Creating Dramaturgies in the Posthuman Predicament: The provoking case of Julian Hetzel's performance making
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This thesis explores the posthuman notion as a concept for reading, interpreting, and making contemporary dramaturgies in a world that is privileged by enormous technological advancements on the one hand, and hit by a significant number of crises on the other. The posthuman condition becomes more precisely the posthuman predicament, in which the notion of the human is questionable and the urgency for new ethics is stronger than ever. Within this context, performance making, hybridized by technological means, appears to be evolutionary and proves its efficacy in an era dominated by digital technologies. The posthuman condition is illustrated based on academic literature and examples from arts, science fiction films, and computer games. It explores how different “posthuman” opinions oscillate between elation and awe, hope and despair, expectation and fear, while the main urgency is to re-compose failed social, political, and philosophical systems. Although the posthuman turn is enormous, the research focuses specifically on the re-position of the human being within the posthuman condition. The final purpose is to create a map of posthuman beliefs that can become a useful dramaturgical tool. In order to use the map and demonstrate its results, the research analyzes a performance. In particular, the thesis focuses on Julian Hetzel, a contemporary theatre and performance maker, who is interested in creating provocative performances that can irritate, shock, and satirize not only the political and social systems but also art itself. The main performance that is examined as a case study is The Automated Sniper, in which the binary systems of composition and destruction, gaming and war, shooting and creating illustrate the posthuman predicament.