ostension (1977). The goal is to refer to the communication aspects of the theatrical text, but also to the new possibilities which would result from the inclusion of Peirce’s triadic model of the sign and the dimension of semantics into the reading of a dramatic text. The second chapter of the first part will focus on a parallel overview of the Anglo-Saxon traditions regarding stylistic research into drama and the beginnings of a multi-modal approach to analysis and Croatian scientific work in this area. It needs to be noted that the interest of both of these communities in drama has been increasing since the development of stylistics as a discipline – starting from a structuralist basis, influence of pragmatics and conversation analysis, all the way to discourse stylistics. Once conversation as an aspect of discourse became the focal point of dramatic interpretation (Burton 1980), the anglophonic approach was marked by focusing on linguistic characteristics of the text and Short’s idea of style as deviant (1989), and in the end the permeation between stylistics and discourse analysis also included the aspect of the reader, while attention was directed to the relationship between the author and the reader (Hall, Simpson 2000). The situation was almost identical in Croatian study of drama from a stylistic perspective. The thesis will therefore address the interpretation of a nuanced use of synonyms (Pranjić 1983) on the one hand, while advancement towards the pragmatic-stylistics of drama will be possible once stylemes are considered for their value (Katnić-Bakaršić 1999). The post-structuralist idea of interdiscursivity (Kovačević, Badurina 2001, Ryznar 2017) is significant for the development of stylistics as a discipline. However, it will be shown that the theatrical and dramatical text cannot be moulded into the horizontal and vertical stratification of the language field. With the aim of highlighting the communication aspects of drama, as well as to pull back from a linguistics-centred viewpoint, the thesis will turn to multimodal analysis, i.e. multimodal stylistics, including the socio-semiotic (Halliday, Kress, van Leeuwen, Nørgaard) and cognitive direction (Lakoff, Johnson, Gibbs, Gibbons). Finally, the levels of creation of meaning in the dramatic and theatrical text will be illustrated in table form and used as a basis for the interpretation portion of the thesis. Given that two directions of multimodal analysis have been established – the pragmatic and the semiotic – the somewhat lengthy third chapter will follow the parallel development of the pragmatic, semiotic, i.e. pragmatic-stylistic dramatic analyses. Based on Jakobson’s functions of language and Mukařovský’s levels of communication, pragmatics will be focused on the communication among characters in the dramatic text or on the intricacies of communication in theatre. This will in turn affect the decades-long discussions regarding the relationship between the main text and the paratext, as well as the formation of two communication levels in the dramatic text. Grice’s implicatures, Leech’s politeness principle and Brown’s and Levinson’s politeness strategies place the reader into the centre of the pragmatic-stylistic dramatic analysis, which is why the reader is considered to be the one who connects the social context with the fictional one (Culpeper, Short, Verdonk 1998) or there are attempts to specify the relationship between the author and the reader of a dramatic text (Feng, Shen 2001). The path of the development of the semiotic study is followed in the analyses of dramatic text, seen in semiotics as a marking practice. Clear influence of Peirce’s triadic model of the sign will be observed in works by Elam (1980), Fischer-Lichte (2015) and Ubersfeld (1982), while Eco’s (1976) semiotic theory of communication will be of interest since he redefined the role of the receiver of the message and the entire communication channel, where the emphasis is no longer on conveying the information from point A to point B. Moreover, the perspective of semiotics led to a turn towards the spectator, which enabled further studies into performing arts. The pragmatic-stylistic perspective is focused on the reader of the dramatic text, while the semiotic one, accompanied by verbal and non-verbal encoding, focuses on the spectator in the theatre. However, it is evident that both of them address a category outside of language, shifters, found in Ducrot’s theory of polyphony (1987), as well as in Brecht’s V-effect or distancing effect (1949). This further motivates us to ponder the possibility of introducing multi-level communication into the dramatic text, without explicitly introducing the instances of reader or spectator to complicate the situation, enabling us to finally define dialogue as the dramatic aspect of the text. Therefore, the fourth chapter will further explain shifters or deixes as a category common to both the dramatic and theatrical text, where once again it is important to note the inevitable differences between a reader in the context of a dramatic text and a spectator in the context of a theatrical text. The spectator’s role in theatre is to interpret various codes and decode them. This role is believed to be further complicated in the dramatic text due to the possible occurrence of three different communication systems, which would affect deixis in a quantitative manner. An increase in the number of shifters and a greater possibility to shift lead to the fifth chapter, focused on a more in-depth study of the narratological idea of the narrator and point of view in drama. The quest for a hidden narrator in paratextual elements, stage presentation and different subcodes of the dramatic and theatrical text had to have led to an approximation of the dramatic text to narrative forms, while more recent times saw the study of the point of view in drama (Richardson, McIntyre, Short) become influenced by film theories which did not refrain from explaining the point of view. Under the influence of Chatman (1990) and Bordwell (1985), as well as Uspenskij’s (1970) changes of point of view on a temporal-spatial, psychological, ideological and phraseological level, the thesis will present linguistic indicators of the point of view in dramatic texts as