Strong text / weak text
JEAN-FREDERIC CHEVALLIER & MATTHIEU MEVEL
Abstract of the essay Texte fort / texte faible
published in Registres # 14, Paris, Presses de la Sorbonne Nouvelle, 2010. pp. 42-53.
What is now the aesthetical function of a text that written to be put on stage? Maybe its main purpose is not anymore to tell a story through a dialogue between characters, nor to communicate a signification through the representation of a conflict. It is maybe to put in movement the senses of the spectator who is listening the words. Sometime this set of words through an apparently weakness in the text like the holes in Becket’s writings or the successive dots in Céline’s sentences. The function of these gaps, breaks and breaches is to manage empty spaces inside the flux of words and make easier for the spectator the possibility of entering inside the text itself. Let say it is the contemplative strategy: some text attributes are put off so the audience can take part of it. And sometimes the putting in movement works through a process of intensification: the extreme density in Hamlet-Machine by Müller or the simultaneity of paragraphs to say in Le Jardin des Plantes by Simon. Here the audience has neither time nor place to rest. The spectator is thrown ahead and constantly obliged to proceed. This one can be the pushing strategy. The difference between these two possibilities consists in the nature of the literary device: in one case it is weak, in another case it is strong. It consists also in the kind of effects the text tries to produce on the spectator: to let a place for him to enter or to push him ahead. On one side, the text includes holes and gaps and by that way favours the audience’s involvement, allowing, or even inviting the spectators to go into the words and in between them; on the other side, the text seems to be a concentration of energies that provokes a sensory agitation is the one who is listening to it. But in both cases the purpose is to anchor the audience in the present moment so from there each spectator can –and it looks as a paradox– derivate in multiple directions and manners.
Tags: text, spectator, works, one, through
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