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Discourses on the real in performance practice and theory, 1990–2010
Author: Liz Tomlin

This book examines how new performance practices from the 1990s to the present day have been driven by questions of the real and the ensuing political implications of the concept's rapidly disintegrating authority. The first part of the book addresses the existing poststructuralist narrative of radicalism that currently dominates contemporary performance theory, and seeks to deconstruct its conclusions. It first traces the artistic and philosophical developments that laid the ground for the sustained twentieth-century interrogations of theatrical representations of the real. It examines the emergence of the discursive act which aligned the narrative of radicalism exclusively with such interrogations. The book also examines how key strands of Derrida's poststructuralist critique have been applied to performance practice to strengthen the ideological binary opposition between 'dramatic' representations of the real and 'postdramatic' deconstructions of representational practice. The second part of the book embarks on an ideological examination of a wide spectrum of performance models that share an engagement with the problematics of representation and the real. It directs this investigation specifically towards an analysis of the representations of 'real' people in performances which adopt verbatim methodologies drawn from the documentary theatre tradition. The book continues to explore performance environments that break down the dichotomy of performer/spectator and seeks to replace mediated representations with experiential realities.

Verbatim practice in a sceptical age
Liz Tomlin

has apparently been seen as an inadequate response to the current global situation’ (2006: 57). The ongoing suspicion of dramatic representation, outlined in detail in Chapters 1 and 2 of this book, might further explain the shift away from the ‘state of the nation’ dramatic texts of the 1970s and 1980s and the rising popularity of verbatim strategies as used to address more recent political events. In The Problem of Speaking for Others, Linda Alcoff suggests that there has indeed been a ‘crisis of representation’ that has, in the wake of poststructuralist, feminist

in Acts and apparitions
Gwilym Jones

chapter, I will argue that the possibilities and the connotations of the theatrical storm are repeatedly investigated during the play and that this process is part of The Tempest ’s wider concern with the dramatic representation of nature. Although the ecocritical will become more explicit in the latter part of this chapter, however, it is always at stake in this reading, not least in the following

in Shakespeare’s storms
Felicity Dunworth

perspectives and inviting an audience to reconsider history and its meaning for the present. In her argument that Shakespeare’s history plays display a politically risky perspectivism, Paola Pugliatti suggests that the creation of invented characters (or characters ‘invented’ in the sense that their dramatic representation bears little relation to their description in the source material) enabled Shakespeare to create narrative flexibility and

in Mothers and meaning on the early modern English stage
Abstract only
Liz Tomlin

conclusions, but on a self-reflexivity that can serve to always and already destabilise its own manifestations of authority, wherever these might lie. If the initial performed responses to the deconstructive project foregrounded a critique of dramatic representation through citational performance strategies, emphasis on the real time and space of the performance event, and a shift from spectator to participant, it is imperative, by the project’s own premises, for these conclusions to be subjected, by the next wave of work, to the same ‘shaking’ process they themselves

in Acts and apparitions
Jonathan Bignell and Stephen Lacey

Billingham terms its ‘geo-ideological’ meanings as a place of licensed pleasures, the programme established patterns of relationships between characters that concretised and mediated questions of assimilation of gay identity and the tensions and contradictions around sexuality as a conduit for identity-formation. Place, personhood, class and wealth were each represented as material circumstances that bear on the dramatic representation of gay identity. At various points in his essay, Billingham draws attention to the ways in which the status of the drama as a ‘quality

in Popular television drama
Michael McKeon

) is given in prose; discourse within the dramatic representation that is being performed (that of the players playing their roles) is given in heroic couplets. Because of the nature of the action – a dialogue between rehearsers and rehearsed, form and content, the ‘how’ and the ‘what’ of the play – the threshold between two distinct dimensions of speech is continually crossed and re-crossed. In effect Buckingham creates an experience of crossing formal thresholds that has become a familiar signature of modern art. 61 part i: rethinking texts and readers What I am

in Texts and readers in the Age of Marvell
Abstract only
Liz Tomlin

binary that are the Introduction 11 subject of this book’s interrogation remain embedded in the subconscious of the global industry network that selects and markets all new work on an international basis, and in the minds of the newspaper critics of new performance who are instrumental in highlighting work for the industry’s attention. It is my contention that, despite a renewed interest in text-based work, this market continues to be too often informed by mythologised and misapplied approximations of an ideological critique of dramatic representation that is now

in Acts and apparitions
Open Access (free)
Eric Pudney

Introduction Witchcraft is often thought of, wrongly, as a thing of the past. In fact, it continues to be taken seriously by people all over the world. But because the subject of this study is, specifically, early modern witchcraft and its dramatic representation, it will be necessary to clarify what the term ‘witch’ meant within this specific context. As several early modern authors on witchcraft argued, the meaning of the word has changed over time. The senses in which ancient Latin or Greek authors used the terms that are typically translated as ‘witch’ are

in Scepticism and belief in English witchcraft drama, 1538–1681
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Of 1647, theatre closure and reinvention
Rachel Willie

) the family and common- Introduction 3 weal. This feeds into traditional conceptions of May Day ­festivities, which often erupted into riots and where sexual licence was understood to be ­permissible.5 Aware of its function as a dramatic r­epresentation, Blunt carefully constructs the civil war re-enactment to prevent traditional ­holiday ­pastimes and also as a way to mirror and develop anti-cavalier iconography. However, the licence afforded to May Day festivities does not disappear. Instead, it is refashioned as a way to present an unthreatening image of war: the

in Staging the revolution