Date of Award

2012

First Advisor

Asma Abbas

Second Advisor

Karen Beaumont

Abstract

Theatre is often understood as an escape, an illusion, a withdrawal from society, and my fear is that the same could be said about politics, especially in regards to my generation in America. The modes that have come to define political and theatrical activity in the 21st century are reductive in their logic and practice. What they both currently share is a disabling, desensitizing, and depressing conception of the actor in the world. As both a political actor and a partisan of theatre, I find the two deeply interdependent and integral mediums that are needful of our direct attention and re-consideration. In this thesis I argue that both the spaces of theatre and politics have the capacity to reconstitute relationships of bodies and stimulate current modes of production of life and possibility. This thesis is composed of essays and plays in the hopes of challenging rote modes of learning, and promoting sensual, temporal and spatial live stages for discourse.

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