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Spectatorship that Hurts: Socìetas Raffaello Sanzio as Meta-affective Theatre of Memory

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  04 September 2012

Abstract

This article argues that the theatre of Socìetas Raffaello Sanzio constructs a meta-affective practice of spectatorship that engages with an ethics and politics of contemporary cultural memory. The promise of theatrical meta-affect can be found in the ontological surprise or rupture that enables feelings, if we understand them as the embodied archival trace of an affect, to be re-felt. In crafting an inversion of the mechanics of representation, Socìetas Raffaello Sanzio generate a particular affective dimension that remediates the function of affect as it works to empathically bind spectator subjectivities through relations of power to images of suffering others. This generates a form of spectatorship that hurts: morally, emotionally and physically.

Type
Articles
Copyright
Copyright © International Federation for Theatre Research 2012

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References

NOTES

1 Kelleher, Joe and Ridout, Nicholas, ‘Introduction: The Spectators and the Archive’, in Castellucci, Claudia, Castellucci, Romeo, Guidi, Chiara, Kelleher, Joe and Ridout, Nicholas, The Theatre of Socìetas Raffaello Sanzio (London: Routledge, 2007), pp. 122, here p. 12Google Scholar.

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27 Yates, Frances, The Art of Memory (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1974; first published 1966), p. 5Google Scholar.

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29 Ibid., p. 8. Italics in original.

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31 LaCapra, Dominic, History and Memory after Auschwitz (Ithaca: Cornell University Press, 1998), p. 47Google Scholar.

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34 Castellucci, Castellucci, Guidi, Kelleher and Ridout, The Theatre of Socìetas Raffaello Sanzio, p. 72.

35 Ibid., p. 55.

36 Grehan discusses relations between ‘pre-tragic’ theatre and Levinas's ‘pre-ontological realm’. Grehan, Performance, Ethics and Spectatorship, p. 37.

37 Ridout, Nicholas, Stage Fright, Animals and Other Theatrical Problems (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2006), p. 117CrossRefGoogle Scholar.

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41 Kelleher and Ridout, ‘Introduction’, p. 3.

42 Romeo Castellucci quoted in Ridout, ‘The Worst Sort of Places’, p. 7.

43 Socìetas Raffaello Sanzio, ‘Use of the Truth in the Sound of Scott Gibbons’, in Tragedia Endogonidia notes to the DVD, p. 77.

44 My response to this performance is documented in Bryoni Trezise, ‘History's Imprints’, RealTime, 90 (April–May 2009), available at www.realtimearts.net/article/90/9395, accessed 12 January 2012.

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46 Socìetas Raffaello Sanzio, ‘Use of the Truth in the Sound of Scott Gibbons’, p. 77.

47 Lehmann, Postdramatic Theatre, p. 166. Italics in original.

48 Ridout, ‘Make-Believe’, p. 177.

49 Sontag, Susan, Regarding the Pain of Others (London: Hamish Hamilton, 2003), pp. 36, 16Google Scholar.

50 Ibid., pp. 19, 64.

51 Scarry, Elaine, The Body in Pain: The Making and Unmaking of the World (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1985), p. 4. Italics in originalGoogle Scholar.

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54 See Taylor, Diana, The Archive and the Repertoire: Performing Cultural Memory in the Americas (Durham: Duke University Press, 2003)CrossRefGoogle Scholar; Foster, Susan Leigh, Choreographing Empathy: Kinesthesia in Performance (Oxford: Routledge, 2011)Google Scholar; and Roach, Joseph, Cities of the Dead: Circum-Atlantic Performance (New York: Columbia University Press, 1996)Google Scholar.

55 Foster, Choreographing Empathy, p. 127.

56 Seigworth, Gregory J. and Gregg, Melissa, The Affect Theory Reader (Durham: Duke University Press, 2010), p. 1Google Scholar. See also Brennan, Teresa, The Transmission of Affect (New York: Cornell University Press, 2004). Italics in originalGoogle Scholar.

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58 Ibid., p. 114.

59 Bennett, Empathic Vision, p. 22.

60 Ibid., p. 23.

61 Ibid., p. 10.

62 Ibid., p. 10. Italics in original.

63 Ahmed, Sara, The Cultural Politics of Emotion (London: Routledge, 2004), p. 30Google Scholar.

64 Ibid., p. 10.

65 Nancy, Listening, p. 9. Italics in original.

66 Sedgwick, Eve Kosofsky, Touching Feeling: Affect, Pedagogy, Performativity (Durham: Duke University Press, 2003), p. 19Google Scholar.

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69 Kotthoff, Affect and Meta-affect’, p. 153.

70 Anna Caraveli quoted in ibid., p. 150.

71 Ibid., p. 151.

72 Nancy, Listening, p. 6.

73 Ibid., p. 10.

74 ‘The proposition is that touch – every act of reaching forward – enables the creation of worlds. This production is relational. I reach out to touch you in order to invent a relation that will, in turn, invent me.’ Manning, Erin, The Politics of Touch: Sense, Movement, Sovereignty (Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press, 2007), p. xvGoogle Scholar.