By Mady Schutzman, Jan Cohen-Cruz

This conscientiously developed and thorough selection of theoretical engagements with Augusto Boal’s paintings is the 1st to seem ’beyond Boal’ and significantly assesses the Theatre of the Opressed (TO) stream in context. A Boal spouse seems to be on the cultural practices which tell TO and discover them inside a bigger body of cultural politics and function conception. The participants positioned TO into discussion with complexity theory – Merleau-Ponty, Emmanuel Levinas, race thought, feminist functionality paintings, Deleuze and Guattari, and liberation psychology – to call quite a few, and in doing so, the kinship among Boal’s undertaking and a number of fields of social psychology, ethics, biology, comedy, trauma reports and political technological know-how is made obvious. the guidelines generated all through A Boal spouse will: extend readers' knowing of TO as a posh, interdisciplinary, multivocal physique of philosophical discourses supply a number of lenses wherein to perform and critique TO make specific the connection among TO and different our bodies of labor. This assortment is perfect for TO practitioners and students who are looking to extend their wisdom, however it additionally offers strange readers and new scholars to the self-discipline with a very good learn source.

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Extra resources for A Boal Companion: Dialogues on Theatre and Cultural Politics

Sample text

More strongly, a community-based theatre will treat quotidian aesthetics of public life as its own grounds for stages, the vernacular of its dialogue, and the epic sources of its proximate lyricism. One thinks of Boal’s work with groups of poor children where, for example, a child’s photograph of a nail on the wall which he must rent to hang his shoe shine kit on becomes part of a poetic language for the local meaning of oppression. Such art helps make palpable the imaginative leaps required for people to live for one another when the scarcities of divisive neglect prey upon opportunity.

A challenge to the authority of the state that rests upon it. Imagine all this in its contrarian fullness, and you are beginning to imagine what political theatre is. Suspended between a critique of what is and a display of what is possible, political theatre is born of contending forces and demands that can readily bring it into crisis. Paradoxically, the very ambitions of political theatre may hasten its demise. Those who would undertake dramatic change in any medium might come to expect nothing less.

The spectators are thrust into historical agency by “taking possession of the stage” (Boal 2000: xxi). In Boal’s analysis of Aristotelian poetics, art’s political power flows from its capacity to correct what is aberrant in human behavior within the context of a particular authority. Theatre makes a spectacle of sacrifice and uses the threat of death to purge from view the will to resist. Aristotelian tragedy is coercive because the final catharsis aligns the viewer with the laws of state. “Aristotle formulated a very powerful purgative system, the objective of which is to eliminate all that is not commonly accepted, including the revolution, before it takes place.

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