Contagious Theaters from Modernism to the Digital Age
CollectionKnowledge Unlatched (KU)
This volume proposes the viral as a means of understanding socially engaged and transmedial performance practices since the mid-20th century. It rethinks the Living Theatre’s Artaudian revolution via the lens of affect theory, brings attention to General Idea’s media-savvy performances of the 70s, explores Franco and Eva Mattes and Critical Art Ensemble, and surveys the dramaturgies and political stakes of global theatrical networks. Viral performance practices testify that when people gather, something spreads. Performance renders spreading visible, raises its stakes, and encodes it in theatrical form. The artists explored here rarely disseminate their ideas as directly as a marketer or movement would; rather, they undermine simplified forms of contagion while holding dialogue with the discourses that have surrounded viral culture. This work argues that the concept of the viral is historically deeper than the digital landscape suggests, and intimately linked to performance.
KeywordsPerforming Arts; Theater; History & Criticism
PublisherNorthwestern University Press
Publication date and place2018
ImprintNorthwestern University Press