Jill Planche PhD, English
Dissertation: “The Larger Stages: The Becoming ‘Minor’ of South African Theatres.”
Keywords: South Africa; theatre praxis; space and place; landscape; performance studies; apartheid; cultural hegemony; socio-political environment; globalization; Deleuze.
South Africa is layered with entangled histories that have created a fragile landscape of ambiguities where fractured memories are revealed yet remain concealed. The social architecture of apartheid still persists in a legacy of hostile urban geographies and land inequity, while global capitalism and economic disparity are seen in the dramatic contrast between the developing middle class and the poverty of millions. My research project will interrogate the way in which contemporary theatre in South Africa is implicated in the country's complex cultural, economic and social realities. What role does – and might – theatre play in addressing South Africa’s socio-economic and artistic challenges, both as a barrier and a bridge to audiences? Drawing on the work of such thinkers as Gilles Deleuze and Rosi Braidotti, can we anticipate what we might describe as a ‘minor’ theatre that will tell the stories that resonate more than twenty years after the end of apartheid?