641230 Gender Studies: Balcony Scenes - Literary Architectures of Desire

summer semester 2018 | Last update: 29.01.2018 Place course on memo list
641230
Gender Studies: Balcony Scenes - Literary Architectures of Desire
UE 2
5
Block
annually
German

A famous etching showing the actors Barry Spranger (Romeo) and Mary Isabella Nossiter (Juliet) at a rehearsal of Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet at Covent Garden Theatre in 1759 depicts a pathos formula immortalized in Western love culture: the balcony scene. However, the mythical second scene of the second act of the star-crossed lover’s tragedy from 1597 does not mention a balcony at all, lexeme entering the English language only in 1618. Nonetheless, Shakespeare’s balcony scene is an emblem for an architecture and dramaturgy of love that appears to be naturally anchored in literary and cultural history. In this seminar, we will critically deal with and analyze the architecture of desire and affect incorporated in the balcony scene based on a diachronic corpus that goes well beyond Shakespeare. From a queer-feminist perspective, we will especially focus on poetic and sociocultural normalization processes. Analyses and theory work will be complemented with a series of performative exercises. At the end of the seminar, students will transform their analyses and reflections into small-scale individual staging concepts, which can also be performed.

The seminar firstly aims at theorizing the entanglement of architecture, media and desire in the balcony scene, primarily drawing from performance, spatial and affect studies. In a second step, we will apply these findings in exemplary analyses of literary and visual representations of balconies. For this, we will work on a transmedial as well as transnational corpus. Taking into account students’ preferences we will chose from a collection of material that not only reaches from Old Occitan to Anglophone as well as Hispano- and Italophone cultures, but also from troubadour poetry to French comedies of the siècle classique to Ramazzotti advertisements of the 00s. Students are invited to bring additional material.

This seminar is supposed to be a workshop. In the first half of the course, we will do theory work facilitated by the lecturer and animated by selected readings (to be prepared beforehand!) and face-to-face discussion. This phase will be complemented with a series of performative exercises. In the second half of the workshop, we will focus on students’ analyses and small-scale staging concepts. Students are required to give a short presentation; students are also invited to perform their concepts.

A (funded) field trip (in May/June) to the Residenztheater Munich will round out our discussion. We will go and see a mise en scène of Jean Genets „The Balcony“ and meet the dramaturg/stage director.

To complete the course, students are required to develop, individually or in groups, analyses and small-scale staging concepts, they will have to present (and perform) in the second half of the semester. At the end of the semester, presentations are to be written down in a short paper (5-7 pages). Active participation (reading, discussing, etc.) in the workshop will be part of the final assessment.

1.    Schößler, Franziska, Einführung in die Gender Studies, Berlin, Akad.-Verl., 2008.

2.    Hempfer, Klaus W., Theorien des Performativen: Sprache – Wissen – Praxis. Eine kritische Bestandsaufnahme, Bielefeld, Transcript, 2011.

3.    Fischer-Lichte, Erika, Ästhetik des Performativen, Frankfurt a.M., Suhrkamp, 2004.

4.    Dünne, Jörg; Günzel, Stefan, Raumtheorie: Grundlagentexte aus Philosophie und Kulturwissenschaften, Frankfurt a.M., Suhrkamp, 2007.

5.    Ahmed, Sara, The Promise of Happiness, Durham, Duke Univ. Press, 2010.

6.    Behrens, Christoph, „Sehen und Gesehenwerden: Leopardis balcone zwischen Goya und Manet.“, Callsen, Berit; Hettmann, Sandra; Melgar Pernías, Yolanda (Eds.), Bilder-Texte-Bewegungen: Interdisziplinäre Perspektiven auf Visualität, Würzburg, Königshausen-Neumann, 2016, p. 23-44.

7. Behrens, Christoph, „Wahr-Nehmend Lesen: Literarische Performativität und soziokulturelle Praxis“, Schlette, Magnus et al. (eds.), Anthropologie der Wahrnehmung, Heidelberg, Universitätsverlag Winter, 2017, p. 439-454.

A (funded) field trip (in May/June) to the Residenztheater Munich will round out our discussion. We will go and see a mise en scène of Jean Genets „The Balcony“ and meet the dramaturg/stage director.

27.04.2018
Group 0
Date Time Location
Fri 2018-04-27
08.30 - 20.30 40123 40123 Barrier-free
Sat 2018-04-28
08.30 - 20.30 40123 40123 Barrier-free
Fri 2018-06-22
08.30 - 20.30 40123 40123 Barrier-free
Sat 2018-06-23
08.30 - 20.30 40123 40123 Barrier-free