Colonial Latin America 2019: Gaining Insights in Theatrical Traditions

As a Theatre major in a research-oriented program and with a plan to pursue directing, I am interested in learning not only the historical facts behind many of what we call “conquest narratives” in Latin American theatrical traditions, but the impact that colonialism has/had on the spread of Latin American cultural traditions in performance. I think that the concept of “high art” versus “low art” are informed by who the supposed winners and losers of history were. This in and of itself is important when considering the study of these performance traditions.

I will be the first to admit fault in the performing arts and arts academia in being Eurocentrically aligned. If you still don’t believe me, tell me why you probably can’t name any plays written by not only Latine people, but people of color beyond the tokens that are included in the curriculum, forced by the rise of exceptional liberalism in education? I’ll wait. My goal is to focus on historical research in addressing the misrepresentations of “low art” (sometimes lovingly called, “folk art” by well-meaning white people) and realigning the theatrical narrative to refocus on a transcultural Theatre. This, in turn, should inform creators and practitioners to create more meaningful, historically accurate content that speaks to more than just wealthy white folk.

1 thought on “Colonial Latin America 2019: Gaining Insights in Theatrical Traditions

  1. Katie Holt

    So many great potential research projects here! And I’d love to hear Dr. Noriega’s ideas for colonial-era projects for you to explore.
    On theater and performance, one place I’d start would be Dillon’s New World Drama (mostly on the Anglo-Caribbean, but an interesting Atlantic World approach). Or you can look at a regional performance tradition. Let’s talk.


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