The Routledge Companion to Theatre and Politics is a volume of critical essays, provocations, and interventions on the most important questions faced by today's writers, critics, audiences, and theatre and performance makers. Featuring texts written by scholars and artists who are diversely situated (geographically, culturally, politically, and institutionally), its multiple perspectives broadly address the question How can we be political now?
To respond to this question, Peter Eckersall and Helena Grehan have created eight galvanising themes as frameworks or rubrics to rethink the critical, creative, and activist perspectives on questions of politics and theatre. Each theme is linked to a set of guiding keywords:
Post (post consensus, post-Brexit, post-Fukushima, post-neoliberalism, post-humanism, post-global financial crisis, post-acting, the real) Assembly (assemblage, disappearance, permission, community, citizen, protest, refugee) Gap (who is in and out, what can be seen/heard/funded/allowed) Institution (visibility/darkness, inclusion, rules) Machine (biodata, surveillance economy, mediatisation) Message (performance and conviction, didacticism, propaganda) End (suffering, stasis, collapse, entropy) Re. (reset, rescale, reanimate, reimagine, replay: how to bring complexity back into the public arena, how art can help to do this).
These themes were developed in conversation with key thinkers and artists in the field, and the resulting texts engage with artistic works across a range of modes including traditional theatre, contemporary performance, public protest events, activism, and community and participatory theatre.
Suitable for academics, performance makers, and students, The Routledge Companion to Theatre and Politics explores questions of how to be political in the early 21st century, by exploring how theatre and performance might provoke, unsettle, reinforce, or productively destabilise the status quo.
, Helena Grehan
Country of Publication:
Series: Routledge Companions
Further / Higher Education
A / AS level
List of Illustrations Notes on Contributors Acknowledgements 1. A Dramaturgy of Cultural Activism Helena Grehan and Peter Eckersall PART I: POST 2. Reflections Upon the `Post': Towards a Cultural History and a Performance-Oriented Perspective Andy Lavender 3. Post-Dictatorship Chilean Theatre and the Political Imperative: Ictus' Esto (no) es un testamento Jennifer Joan Thompson 4. After the Referendum: When the Theatre Tries to do `Something' Marilena Zaroulia 5. Arab Political Theatre Post-Arab Spring Marvin Carlson 6. Queer Politics/Nostalgia: Performing the UpStairs Lounge Fire of 1973 Sean F. Edgecomb 7. Contemporary Theatre, the Contemporary, and Historicity C. J. W.-L. Wee 8. The vita perfumativa and Post-dramatic, Post-conceptual Personae Jon McKenzie 9. Post-98 Indonesian Theatre and Performance: Politics Between a war of Loudness and the Dramaturgy of a Silencer Ugoran Prasad 10. The Theatre of Posthuman Immunity Joao Florencio 11. Revolutionary Trends at the South African National Arts Festival Anton Krueger 12. The Cultural and Political Impact of Post-migrant Theatre in Germany Azadeh Sharifi 13. Staging Post-Democracy in State 1-4 by Rimini Protokoll Imanuel Schipper 14. Parsing the Post: The Post-Political and its Utility (or not) for Performance Janelle Reinelt PART II: ASSEMBLY 15. Hosts of Angels: Climate Guardians and Quiet Activism Denise Varney 16. Reflecting upon Freedom with Meiro Koizumi Shintaro Fujii 17. An Assembly of Mourning: Documentary Theatre as a Mode Alternative Historiography Kai Tuchmann 18. Assembly as Community: Politics and Performance in Late 20th- and Early 21st-Century Buenos Aires Jean Graham-Jones 19. Advocacy, Allies, and `Allies of Convenience' in Performance and Performative Protest Bree Hadley 20. From Revolution to Figuration: A Genealogy of Philippine Protest Performances Sir Anril Pineda Tiatco and Bryan Levina Viray. 21. The Politics of Care: Play, Stillness and Social Presence. Michael Balfour 22. Assembling Non-Presence in The Aborigine is Present Lara Stevens 23. 100% Tokyo (2013) by Rimini Protokoll as a Political Forum by Emancipated Performers and Audience Members Ken Hagiwara 24. Lessons in Revolting: A Postdramatic Theatre in Egypt Areeg Ibrahim 25. Obscene Public Speech Tony Fisher PART III: GAP 26. Dogwhistle Performance: Concealing White Supremacy in Right-wing Populism Shannon Steen 27. Arkadas Kalabilir miyiz?/Can we remain friends? A Reflection on the Politics of Land, Performance and Friendship OEzgul Akinci 28. The Construction of Material Referentiality in Chilean Theatre: Los que van quedando en el camino (2010) Milena Grass Kleiner 29. To Rest in the Gap: Possibilities for Another Politics through Theatre Jazmin Badong Llana 30. `You are Bernarda': Marginalised Roma Women Take on the Main Spanish Stages Mara Valderrama 31. Dancing in the Gap Rachael Swain 32. Touring San Francisco's Chinatown: Collective Memories and Peripatetic Performance Sean Metzger and Marike Splint 33. `It's Just Not Right': Performing Homelessness in Kalisolaite `Uhila's Mo'ui Tukuhausia Emma Willis 34. `Resisting Production': The Slow Politics of Theatre Mark Fleishman 35. The Speculative Collectivity of the Global Transnational, or, Social Practice and the International Division of Labour Veronica Tello 36. Acts of Collaboration and Disruption: Notes on the