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Aalst: Acts of evil, ambivalence and responsibility

Grehan, H. (2010) Aalst: Acts of evil, ambivalence and responsibility. Theatre Research International, 35 (1). pp. 4-16.

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    Based largely on transcripts and documentary footage of the trial, the play Aalst recounts the brutal killing of two children by their parents in the Belgian town of Aalst in 1999. This article explores the ways in which this performance engages spectators as witnesses in a play of seduction and estrangement during which the concepts of ethical responsibility and judgment are destabilized and radically challenged. Drawing on the work of Hannah Arendt, Zygmunt Bauman, Arne Johan Vetlesen and Emmanuel Levinas a case is made for the importance of ambivalence as a productive mode of reading and responding to Aalst.

    Publication Type: Journal Article
    Murdoch Affiliation: School of Social Sciences and Humanities
    Publisher: Cambridge University Press
    Copyright: © 2010 International Federation for Theatre Research
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