Theatricality and the Political Public Sphere
Samuel Weber observes in Theatricality as Medium that “of all the ‘arts,’ theater most resembles politics insofar as traditionally it has been understood to involve the assemblage of people in a shared space.” It is obvious that theatricality is perpetually mobilized by its practitioners, sometimes self-consciously, to advocate for political causes and to harness political consensus, and that audiences are willing to respond in appropriately “theatrical” ways. Yet this embrace of theatricality apparently stands in tension with the ideal of political culture as a space of transparent, rational discussion and debate, which would seem to demand a suppression of theatrical means. Panelists will address how this tension is played out in various historical and political contexts.
Bettina Brandl-Risi (FU)
Patricia Ybarra (Theatre Arts and Performance Studies)
Branislav Jakovljevic (Stanford U)
Moderator: Rebecca Schneider (Brown)