Acting Up: Gender and Theatre in India, 1979 Onwards – Edited by: A. Mangai
Book: Acting Up: Gender and Theatre in India, 1979 Onwards
Edited by: A. Mangai
Published by: LeftWord Books, 2015
The volume attempts to straddle the strong theoretical and performative underpinnings of theatre and gender. The book is an analysis of the interaction and interplay of the two as emerging from the works of women theatre practitioners in India (1979 to 2000s). The book considers two points of intersection between theatre and gender- the body and the narrative. The intent of the book is to emphasize the dynamic relationship between gender activism and theatre. The author emphasises the individual importance of both the fields in contributing towards each other and opposes considering one as a mere appendage to the other.
“It is concerned with issues of representation, in other words with bodies on stage, and the ways in which they relate to, reflect, subvert and remake social bodies. It is equally concerned with the stories that unfold as these bodies inhabit and make the performance space their own: the many attempts at meaning-making, including re-reading old stories and texts, working with startling new scripts, responding to the present by taking over its tales and refashioning them. Finally it is concerned with the conditions that shape these processes: feminist political energies, political concerns that continue to haunt us, including caste, ethnicity and faith, the idea and practices of nationalism.” (pg 14)
This book, by placing the theatre work within the purview of feminist politics and gender studies, and by making these areas more inclusive of the women’s theatre in contemporary India, questions ‘the relationship between aesthetics and politics, form and content, performance and intent, and the stage and the world outside of it.’Book- Acting Up- Gender and Theatre in India, 1979 Onwards