Drama of Violence and Violence of Drama: Scattered Visions on Theatre in Latin America

11 November 2022, 15:30-17:00

Venue: CEDLA, Roetersstraat 33 | 1018 WB Amsterdam - 2nd Floor

Organiser: CEDLA Lecture

Speaker: Kati Röttger, University of Amsterdam

The history of theatre in Latin America is genuinely dramatic, because it is closely connected with the history of colonialism and its postcolonial traces. What we currently know as theatre and drama was violently introduced by the Spanish colonizers and played a crucial role during the so-called acculturation of the indigenous inhabitants of the region. The question of drama in Latin America must be therefore understood in the double sense of the word: as a metaphorical category to describe traumatic or conflictive events (which define the colonial and postcolonial history) as well as the categorization of the genre which prefigurates theatre performances. Both together brought forth a ‘theatre of crisis’ which up to now is labelled as a paradigmatic feature of theatre in Latin America.

In her lecture, professor of Theatre Studies Kati Röttger will delve into various examples of ‘theatre of crisis’ to demonstrate to which extend diverse playwrights and theatre groups in the 20th and 21st century have developed an idiosyncratic aesthetics of violence, subverting canonical European forms of drama and theatre to perform the ‘anatomy of violence’ (Mapa Teatro) at stake.