"A collection of essays that explore the role of performing animals in literature, theater, art, and other media prior to the twentieth century, and discuss recent theoretical work in animal studies, materialism, and post humanism"
Introduction: Animals and performance. (De) Facing the animals: zooësis and performance -- Animal rites: performing beyond the human -- Animal geographies: zooësis and the space of modern drama -- "Awk!": extremity, animality, and the aesthetic of awkwardness in Tennessee Williams's The Gnädiges Fraülein -- Zoo stories: "boundary work" in theater history -- Animalizing interlude: zoöpolis / Una Chaudhuri and Marina Zurkow. Becoming rhinoceros: therio-theatricality as problem and promise in western drama -- Bug bytes: insects, information, and interspecies theatricality -- The silence of the polar bears: performing (climate) change in the theater of species -- Queering the green man, reframing the garden: Marina Zurkow's Mesocosm (Northumberland UK) and the theater of species -- War horses and dead tigers: embattled animals in a theater of species -- Interspecies diplomacy in anthropocenic waters: performing an ocean oriented ontology.
"All animals have the ability to make us question the human, and its relationship to the other. This cutting-edge text addresses the implications of involving animals in performance. It demonstrates ways in which animals transform theatre's capacity to make meaning, and suggests they expose theatre's negotiations with wider ethical, social and economic questions. Ultimately, the book argues that incorporating animals into performance brings about a reassessment of the ways in which theatre is produced and received."
"Performing Animality provides theoretical and creative interventions into the presence of the animal and ideas of animality in performance. Animals have always played a part in human performance practices. Maintaining a crucial role in many communities' cultural traditions, animal-human encounters have been key in the development of performance. Similarly, performance including both living animals and/or representations of animals provides the context for encounters in which issues of power, human subjectivity and otherness are explored. Crucially, however, the inclusion of animals in performance also offers an opportunity to investigate ethical and moral assumptions about human and non-human animals. This book offers a historical and theoretical exploration of animal presence in performance by looking at the concept of animality and how it has developed in theatre and performance practices from the eighteenth century to today. Furthermore, it points to shifts in political, cultural, and ethical animal-human relations emerging within the context of animality and performance"