Reading and performing abjection: Staging Joyce, A professional reflection

Devlin-Glass, Frances 2015, Reading and performing abjection: Staging Joyce, A professional reflection, Australasian drama studies, vol. 67, pp. 155-175.

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Title Reading and performing abjection: Staging Joyce, A professional reflection
Author(s) Devlin-Glass, FrancesORCID iD for Devlin-Glass, Frances
Journal name Australasian drama studies
Volume number 67
Start page 155
End page 175
Total pages 21
Publisher La Trobe University
Place of publication Melbourne, VIC.
Publication date 2015-10
ISSN 0810-4123
Summary As one who has mounted theatrical Bloomsdays since 1994,' I well understand that the issue of Joyces radicalism on the subject of the body is a recurring crux for dramaturg, director and actors, not so much on moral grounds, as on the grounds of playability and sometimes taste. It is one thing to read with a startled chuckle a febrile passage which transgresses norms, or to enjoy hyperbole in context, but embodied enactment is an entirely different matter, because the limits of what Joyce was prepared to essay in fiction are so extreme, so strangely and transgressively unfamiliar, despite the passing of close to a century since publication. It is the difference between reading in private and reading a staged and necessarily embodied and visual event that is the focus of this article. What performing Joyces bodies has revealed to me is his particular, unsentimental and secular take on bodies as both comic and sublime, even sacred - concepts that are rarely yoked together. Resisting the impulse to sanitise Joyce and censor him takes one into the territory of outrageous, often non-naturalistic, comedy, but also into a paradoxical notion of the body as sacred, and the gendered body as potentially subversive, via the by-ways of theatricality, censorship and taste.
Language eng
Field of Research 190402 Creative Writing (incl Playwriting)
190404 Drama, Theatre and Performance Studies
200599 Literary Studies not elsewhere classified
Socio Economic Objective 970119 Expanding Knowledge through Studies of the Creative Arts and Writing
HERDC Research category C1 Refereed article in a scholarly journal
ERA Research output type C Journal article
Copyright notice ©2015, La Trobe University
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