From the age of Aristotle to the age of AIDS, writers, thinkers, performers and activists have wresteled with what "performance" is all about. At the same moment, "performativity"--a new concept in language theory--has become a ubiquitous term in literary studies. This volume grapples with the nature of these two key terms whose traces can be found everywhere: in the theatre, in the streets, in philosophy, in questions of race and gender, and in the sentences we speak.
Andrew Parker is Professor of English and Women's and Gender Studies at Amherst College. Eve Kosofsky Sedgwick is Neuman Ivey White Professor of English at Duke University.