Asylum Ballet Uropa Solveig Gade PART IV: INSTITUTION 37. The Power of Abuse Jen Harvie 38. Institutional Aesthetics and the Crisis of Leadership Christopher Balme 39. The Politics of Teaching Theatre Glenn D'Cruz 40. Going Feral: Queerly De-Domesticating the Institution (and Running Wild) Alyson Campbell 41. Artists versus the City: The Curious Story of the Jakarta Arts Council 1968-2017 Helly Minarti 42. Festival Dramaturgy Ong Keng Sen 43. `100-Days House': Blackout as Political Action Konstantina Georgelou 44. The Performative Institution Edward Scheer 45. Punishment and Chaos David Pledger PART V: MACHINE 46. Maria Lucia Cruz Correia's Urban Action Clinic GARDEN: A Political Ecology with Diplomats of Dissensus and Composite Bodies Engaged in Intra-Action Christel Stalpaert 47. Docile Subjects: From Theatres of Automata to the Machinery of Twenty-first-century Media Evelyn Wan 48. The Human Object in Oriza Hirata's I, Worker and Sayonara Sarah Lucie 49. Clarke and Dawe's Mock Interviews and the Politics of Duration Yuji Sone 50. Exposing the Machinic Present: Rimini Protokoll's Theatre of Operations Timon Beyes 51. Performances of Exposure: Santiago Sierra's Ethical Interruptions Gabriella Calchi Novati 52. VOID Kristof van Baarle 53. Performance in the Biosphere: or, a Theatre of Things Eddie Paterson PART VI: MESSAGE 54. How does the Riot Speak? Sophie Nield 55. The Hopeless Courage of Confronting Contemporary Realities: Milo Rau's `Globally Conceived Theatre of Humanity' Peter M. Boenisch 56. Ibsen as Method: Critical Theatre for the Era of Post-Truth Politics Andrew Goldberg 57. Facing Fear: the Radical Reversal of Narratives of Risk Sigrid Merx 58. Form and Violence: Beyond Theatrical Content Eero Laine 59. The Message is Maori: The Politics of Haka in Performance Nicola Hyland 60. A Theatre of the Middle Way: Buddhism, Convictions, and Social Engagement in Burma/Myanmar Matthew Yoxall 61. Contemporary Chilean Political Theatre between Opacity and Propaganda: the Case of Colectivo Zoologico's Dark Fabian Escalona 62. Flanerie of the Mind: Beyene Haile's Asmara Play as a Dramaturgy of the Street Christine Matzke 63. Acting on Behalf of Themselves: the Theatrical Politics of Child's Play Bryoni Trezise PART VII: END 64. End and Interval Joe Kelleher 65. `Stage Managing' Ruins in Lebanon's Borderlands Ella Parry-Davies 66. Striving, Falling, Performing: Phenomenologies of Mood and Apocalypse Peta Tait 67. Plastic Animals in Praxes of Metamorphosis Eve Katsouraki 68. Against Staging Apocalyptic Disasters with Butoh Dance: Ohno Yoshito's Flower and Bird/Inside and Outside Hayato Kosuge 69. Theatre and Eschatological Politics Felipe Cevera 70. Holstein's hair: The Politics of Decadence in The Famous Lauren Barri Holstein's Splat! Adam Alston 71. Performance as Infrastructure and Institutional Unlearnings Gigi Argyropoulou 72. Radically Dead Art in the Beautiful End Times Peter Eckersall PART VIII: RE 73. A Chinese Catastrophe? The Moving Target of Political Theatre Paul Rae 74. Preserved by Permafrost: Reanimating and Reimagining Complexity in Canada's Klondike Gold Rush Phoebe Rumsey 75. The Situated Performative: Considering the Politics of the Pause in Performance Alexa Taylor 76. Between Resistance and Consensus: The Mercurial Dramaturgy of The Necessary Stage Melissa Wansin Wong 77. Open Platforms for Dialogue and Difference: Critical Leadership in Singapore Theatre Charlene Rajendran 78. Geomnemonic Performance: Activating Political Ontology through Unsettled Remains Daphna Ben-Shaul 79. Art, Politics and the Promise of Rupture: Reimagining the Manifesto in an Age of Overflow Helena Grehan 80. Re-visit/ Re-Examine/ Re-Contextualise/ Re-Ignite: Protest and Activism as Performance Sarah Ann Standing 81. Evidencing Slow Making in One-to-One Performance at the Proximity Festival Renee Newman 82. Re-Inventing a Political Theatre in Burkina Faso Heather Jeanne Denyer Index
Peter Eckersall is Professor of Theatre at the Graduate Centre, CUNY, and Honorary Fellow at the University of Melbourne. Recent publications include New Media Dramaturgy (with Edward Scheer and Helena Grehan, 2017) and The Dumb Type Reader (with Edward Scheer and Fujii Shintaro, 2017). Helena Grehan is Professor of Creative Arts at Murdoch University. She writes on performance and politics, spectatorship and ethics, and new media dramaturgy. Her most recent books are New Media Dramaturgy (with Edward Scheer and Peter Eckersall, 2017) and William Yang: Stories of Love and Death (with Edward Scheer).
This impressive companion offers deep analysis and extensive international coverage of performances, contexts, theories and geographies. The eight terms that structure it creatively disrupt conventional perceptions of politics and standard ways of thinking about theatre's impact. The length of each short essay belies both its complexity and its contribution to productive negotiations between theatre and politics. Professor Joanne Tompkins, The University of Queensland The Routledge Companion to Theatre and Politics provides crucially diverse and consistently inspiring clarion calls to action. A rich collection of interventions from across our contemporary world, The Companion offers vital examples of cultural activism that readers might engage, develop and deliver in their own acts of political performance. Professor Susan Bennett, University of Calgary