I was at the Michigan Theatre Thursday evening for the Stamps lectures for my degree, and graphic designer Jonathan Barnbrook was speaking. He began his lecture talking about Trump, and he said that at this point, there really is no satire that can be done to make light of the new president—the reality is already ridiculous enough.
I was also noticing the connection between puppets and radical thinking, protesting, and social movements, and how puppets, both processional and stationary theatre, have played this role through in disrupting the dominant discourse and giving a voice to the marginalized. And I was curious why.
This project will examine the connection between puppetry and protest, and why absurdity and drama instead of violence is so often used by the marginalized to advocate for social and political rights.
We are, again, at a point in history where social revolution could have the capacity to change America’s dominant discourse. What role could puppetry and absurdity play in this?