Introductory Words

Yana Meerzon*

Dear reader,

I am happy to present the December 2019 “ESSAY SECTION” (# 20) of the journal Critical Stages/Scènes critiques. This section is dedicated to urgent issues related to theater and performance making, ways of thinking and writing about theatre and performing arts, ways of viewing and reflecting practices, pedagogies of performance and text analysis, practices of dramaturgy, interdisciplinarity, transcultural approaches and digitalization of communication practices in theatre and cultural performance, among other issues. Our aim is to offer a broader practical, aesthetic, historical and theoretical outlet to those interested in recent developments in theatre and performance across national and disciplinary boundaries. To this end, we welcome a wide range of submissions in English and/or French.

The December 2019 issue continues a conversation on theatre, migration and multilingualism that Katharina Pewny, Gunther Martens and I started in 2016, in our research project on contemporary theatre and multilingualism sponsored by the Faculty of Arts and Philosophy at Ghent University. “Migration and Multilingualism” (a special issue of the journal Modern Drama [N. 61.3; 2018]) presented the first part of the project, and the collection Dramaturgy of Migration: Staging Multilingual Encounters in Contemporary Theatre (Routledge 2019) constitutes the second. The conversation is still at its beginnings; the seven articles and dialogues that make up the current section are the further proof of the importance and richness of this field, as we continue studying dramaturgical, political, artistic, ethical and economic challenges of doing experimental work in multilingual theatre today.  

 I hope this conversation will be of significant interest for you as well; and as a new editor of this section I am looking forward to other exciting articles and proposals related to these subjects to be featured in the future editions of this section.

*Yana Meerzon is Professor at the University of Ottawa. She has published on theatre of exile and migration, cultural and interdisciplinary studies. Her books include A Path of the Character: Michael Chekhov’s Inspired Acting and Theatre Semiotics (2005) and Performing Exile – Performing Self: Drama, Theatre, Film (Palgrave 2012). She has also co-edited several book collections and special issues of journals on these topics. As of this issue of Critical Stages/Scènes critiques, Yana is the editor of the journal’s “Essay Section”.

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