Re-Inventing Memory And Reforming Performances: A Genealogy Of Panic Theatre In Zimbabwe
Wrolson, Joy Leigh
University of Kansas
Theatre & Film
This item is protected by copyright and unless otherwise specified the copyright of this thesis/dissertation is held by the author.
MetadataShow full item record
This dissertation examines the emerging aesthetics of panic theatre and shows how it uses memory and nostalgia to communicate with its hoped-for-but-often-absent audience. Using a theoretical approach that is informed by Maurice Vambe, Joseph Roach, and Marvin Carlson and their work regarding memory and performance, the dissertation examines how theatre artists use their memories or experiences of Theatre for Development (TfD), the pungwe or bira, to create a means to entertain and communicate with their prospective audiences during Zimbabwe's current crisis that surfaced around a constitutional crisis and land reform in the late 1990s and is yet to be resolved (in 2009). Panic theatre, I argue, emerged out of Zimbabwe's multivalent crises. As such, it uses these older forms of performance to raise a clarion call for help. Panic theatre uses reformative performance forms and their hidden texts to call for help and change using memories of these past performances. Memories of these forms and their role in policing and reforming abuses of authority give agency to theatre groups to do the same. Theatre groups can use the nhimbe and bira and other forms to mock those in authority and shame them and hopefully reform them. This dissertation is based off of field research funded by Fulbright-Hays Dissertation Fellowship and conducted from October 2004-2005.
- Dissertations 
- School of the Arts Dissertations and Theses 
Items in KU ScholarWorks are protected by copyright, with all rights reserved, unless otherwise indicated.
We want to hear from you! Please share your stories about how Open Access to this item benefits YOU.