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Dissertation/Thesis Abstract

Community, Confrontation, and the Subjectless Performative in Explicit Body Performance: Models of Audience Engagement
by Kaplan, Erin Rachel, Ph.D., University of Colorado at Boulder, 2020, 220; 27834145
Abstract (Summary)

This study, “Community, Confrontation, and the Subjectless Performative in Explicit Body Performance: Models of Audience Engagement,” examines the strategies used by Explicit Body Performers in their attempts to critically engage their audiences. I argue that there are three general models of engagement for these performers: a communitarian one which is exemplified in my study by Sex Workers’ Arts Shows, a confrontational one often used by performance artist, Xandra Ibarra, and a third more elusive model that I am calling the subjectless performative embodied by Young Jean Lee’s Untitled Feminist Show. Using critical feminist and queer theory, as well as my own experiences as an audience member, performance reviews, interviews with performers, and interdisciplinary theoretical works I evaluate the efficacy of these strategies based on the stated goals of the performers.

This research contributes to debates about embodied performance, offering an intervention of queer and non-binary performance into the pantheon of feminist performance theory. By positing a subjectless performative, I make the argument that Untitled Feminist Show sets an example for a rejection of the here-and-now of gender binarism positing a feminist, queer, and gender-fluid future that rewrites and reprograms our understanding of what performance can do.

Indexing (document details)
Advisor: Osnes, Beth, Steuernagel, Marcos
Commitee: Alvarado, Leticia, Misri, Deepti, Gerland, Oliver
School: University of Colorado at Boulder
Department: Theatre and Dance
School Location: United States -- Colorado
Source: DAI 81/11(E), Dissertation Abstracts International
Subjects: Theater, LGBTQ studies, Womens studies
Keywords: Feminist studies, Pegagogy, Performance studies, Queer studies, Spectatorship
Publication Number: 27834145
ISBN: 9798645451479
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