‘”Hearing Voices” and Performing the Mind in debbie tucker green’s Dramatic-Poetics’

Osborne, Deirdre. 2020. ‘”Hearing Voices” and Performing the Mind in debbie tucker green’s Dramatic-Poetics’. In: Siân Adiseshiah and Jacqueline Bolton, eds. debbie tucker green: Critical Perspectives. Cham, Switzerland: Palgrave Macmillan, pp. 233-255. ISBN 9783030345808 [Book Section]

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Abstract or Description

This chapter explores tucker green’s unique dramatic idiom through her distinctive play ‘text’ which produces opportunities for audiences and readers to relish the ways in which language can be sounded – as it is seen, heard and uttered. Framed by Charles Bernstein’s distinctions between orality and aurality, the chapter examines tucker green’s technique for making the mind physically (en)actable through her non-naturalistic methods for staging a character’s thoughts. dirty butterfly (2003), stoning mary (2005) and nut (2013) exemplify a noteworthy aesthetic for ‘performing the mind’ — be it as a borderless aesthesia, a sensory space shared by multiple characters’ perceptions (dirty butterfly) or as an individually, physically embodied, character in mimetic stage space (stoning mary, nut). The chapter proposes that three socio-cultural acknowledgements are requisite for examining tucker green’s creative impact. These emphasize the considerable influences of post-war Caribbean poetic heritage, the ongoing after-shock of colonization as being crucial to conceptions of contemporary British culture, and the ‘right to opacity’ (Édouard Glissant 1997) as a counter-stance to the hegemonic critical and aesthetic frameworks that are habitually applied to (and even ‘post-colonize’) black British writers and their writing.

Item Type:

Book Section

Identification Number (DOI):



dramatic-poetics, black drama, soundings, orality, aurally, dirty butterfly, stoning mary, nut

Departments, Centres and Research Units:

Theatre and Performance (TAP)


13 April 2020Published

Item ID:


Date Deposited:

13 Dec 2018 10:54

Last Modified:

22 May 2020 13:26



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