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Chapter Summary

Starting from two art projects (Tanja Ostojic’s o.T and Ibrahim Quraishi/Serdan Yalcin’s Mozart alla Turca) this text argues for the potential of the theater and theatricality to destabilize the binary opposition of self and other that is constitutive of what Kaja Silverman (1992, 30) terms the “dominant fiction” that is our reality. These two art projects, one taking place shortly after the other in Vienna (at that time the cultural capital of Europe) were not planned in tandem. Yet, there appear to be some uncanny points of connection. Both use a restaging of a classic work of European culture to engage with the ways in which we legitimize behavior in global space. Both deal with how culturally specific modes of looking mediate what is considered to be “self” and what is “other.” Both use staging as a means to engage with the here and now of their audience and to destabilize seemingly self-evident modes of looking. Such destabilization, this text argues, results from the ways in which theatricality undermines seemingly self-evident modes of looking by drawing attention to the point of view implied within what otherwise might pass for “just looking” at what is simply “there to be seen.”



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