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Performing Noncitizenship

Asylum Seekers in Australian Theatre, Film and Activism

Emma Cox

Performing Noncitizenship

The first book-length study of its kind to examine Australia’s fraught asylum politics through the lens of artistic performance.

Imprint: Anthem Press
ISBN 9781783084005
May 2015 | 202 Pages | 229 x 152mm / 9 x 6
PRICE:  £60.00  /  $99.00  Buy from Amazon.co.uk  Buy from Amazon.com

About This Book

‘A thought-provoking and timely study of Australian asylum issues. The central concept of “noncitizenship” introduces an innovative theoretical framework that inspires application beyond the book’s immediate case studies. This is an excellent and important contribution to performance and asylum scholarship.’ —Silvija Jestrovic, University of Warwick

‘A welcomed addition to the growing field of theatre studies in exile, mass migration, and activism, this book offers a telling reading of today’s Australia. It is a society and a culture shaped anew in the emerging public debate on the strategies of survival, culture and artistic output of the country’s noncitizens.’ —Yana Meerzon, University of Ottawa

‘Examining the radical political and ethical possibilities that arise when refugees in Australia perform their exclusion from the political norm, Emma Cox goes beyond accounts of exclusion to trace how refugee theatre may offer the beginnings of new political forms that question the restriction of political speech and political action to citizens.’ —Prem Kumar Rajaram, Central European University, Budapest

This exacting study examines the theatre, film and activism engaged with the representation or participation of asylum seekers and refugees in the twenty-first century. Cox shows how this work has been informed by and indeed contributed to the consolidation of ‘irregular’ noncitizenship as a cornerstone idea in contemporary Australian political and social life, to the extent that it has become impossible to imagine what Australia means without it.

Readership: This book will be of interest to scholars, students and practitioners in various strands of performing arts, cultural criticism and the convergence of art and politics.

Author Information

Emma Cox is a Lecturer in Drama and Theatre at Royal Holloway, University of London.

Table of Contents

Introduction: Framing Noncitizenship; 1. The Politics of Innocence in Theatres of Reality; 2. Domestic Comedy and Theatrical Heterotopias; 3. Territories of Contact in Documentary Film; 4. The Pain of Others: Performance, Protest and Instrumental Self-Injury; 5. Welcome to Country? Aboriginal Activism and Ontologies of Sovereignty; Conclusion: A Global Politics of Noncitizenship; Notes; Bibliography; Index