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Visualizing the mental city : the exploration of cultural and subjective topographies by contemporary performance artists in Johannesburg

Siegenthaler, Fiona. (2013) Visualizing the mental city : the exploration of cultural and subjective topographies by contemporary performance artists in Johannesburg. Research in African Literatures, 44 (2). pp. 163-176.

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Official URL: http://edoc.unibas.ch/dok/A6093976

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Abstract

Visibility and invisibility are fundamentally social categories that reflect and shape social acknowledgement, acceptance and interaction. The relevance of inter-visibility between urban dwellers as a mode of negotiating social tensions, racism or gender-related aggressions becomes apparent in particular situations in public space. Performance artists in Johannesburg such as Anthea Moys and Athi-Patra Ruga relate to these situations by performing well-elaborated roles in specific social and territorial settings. They bring somewhat invisible discourses, ideas, and notions of normativity into social visibility. Johannesburg is a city marked by enormous political and social shifts, accompanied by a strong persistence of normative ideas partly deriving from the former segregationist politics during apartheid. In rendering these mental topographies visible through their artistic practice, the performance artists offer moments of renegotiation on diverse levels of social (in)visibility and unlock spaces for potentially new modes of perception and public agency.
Faculties and Departments:04 Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences > Departement Gesellschaftswissenschaften > Fachbereich Ethnologie > Visuelle und politische Ethnologie (Förster)
UniBasel Contributors:Siegenthaler, Fiona
Item Type:Article, refereed
Article Subtype:Research Article
Bibsysno:Link to catalogue
Publisher:Indiana University Press
ISSN:0034-5210
Note:Publication type according to Uni Basel Research Database: Journal article -- The final publication is available at Indiana University Press, see DOI link.
Language:English
Identification Number:
Last Modified:24 Nov 2016 14:30
Deposited On:21 Jun 2013 12:27

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