3rd Edition

Liveness Performance in a Mediatized Culture

By Philip Auslander Copyright 2023
    230 Pages
    by Routledge

    230 Pages
    by Routledge

    Liveness: Performance in a Mediatized Culture addresses what may be the single most important question facing all kinds of performance today. What is the status of live performance in a culture dominated by mass media and digital technologies?

    Since its first appearance, Philip Auslander’s groundbreaking book has helped to reconfigure a new area of study. Looking at specific instances of live performance such as theatre, music, sport, and courtroom testimony, Liveness offers penetrating insights into media culture, suggesting that media technology has encroached on live events to the point where many are hardly live at all. In this new edition, the author thoroughly updates his provocative argument to take into account the impact of the internet, and cultural, social, and legal developments. He also addresses the situation of live performance during the COVID-19 pandemic. In tackling some of the last great shibboleths surrounding the high cultural status of the live event, this classic book will continue to shape opinion and to provoke lively debate on a crucial artistic dilemma: what is live performance and what can it mean to us now?

    This extensively revised, new edition of Liveness is an essential read for all students and scholars of performance-based courses.

    1. Introduction  2. Live performance in a mediatized culture  3. Liveness and discourses of authenticity in music  4. Legally live: law, performance, memory  5. Conclusion


    Philip Auslander is a professor of performance studies and popular musicology in the School of Literature, Media, and Communication at the Georgia Institute of Technology, Atlanta, Georgia, USA.

    Praise for the Second Edition:

    "Auslander’s Liveness emerges, then, not simply as a revised and updated version of the original text, but, more remarkably, as a better, more readable book—one that will almost certainly remain foundational for future historical, critical, and theoretical elucidations of the dynamic tension between the live and the mediatized, perhaps the defining paradox of contemporary performance." —Brian Eugenio Herrera, University of New Mexico, USA

    "Almost twenty-five years since its original publication, during which digital culture and technologies have become increasingly integral to our lives and cultural practices, while the pandemic has rapidly necessitated a deeper conversation about mediatized performance, the questions Auslander asked in Liveness are still applicable to emerging forms, practices and experiences of liveness. These questions are as relevant today as ever, particularly in the current theatre landscape where mediatized performance is not only about prerecorded or live broadcast performance, but also about various modes of digital and hybrid performance that use technologies at the core of their formation, design, critical rationale, staging and audience engagement strategies." — Seda Ilter, University of London, UK, Theatre Research International, October 2022