Peer-Reviewed Journal Details
Mandatory Fields
O'Gorman, R
Performance Research
12-A-Day: Lighthousekeeping on the Irish Sea
WOS: 1 ()
Optional Fields
This essay weaves performance documentation, imagery and analysis together in a metaphoric consideration of the role of theatre and performance in the telling of stories at the marginal and sometimes dangerous edges of experiencewhere the sea is treacherous and lighthouses need keeping. From Ireland, the sea marks the physical border that must be crossed to access safe and legal reproductive rights and metaphorically evokes the state of being at sea experienced by women in pregnancy and the treacherous waters of a crisis pregnancy. Furthermore, the legal and medical crises surrounding abortion in Ireland leave women at seain a slippery unknown, a murky limbo without agency where one's life can be at risk. This essay focuses on a devised performance project, 12-A-Day, developed in 2013 in the wake of renewed efforts to change abortion laws in Ireland. The work sought refuge in the theatre as a site where the shamed and silenced experiences of women who must travel for safe legal abortions could be manifest. The performance offered a collective response to the ever urgent need for change in Irish abortion law and culture. Contextualizing this work within an understanding of the stage as a place of listening and mutability (following Helene Cixous) and alongside activist work by Women on Waves among others, the essay reflects on theatre as a site of provocation and of affective collective action where we can re-think questions of sovereignty and subjectivity and re-form possibilities for a sea-change in a culture.
Grant Details