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Document Type

Article

Abstract

Although Forum Theatre (FT) welcomes diverse perspectives to the stage, practitioners have often remarked that FT performances work best in communities that are in some way “homogeneous.” In this essay, I suggest that homogeneity is a recurrent theme in FT discussions because the structure of FT relies on consensus, and I propose that Gayatri Chakravorty Spivak’s paradigm of strategic uses of essentialism is a productive tool for understanding and evaluating moments of consensus in FT. Although Spivak eventually critiqued the term, I propose that strategic essentialism can nonetheless provide a useful model for understanding how consensus ideally operates within FT performances. Finally, I offer three provisional criteria with which to evaluate a community's readiness to inclusively reach moments of genuine consensus in FT.

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons License
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