TDM 173x. Performance Elective: Acting and Authenticity

Instructor: David Levine
Terms: Spring Term

Wednesdays, 12-2 pm | Location: Farkas 203

This is a text- and studio-based seminar that explores the realist idea of ’acting’ alongside philosophical, psychological, and scientific notions of authenticity and falsehood, presence, mimesis, identity, and empathy. What does it mean to turn into someone else? How total is the transformation? What are the implications for our understanding of the individual? Various texts, from the acting primers of Stanislavski and Strasberg to works of literary criticism, natural science, cognitive psychology, and philosophy of mind will be considered, alongside acting exercises and projects that attempt to examine what “realism” means in the 21st century. The seminar will culminate in a final project in which participants turn into each other.

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