The Spartacus Effect: acting as political action in contemporary theatre
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- 16:15 to 16:15
Research seminar: The Spartacus Effect: acting as political action in contemporary theatre. -Tom Maguire, Ulster University.
While it is a commonplace assertion that much political performance has a function to give voice to the voiceless, this paper proposes a revision to any sense of the role of the performer as a passive conduit of someone else’s perspective, a form of political ventriloquism. This proposal is supported by an examination of two internationally celebrated political performances performances,Eve Ensler's The Vagina Monologues and Tectonic Theatre Company's ethnodrama The Laramie Project. Here, the commitment to perform is an assertion of political agency, an act of affiliation, that expresses solidarity and personal commitment, often in the face of censorship and, occasionally violent, repression.