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Performance Philosophy

Theatricality and Performativity

Writings on Texture from Plato’s Cave to Urban Activism

Authors: Paavolainen, Teemu

  • Deploys philosophical theories and concepts to interrogate 'theatricality'
  • Explores the notions of theatricality, performativity and cognitive ecology across a wide range of examples and case studies
  • Offers a diverse collection of essays engaging with a variety of disciplines and historical contexts
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Buy this book

eBook $84.99
price for USA (gross)
  • ISBN 978-3-319-73226-8
  • Digitally watermarked, DRM-free
  • Included format: EPUB, PDF
  • ebooks can be used on all reading devices
  • Immediate eBook download after purchase
Hardcover $109.00
price for USA
  • ISBN 978-3-319-73225-1
  • Free shipping for individuals worldwide
  • Usually dispatched within 3 to 5 business days.
About this book

This book defines theatricality and performativity through metaphors of texture and weaving, drawn mainly from anthropologist Tim Ingold and philosopher Stephen C. Pepper. Tracing the two concepts’ various relations to practices of seeing and doing, but also to conflicting values of novelty and normativity, the study proceeds in a series of intertwining threads, from the theatrical to the performative: Antitheatrical (Plato, the Baroque, Michael Fried); Pro-theatrical (directors Wagner, Fuchs, Meyerhold, Brecht, and Brook); Dramatic (weaving memory in Shaffer’s Amadeus and Beckett’s Footfalls); Efficient (from modernist “machines for living in” to the “smart home”); Activist (knit graffiti, clown patrols, and the Anthropo(s)cene). An approach is developed in which ‘performativity’ names the way we tacitly weave worlds and identities, variously concealed or clarified by the step-aside tactics of ‘theatricality’.

About the authors

Teemu Paavolainen is Research Fellow in Theatre and Performance at the University of Tampere, Finland. His Theatre/Ecology/Cognition: Theorizing Performer-Object Interaction in Grotowski, Kantor, and Meyerhold was published by Palgrave Macmillan in 2012. His articles have appeared in Performance Philosophy, Theatre Symposium, Nordic Theatre Studies, and The Cognitive Humanities (2016).

Reviews

“Paavolainen suggestively traces the cultural dialectic between theatricality and performativity across a wide swath of modern culture. Reading theoretical texts from Plato to Michael Fried, the work of stage directors, the dramatic designs of Peter Shaffer and Samuel Beckett, machines for living from Le Corbusier to smart homes, and the work of a range of activist performance, Paavolainen searchingly unweaves the textures interanimating these two decisive terms of analysis, exploring the cognitive, philosophical, and social consequences enacted in the critical tension between seeing and doing, novelty and normativity. It's a striking, original book, certain to alter the ongoing encounter between theatre and performance studies.” (W. B. Worthen, Barnard College, Columbia University, USA)

“This a ‘knotty’ volume; but the ‘yarn’ it spins is new and refreshing. For a discipline that so often provides metaphors for everyday life, it offers exciting and provocative ways of envisaging the complex warp and weft of theatricality and performativity. It is an invaluable addition to an emerging literature that summons and employs sources beyond the familiars of continental theory, and reveals the very labour of creative work and its apprehension. From multiple threads of various deniers and hues, through the swift actions of an acute critical shuttle in highly original and increasingly complex Jacquard templates, Paavolainen weaves a vivid tapestry of dramaturgy.”  (Mike Pearson, Aberystwyth University, UK)


Table of contents (7 chapters)

  • Introduction: Theatrical Metaphors, Textile Philosophies

    Paavolainen, Teemu

    Pages 1-45

  • Emptiness and Excess: The Cave, the Colonnade, and the Cube

    Paavolainen, Teemu

    Pages 47-90

  • Directorial Perspectives: The Image, the Platform, the Tightrope

    Paavolainen, Teemu

    Pages 91-127

  • “Revolving It All”: Weaves of Memory in Amadeus and Footfalls

    Paavolainen, Teemu

    Pages 129-168

  • Smart Homes and Dwelling Machines: On Function, Ornament, and Cognition

    Paavolainen, Teemu

    Pages 169-209

Buy this book

eBook $84.99
price for USA (gross)
  • ISBN 978-3-319-73226-8
  • Digitally watermarked, DRM-free
  • Included format: EPUB, PDF
  • ebooks can be used on all reading devices
  • Immediate eBook download after purchase
Hardcover $109.00
price for USA
  • ISBN 978-3-319-73225-1
  • Free shipping for individuals worldwide
  • Usually dispatched within 3 to 5 business days.
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Bibliographic Information

Bibliographic Information
Book Title
Theatricality and Performativity
Book Subtitle
Writings on Texture from Plato’s Cave to Urban Activism
Authors
Series Title
Performance Philosophy
Copyright
2018
Publisher
Palgrave Macmillan
Copyright Holder
The Editor(s) (if applicable) and The Author(s)
eBook ISBN
978-3-319-73226-8
DOI
10.1007/978-3-319-73226-8
Hardcover ISBN
978-3-319-73225-1
Edition Number
1
Number of Pages
XIII, 286
Number of Illustrations and Tables
7 b/w illustrations
Topics