Larry Lynch


This thesis summarises a period of practice-led research into relationships between imting and performance. It considers ways in which performance (especially performance art) might serve as a critical and methodological lens through which to explore the practice of writing — primarily the author's own. It is located in the recentiy designated field of Performance Writing, whose interdisciplinary approach it adopts. Responding to a perceived condition of impasse (not writing) in the author's relationship to textual production, the thesis charts a process of deploying performance (and subsequentiy video) art as a research methodology, using its emphasis on temporal, spatial, material and corporeal concerns, to focus on writing as material and physical act - aspects of writing that are magnified by the experience of being a miter not imting. The thesis suggests that the experience of impasse was symptomatic of difficulties reconciling the relationship between language and subjectivity, and that this difficulty originates in the author's exposure to certain theological and doctrinal practices. It acknowledges, however, that the emphasis on ritual performativity and embodiment in much Christian liturgy has shaped both his relationship .to the written word, and his performance-based approach to challenging the condition of impasse itself. The thesis is divided into two main parts: the first considers context and methodology; the second tracks the narrative of the research, from the condition of impasse to the production of poetic writing. Sub-divided into three phases {Performing (not) Writing^ Hybrid Practice and Poetry and Performance, the second part deploys differing modes: fragments of autobiographical narrative, specific theoretical discussions, examples of, and commentaries on, practical experiments, and the inclusion of practical work itself. The thesis draws on specific theoretical and philosophical perspectives that are themselves engaged with interplay between questions of writing, subjectivity and interdisciplinarity - most notably those of Jacques Derrida and Helene Cixous.

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