This book offers a timely discussion about the interventions and tensions between two contested and contentious fields, performance and phenomenology, with international case studies that map an emerging 21st century terrain of critical and performance practice. Building on the foundational texts of both fields that established the performativity of perception and cognition, Performance and Phenomenology continues a tradition that considers experience to be the foundation of being and meaning. Acknowledging the history and critical polemics against phenomenological methodology and against performance as a field of study and category of artistic production, the volume provides both an introduction to core thinkers and an expansion on their ideas in a wide range of case studies. Whether addressing the use of dead animals in performance, actor training, the legal implications of thinking phenomenologically about how we walk, or the intertwining of digital and analog perception, each chapter explores a world comprised of embodied action and thought. The established and emerging scholars contributing to the volume develop insights central to the phenomenological tradition while expanding on the work of contemporary theorists and performers. In asking why performance and phenomenology belong in conversation together, the book suggests how they can transform each other in the process and what is at stake in this transformation.
Table of Contents
Introduction Maaike Bleeker, Jon Foley Sherman, and Eirini Nedelkopoulou 1. The Stage Struck Out of the World: Theatricality and Husserl’s Phenomenology of Theatre, 1905-1918 Pannill Camp 2. Movement as Lived Abstraction: The Logic of the Cut Maaike Bleeker 3. Process Phenomenologies Susan Kozel 4. The Actor’s Work on Attention, Awareness, and Active Imagination: Between Phenomenology, Cognitive Science, and Practices of Acting Phillip Zarrilli 5. Playing the Subject Card, Strategies of the Subjective Philipa Rothfield 6. Fleshing Dead Animals: Sensory Body Phenomenology in Performance Peta Tait 7. Vibrant Materials: The Agency of Things in the Context of Scenography Joslin McKinney 8. Doing Time with the Neo-Futurists Jon Foley Sherman 9. The In-common of Phenomenology: Performing KMA’s Congregation Eirini Nedelkopoulou 10. Transracial Intimacy and "Race Performativity": Recognition and Destabilizing the Nation’s Racial Contract Shirley Tate 11. Passing Period: Gender, Aggression, and the Phenomenology of Walking Gayle Salamon 12. Doing Phenomenology: The Empathetic Implications of CREW’s Head-swap Technology in ‘W’ (Double U) Sigrid Merx 13. Performance as Media Affect: The Phenomenology of Human Implication in Jordan Crandall’s Gatherings Mark B.N. Hansen
Maaike Bleeker is Professor of Theatre Studies at Utrecht University, The Netherlands.
Jon Foley Sherman is an independent scholar and an award-winning actor and deviser.
Eirini Nedelkopoulou is Lecturer in Theatre at York St John University, UK.
"An important new collection whose essays richly support the editors’ claim that ‘performance can be a privileged object of phenomenological investigation as well as a means of developing phenomenological practice.’ By placing phenomenology in dialogue with contemporary performance practices and other theoretical points of view, the essays in this collection critique its traditional assumptions and explore potential limits to its historical aspirations. Individually and together, they make a sizable contribution to our understanding of performance. Performance and Phenomenology provides a wealth of critical and experiential frameworks for understanding the relationships between subjectivity, corporeality, perception, and world." --Stanton B. Garner Jr., University of Tennessee (author of Bodied Spaces), Theatre Survey