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date: 28 January 2020

Abstract and Keywords

This chapter first addresses the importance of each of the three terms in its title, all of which have taken on new importance in the past generation of scholarship. Theorizing one’s work now acknowledges that all academic work, even so-called ‘objective’ or ‘empirical’ work, is based upon certain theoretical assumptions and these will shape both procedures and conclusions. An event perspective encourages us to look beyond the playtext to its entire social context for a fuller understanding. Closely related to this is the concept of the performative, which considers what functions a theatrical event serves within its surrounding culture. The research of Joseph Roach is considered as an example of the operations of these three terms, along with other examples from recent Georgian theatre research as exemplified in the special 2001 issue of PMLA devoted to ‘Celebrity, Fame, Notoriety’.

Keywords: theory, performance, event, postpositivism, semiotics, cultural studies, celebrity

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