Monday, November 27, 2023

"Blindness and Spectatorship in Ancient and Modern Theatres"

New from Cambridge University Press: Blindness and Spectatorship in Ancient and Modern Theatres: Towards New Ways of Looking and Looking Back by Marchella Ward.

About the book, from the publisher:

The use of disability as a metaphor is ubiquitous in popular culture – nowhere more so than in the myths, stereotypes and tropes around blindness. To be 'blind' has never referred solely to the inability to see. Instead blindness has been used as shorthand for, among other things, a lack of understanding, immorality, closeness to death, special insight or second sight. Although these 'meanings' attached to blindness were established as early as antiquity, readers, receivers and spectators into the present have been implicated in the stereotypes, which persist because audiences can be relied on to perpetuate them. This book argues for a new way of seeing – and of understanding classical reception - by offering assemblage-thinking as an alternative to the presumed passivity of classical influence. And the theatre, which has been (incorrectly) assumed to be principally a visual medium, is the ideal space in which to investigate new ways of seeing.
--Marshal Zeringue