Butoh’s Remediation and the Anarchic Transforming Politics of the Body in the 1960s

Authored by: Peter Eckersall

The Routledge Companion to Butoh Performance

Print publication date:  August  2018
Online publication date:  September  2018

Print ISBN: 9781138691094
eBook ISBN: 9781315536132
Adobe ISBN:


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“Human beings desire transformation” (The Play 2012, 202). The desire for transformation and the many ways one might understand this was expressed in numerous artistic and political outpourings in 1960s Japan. Following on from a rapidly transforming society in the early postwar era, one that saw the wholesale reconstruction and reinvention of urban space, and changes in community and national sentiment, the very idea of transformation was an enduring postwar narrative and a defining feature of life in the 1950s and 1960s. Although unresolved trauma and political adventurism was deeply embedded in all facets of the postwar era, transformation was measured, not by elegiac comparisons to the wartime past, but by a sense of complexity, innovation, growing consumerism, and intermedia practices that in many instances were felt as bodily experiences.

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