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Nikolaus Müller-Schöll:
"Plus d'un rôle": Playing Together in Contemporary Dance, Theatre, and Performance
(p. 263 – 274)

Nikolaus Müller-Schöll

"Plus d'un rôle": Playing Together in Contemporary Dance, Theatre, and Performance

PDF, 12 pages

Connecting to Derrida’s shortest attempt at defining deconstruction – “more than one language, no more language” – this essay investigates several examples from experimental theatre that allow us to watch the disappearance of previous constructions of clearly defined roles and their concomitant ascriptions of identities. Müller-Schöll understands this as the expression of a kind of collective unconscious, a reference to the roles’ common roots in prior structures, and ultimately in a community that is constantly exposed to its own alteration. These post-mimetic procedures are contrasted to the traditions of the 18th and 19th centuries still dominating many established theatres today. Far from merely constructing correlations between deconstruction and certain performances, Müller-Schöll demonstrates the former’s involvement in the very theories and methods of artistic productions. His foregrounded interplay of theory and practice thus mirrors the self-relation of the analysed examples of scenic research.

  • art
  • politics
  • contemporary art
  • activism
  • resistance
  • community
  • social movements

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Nikolaus Müller-Schöll

is Professor for Theatre Studies and Head of the MA Programme Dramaturgie at the Institute for Theatre, Film and Media Studies, Goethe University Frankfurt/M. His research focuses on the comical as a paradigm of modern experience (17th–20th century); (re)presentation “after Auschwitz”; theatre architecture as built ideology; questions between theatre, philosophy, politics, and literature, including topics of alterity, fictionizing the political and potentiality, as well as experimental forms of contemporary theatre and performance.

Other texts by Nikolaus Müller-Schöll for DIAPHANES
Anneka Esch-van Kan (ed.), Stephan Packard (ed.), ...: Thinking – Resisting – Reading the Political

This volume contrasts a number of recently suggested concepts of the political – each of which connects to certain instances of art and literature in its discourse – with questions concerning the rigidity of those connections: How strongly do such claims to politics depend on their specific examples, what is the scope of their validity to understand art with regard to politics, and how can they help us grasp the political within other pieces of art? In each case, manners of thinking concepts of the political, the mutual resistance of such concepts and their academic treatment, and the turn towards specific readings informed by those concepts converge.

The essays collected in “Thinking Resistances. Current Perspectives on Politics, Community, and Art“ engage with political phenomena in their interrelations with arts as well as with recent theoretical and philosophical perspectives on the very meaning of politics, the political, and community.

With contributions by Armen Avanessian, Friedrich Balke, Judith Butler, Simon Critchley, Anneka Esch-van Kan, Josef Früchtl, Andreas Hetzel, Jon McKenzie, Dieter Mersch, Chantal Mouffe, Maria Muhle, Nikolaus Müller-Schöll, Stephan Packard, Wim Peeters, Jacques Rancière, Juliane Rebentisch, Gabriel Rockhill, Frank Ruda and Philipp Schulte.