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Time, Consciousness and Writing

Peter Malekin Illuminating the Divine Darkness

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Time, Consciousness and Writing brings together a collection of critical reflections on Peter Malekin’s “model of the mind”, which he saw as a crucial yet often neglected aspect of critical theory in relation to theatre, literature and the arts. The volume begins with a selection of Peter Malekin’s own writings that lay out his critique of western culture, its overstated claims to universal competence and validity, and lays out an alternative view of consciousness that draws partly on Asian traditions and partly on underground traditions from the west. The essays that follow, commissioned for this volume, critically examine Malekin’s ideas, drawing out their implications in a variety of contexts including theatre, liturgical performance, poetry and literature. The book ends with an assessment of future prospects opened by this work.
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The theme of Medea in Portuguese literature has mainly given rise to the writing of new plays on the subject. The central episode in the Portuguese rewritings in the last two centuries is the one that takes place in Corinth, i.e., the break between Medea and Jason, on the one hand, and Medea’s killing of their children in retaliation, on the other. Besides the complex play of feelings that provides this episode with very real human emotions, gender was a key issue in determining the interest that this story elicited in a society in search of social renovation, after profound political transformations – during the transition between dictatorship and democracy which happened in 1974 – that generated instability and established a requirement to find alternative rules of social intercourse in the path towards a new Portugal.
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Normativity and Variety of Speech Actions embraces papers focused on the performative dimension of language. While all texts in the volume recognize speech primarily as a type of action, the collection is indicative of the multifaceted nature of J.L. Austin’s original reflection, which invited many varied research programmes. The problems addressed in the volume are discussed with reference to data culled from natural conversation, mediated political discourse, law, and literary language, and include normativity, e.g. types of norms operative in speech acts, speaker’s intentions and commitments, speaker-addressee coordination, but also speech actions in discursive practice, in literal and non-literal language, performance of irony, presupposition, and meaningful significant silence.

Contributors are: Brian Ball, Cristina Corredor, Anita Fetzer, Milada Hirschová, Dennis Kurzon, Marcin Matczak, Marina Sbisà, Iwona Witczak-Plisiecka, Maciej Witek, and Mateusz Włodarczyk.
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Marie Vieux Chauvet’s Theatres

Thought, Form, and Performance of Revolt

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Marie Vieux Chauvet’s Theatres: Thought, Form, and Performance of Revolt at once reflects and acts upon the praxis of theatre that inspired Marie Vieux Chauvet, while at the same time provides incisively new cultural studies readings of how form, thought, and performance of revolt undergird both her theatre and her prose. As a Haitian woman who came to worldwide fame thanks in part to Simone de Beauvoir’s support, Chauvet, like many free-minded Caribbean women of the African diaspora, was quickly banned from the public sphere. As such, for decades her work was largely ignored. Following on a renewed interest in Chauvet Studies, this interdisciplinary collection makes essential contributions to fields like Theatre Studies, Performance Studies, and Postcolonial Global South Feminisms.

Contributors are: Alessandra Benedicty-Kokken, Stéphanie Bérard, Christian Flaugh, Gabrielle Gallo, Jeremy Matthew Glick, Kaiama L. Glover, Régine Michelle Jean-Charles, Cae Joseph Massena, Nehanda Loiseau, Judith G. Miller, Lizabeth Paravisini-Gebert, Anthony Phelps, Ioana Pribiag, Charlee M. Redman, Guy Regis Jr, and Lena Taub Robles.
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At a time when universities demand immediate and quantifiable impact of researchers’ scholarship, the voice of research participants becomes tertiary behind impact factors and the volume of research produced. Moreover, what counts as research within the academy constrains practices and methods that may best articulate the phenomenon being studied. When external forces constrain methodological practices, research innovation slows and.

This book aims to address the methodological, interpretive, ethical/procedural challenges and tensions within theatre-based research with a goal of improving our field’s research practice and quality. Each chapter embraces various methodologies, research methods, positionalities and examples of mediation by inviting two or more leading researchers in their field who interrogated each other’s work and, in so doing, highlighted current debates and practices in the field of theatre-based research. Topics include: ethics, method, audience, purpose, mediation, form, aesthetics, voice, data generation, and research participants. Each chapter frames a critical dialogue between researchers that may take multiple forms, (dialogic interlude, research conversation, dramatic narrative, duologue, poetic exchange, etc.).

