Peter Eckersall, Performativity and Event in 1960s Japan: City, Body, Memory (Basingstoke, UK: Palgrave Macmillan, 2013)

Karen Kartomi Thomas

    Research output: Contribution to journalShort ReviewOtherpeer-review


    This book is compelling reading as it forges new pathways to thinking
    about the past through contemporary performance and mega-events that
    are filmed. The narrative is regularly peppered with fascinating detail
    about bodily acts that facilitate remediation and audience immersion
    (38–41) with Chapter Two devoted to the engaging topic of sensory
    immersion. Through performance-based detail, the author brings to
    the fore examples of ‘invisible’ history. Zero Jigen’s group performances,
    repetitious and ritualistic in nature, aimed to transform ‘consciousness
    through artistic actions rather than ideology’ (17–18). The Osaka Expo
    ’70, documented in a little-known film, Australian Colour Diary No. 26,
    Expo ’70 [1970], portrays the interplay between politics, culture and the
    arts as an example of liminal transformation that seeks to transform social
    anxiety and unrest into a ‘positivist futurist (utopian) vision’ (121). At the
    same time, the film discloses otherwise unseen experiences of physical
    pain, alienation, boredom and exhaustion via images and gestures that
    most often suggest a ‘sensorial, embodied experience of being in a grand
    production line’ (130).
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)258-261
    Number of pages4
    JournalAustralasian Drama Studies
    Issue number66
    Publication statusPublished - Apr 2015

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