described by McIntyre (2004, 2006), Gibbons (2012), Galbraith (1995), Stockwell (2002) and Nørgaard (2019), emphasising the importance of double deixis and the possibility of shifting into different deictic fields for the interpretation portion of the thesis. The interpretation portion of the thesis will contextualise selected dramatic work in contemporary dramatic production. This will begin with the definition of this term so as to enable its distinction from other terms with close meaning, such as Croatian young drama or newer and new Croatian drama. Given that 1990 is considered as the start of contemporary dramatic production, the stylistic characteristics of contemporary drama will be presented by decades. Having in mind that dramatic production of the nineties has already found its place in various compendiums, anthologies and historical overviews, key characteristics and figures often included within the phrase “future of Croatian drama” will be specified. The interpretation portion will dedicate more space to insights of theoreticians and theatrologists who have studied post-dramatic and post-humanistic elements. Conclusions made by Lucija Ljubić (2006) regarding space in contemporary drama, Nataša Govedić (2005) regarding the origins of the contemporary tragedy, and Čale Feldman (2011) regarding the death of the actor, director and dramatist will prove to be particularly useful, especially in light of Lehmann’s conclusions regarding post-dramatic space which becomes a scenic-spatial experience. This thesis posits that stylistic interpretation must include both the dramatic and the theatrical text, which is why the first step in forming its body was focusing on contemporary dramatic production texts which have been performed. Unfortunately, theatres in Zagreb do not have, or do not archive, recordings of première performances before 2012 or 2010. This, however, could not be and was not the only criteria when selecting works. Once the existence of recordings of the selected texts was confirmed and after such recordings were obtained, they were examined before interpretation. At that point, a differentia specifica was extrapolated between the selected texts and the dialectic relationship with the performance, which will direct the (multimodal) stylistic approach to the interpretation. The four selected texts (Scenes with an Apple by Ivana Sajko, A Play About Mirjana and Those Around Her by Ivor Martinić, That Which is Missing by Tomislav Zajec and Female Workers on Hunger Strike by Goran Ferčec) are all considered to prominently use the mediating communication level displayed in various manners. The basis is the hypothesis that the purpose of its introduction in dramatic texts is not to lead to epic tendencies in the Phisterian sense, but it is rather the result of change in the elements that make up communication levels in the dramatic text. The reader does not hold his usual position; however, he is still present on the external communication level of the dramatic text, but he is not leaning back in a chair, perusing hardback copies of dramatic texts. Within the context of a visual change in the contemporary reality of society, the reader’s status has changed and he took on the properties of a spectator, i.e. the audience, on the external communication level of the theatrical text, whose purpose is to identify all modes communicating with him, primarily in the audiovisual manner. Given that, in this case, the message of the dramatic text is perceived in a visual or audio way, dramatists write texts characterised by the following: 1) Visuality – realised through the intermedial permeation and use of figures such as ecphrasis, which is used to emphasise the descriptive dimension of text 2) Lack of clarity regarding the point of view which can only be determined by viewing – realised in the metaleptic simultaneousness of the actor/character, the compression of time and space 3) Fluidity of the spatial setting – realised through the use of the abstract nowhere, through the semantics of space achieved through contact 4) Apathy of viewing – realised through the monologic apostrophizing of the theatron, through the depiction of the inner world of the character, the cathartic experience of viewing a tragedy, where the reader is perceived as a subject, but also an object since he is powerless 5) Auditive aspect – realised either in an auditive vacuum which encourages performative reading or in the indications of ritual parts of classical drama, such as the chorus, singing and dancing. The performances of the selected texts (Scenes with an Apple at the Dubrovnik Summer Festival, A Play About Mirjana and Those Around Her in the Croatian National Theatre and the &TD theatre, That Which is Missing and Female Workers on Hunger Strike at the Zagreb Youth Theatre) will be analysed in accordance with the previously mentioned interpretation conclusions, but not so as to seek the meaning behind the dramatic text because it is not seen as a script. The analysis includes two performances of A Play About Mirjana and Those Around Her because the dramatist took the role of director to present his own text in the &TD theatre in 2021, which was viewed as a good opportunity to highlight that this thesis does not address categories such as the transposition of the text to the stage, wherein it would assess the success, or lack thereof, of the performance. The entire performance will be viewed as the product of the collaboration of everyone included in the process. Therefore, this thesis aims to show which modes of production of meaning can be inspired by the dramatic text: 1) Corporeality – the actor’s body which passes through various states during the performance, from mode to medium, tactility with a purpose of achieving semantics of space 2) Spatiality – the possibilities presented by the theatre stage or auditorium space, a tendency towards smaller, more intimate, spaces so as to be closer to the spectators 3) Vocality – singing, reciting, use of pre-linguistic and post-linguistic signs. The aforementioned modes confirm the tendency of theatre towards performativity (FischerLichte 2009) and an emphasis on the fluidity of the process, accompanied by defining the main difference between theatre and other contemporary media.