Drama Research Methods fills a gap in the field in that it is the first theatre-based research book to provide a rigorous critique of the research genre. Some of the field’s leading researchers will also administer self-critiques of their and their co-author’s work. They will focus on the innovative use of drama/theatre research methods in ever-widening contexts and for a broad range of purposes and outcomes both within and outside of the arts and the challenges this poses for researchers, writers and research participants.

Contributors are: Vivien Aitken, Allison Anders, George Belliveau, Selina Busby, Helen Cahill, Diane Conrad, Peter Duffy, Lynn Fels, Kelly Freebody, Kathleen Gallagher, Janinka Greenwood, Anne Harris, Brad Haseman, Christine Hatton, Brian S. Heap, Yasmine Kandil, Joe Norris, John O’Toole, Robin Pascoe, Jo Raphael, Nisha Sajnani, Richard Sallis, Joe Salvatore, Emma Selwyn, Christine Sinclair, Liselle Terret, and Peter Wright.
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Marguerite Duras

Un théâtre de voix / A Theatre of Voices

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Marguerite Duras. Un théâtre de voix / A Theatre of Voices propose une relecture originale du théâtre de Marguerite Duras dans sa dimension à la fois textuelle et scénique. Les articles ici réunis sont écrits par plusieurs des meilleurs spécialistes du théâtre français ou par des praticiens de la scène. Ils témoignent des dernières avancées de la recherche, particulièrement dans les domaines de la voix et du son. Les auteurs démontrent, par des analyses précises et approfondies d’un large éventail des pièces de Duras, que ses innovations scéniques ont eu un impact radical sur le développement de la forme théâtrale. L'ouvrage offre également la lecture d'un entretien inédit en français de Duras sur son théâtre en 1985. Ce livre est donc une ressource indispensable pour les étudiants de la littérature française, ainsi que pour les étudiants du théâtre contemporain.

Marguerite Duras. Un théâtre de voix / A Theatre of Voices presents a radical reappraisal of the plays of Marguerite Duras. The essays are written by some of the leading scholars in French theatre studies today. A number of the approaches, particularly in the areas of voice and the auditory, are at the cutting-edge of contemporary performance research. The authors demonstrate, by precise and detailed analysis of the full range of her plays, that Duras was a trailblazer, and that the startling ways in which she manipulated the languages of the stage have shaped the development of the form. The book is a therefore a vital resource for students of French literature and culture, and for students of contemporary theatre.
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Angelica Groom

The book examines the roles that rare and exotic animals played in the cultural self-fashioning and the political imaging of the Medici court during the family’s reign, first as Dukes of Florence (1532-1569) and subsequently as Grand Dukes of Tuscany (1569-1737). The book opens with an examination of global practices in zoological collecting and cultural uses of animals. The Medici’s activities as collectors of exotic species, the menageries they established and their deployment of animals in the ceremonial life of the court and in their art are examined in relation to this wider global perspective. e book seeks to nuance the myth promoted by the Medici themselves that theirs was the most successful princely serraglio in early modern Europe.
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Volume-editor Mary Noonan and Joëlle Pagès-Pindon

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Sabine Quiriconi

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Mettre en scène un texte de Marguerite Duras exige d’interroger la théâtralité d’une écriture qui remet en cause les fondements de la représentation, le jeu et jusqu’à la présence des acteurs. Il s’agit de faire entendre le processus déceptif qui exécute l’œuvre en désamorçant les conventions spectaculaires. Comment certaines des mutations les plus notables de la scène actuelle peuvent-elles répondre à un tel projet scriptural ? L’article se propose, à partir des notions de théâtre performatif, d’hybridation et de virtuel, de requestionner les potentialités scéniques de l’écriture de Marguerite Duras.

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Lib Taylor

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This chapter arises out of the creation of performances of Marguerite Duras’s Eden Cinema (L’Éden Cinéma), a play very rarely performed in English, and Savannah Bay, a text that is perhaps a little more familiar to English speaking audiences. Lib Taylor directed both as part of a research project at the University of Reading on performing Duras (Eden Cinema, 2005 and Savannah Bay, 2007). In Duras’s theatre texts, space functions simultaneously as both abstract and concrete. Its meanings are continuously renegotiated as at any point it conflates several physical locations and temporal frames while also embodying the insubstantial, and provisional figures who inhabit the space no more than partially. Stage space fluidly expands and shrinks to encompass room, house, veranda, gardens, fields, and roads and cities beyond as well as seemingly having an agency of its own in summoning up characters, stories, memories and sentiment. This chapter considers the questions raised by the later plays when their theatrical realization destabilises readings by means of material performance in physical space.