Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)


Communication Studies

Document Type



This study enacts performance analyses by combining experimental and avant-garde performance practices of artists or art movements such as John Cage, Jerzy Grotowski, Dadaism, and Eugenio Barba with the differential philosophies of Jacques Derrida and Gilles Deleuze. By focusing on the ways that performance practice informs understandings of “the ghost” and différance in Derrida’s theories, and processes of production and experimentation in Deleuze’s, this study examines performance as a process of negotiating practice and theory that continues to produce rather than disappear. To reinforce the productive capacity of performance, this study looks at three different sites and the processes at work in their development as performance products: the development of the performance The Maidens, the photography exhibit The Perfect Medium: Photography and the Occult, and Marina Abramović’s performance art series Seven Easy Pieces. Within each of these sites, the processes of experimentation at work in their creation are highlighted to focus performance practice and theory on the multiple variables at work before, during, and after the “event” of performance.



Document Availability at the Time of Submission

Release the entire work immediately for access worldwide.

Committee Chair

Tracy Stephenson Shaffer

Included in

Communication Commons