Performance and policing: jefferson pinder’s prowl

Paragraph 1: A 300-word description of the performance. Describe the segment in detail, using your own creative, poetic vocabulary to help the reader get a multi-sensory idea of what happened (what feelings did you experience? what did you notice?). What stands out to you? What moves you? What disturbs or excites you? What makes you uneasy? What are you curious about/want to know more about? Ask these questions to help you choose which details you focus your description on.

Paragraph 2: INTERPRET/ANALYZE (300 words) How might we think about this event in terms of what anthropologist Christen Smith describes as, “a political reflection on the conditions of blackness”? Use both readings (wired.com post and bell hooks’ “Oppositional Gaze”  to give you more CONTEXT and theoretical language for understanding the deeper and hidden meanings of the performance event, why it matters, and the consequences for the various groups of people involved. Draw on information provided in all resources (the video and written texts). You may also always draw on your own knowledge and experience. Apply BOTH performance theory concepts from the following list: 1.) performer/audience (viewer/viewed)2.) restored behavior Consider the following questions to aid your reflection: 

  • Who performs and who is audience? Do the roles of performer/audience switch? If so, why? Is there a script (social roles or behaviors) that the performers (and/or audience members) are expected to follow? Do the performers (and/or audience) follow the script or challenge it? How and why? 
  • Who’s viewing and who is being viewed? What mechanism or mechanisms are used for viewing?
  • How could Richard Schechner’s term restored behavior apply to this performance event? Are there embodied behaviors that characterize the “performer(s)”? what are the embodied behaviors characteristic of the “audience”? what embodied actions, behaviors, gestures, poses, or movements are restored? who is performing these restored behaviors? are the restored behaviors shared across different groups? does the restored behavior change over time or stay the same? does the restored behavior take on different meanings for different groups of people?

ASK A QUESTION & TRY TO ANSWER IT. What makes you curious or are you inspired to learn about more in-depth?

link for sources: 

https://www.democracynow.org/2018/1/16/extended_interview_christen_smith_on_how

https://www.jeffersonpinder.com/prowl

https://www.wired.com/story/how-surveillance-reinforced-racism/

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