Performance, Identity, and the Neo-Political Subject: 1st Edition (Hardback) book cover

Performance, Identity, and the Neo-Political Subject

1st Edition

Edited by Fintan Walsh, Matthew Causey


274 pages | 14 B/W Illus.

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pub: 2013-04-05
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This book stages a timely discussion about the centrality of identity politics to theatre and performance studies. It acknowledges the important close relationship between the discourses and practices historically while maintaining that theatre and performance can enlighten ways of being with others that are not limited by conventional identitarian languages. The essays engage contemporary theatre and performance practices that pose challenging questions about identity, as well as subjectivity, relationality, and the politics of aesthetics, responding to neo-liberal constructions and exploitations of identity by seeking to discern, describe, or imagine a new political subject. Chapters by leading international scholars look to visual arts practice, digital culture, music, public events, experimental theatre, and performance to investigate questions about representation, metaphysics, and politics. The collections seeks to foreground shared, universalist connections that unite rather than divide, visiting metaphysical questions of being and becoming, and the possibilities of producing alternate realities and relationalities. The book asks what is at stake in thinking about a subject, a time, a place, and a performing arts practice that would come ‘after’ identity, and explores how theatre and performance pose and interrogate these questions.


"Imparting momentum to the dialogue between theory and practice, the volume triangulates performance, subject, and neoliberalism to repoliticize the reliance on ‘identity politics’ in theatre and performance studies…Performance, Identity, and the Neo-Political Subject scrutinizes an interpretive crisis in theatre and performance studies, and provides a remarkable rethinking of the modalities of subjection engaged by performance." --Hana Worthen, Barnard College, Contemporary Theatre Review

Table of Contents

Introduction: Performance, Identity, and the Neo-Political Subject Matthew Causey and Fintan Walsh Part I: Positioning the Neo-Political Subject 1. Bloody Thought Herb Blau 2. ID/entity: the Subject’s Own Taking Place Matthew Causey and Gabriella Calchi Novati Part II: A/Semiotic Directions 3. The Theatre of Thought Patricia MacCormack 4. Performance, the Field Body, and Zombies in Societies of Entrainment David Fancy 5. The Fugitive Theatre of Romeo Castellucci: Intermedial Refractions and Fractalactic Occurrences Bryan Reynolds and Adam Bryx 6. The Post-subjective Body, Or Deleuze and Guattari Meet Romeo Castellucci Audronė Žukauskaitė Part III: Collaborative Practice, Collective Action 7. A Diluted Manifesto Lin Hixson, Matthew Goulish, and Laura Cull 8. Being Janez Janša’ Maaike Bleeker 9. The Bone’s Pirouette: Dance, Identity and Energy Petra Kuppers 10. Dance and the Event: John Jasperse’s Giant Empty and the Disclosure of Being as Time Nigel Stewart Part IV: Performing Along and Outside the Borders of Identity 11. Temporary Legitimacy: Queer Possibilities in Digital Performance Stephen Greer 12. Affective Presents/Effective Presence: Intensity, Futurity, and the Theatrical Politics of the Child Joshua Abrahams 13. The Matter of Queer Politics and Ethics: Antony Hegarty and The Crying Light Fintan Walsh 14. Reflective Viewing: ORLAN’s Hybridized Harlequin, Banksy, Bacon, and the Animal-Human Divide Jennifer Parker-Starbuck 15. Palestine and Political Invention Maurya Wickstrom

About the Editors

Matthew Causey is Associate Professor in the School of Drama, Film and Music at Trinity College Dublin, Ireland

Fintan Walsh is Lecturer in Theatre and Performance Studies at Birkbeck, University of London, UK

About the Series

Routledge Advances in Theatre & Performance Studies

This series is our home for cutting-edge, upper-level scholarly studies and edited collections. Considering theatre and performance alongside topics such as religion, politics, gender, race, ecology, and the avant-garde, titles are characterized by dynamic interventions into established subjects and innovative studies on emerging topics.

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Subject Categories

BISAC Subject Codes/Headings:
PERFORMING ARTS / Theater / General
SOCIAL SCIENCE / Sociology / General