Elena Garcia-Martin deposited “Gender, Race and Interculturalism in TNT-El Vacie’s Romani Fuenteovejuna.” in the group Interdisciplinary Approaches to Culture and Society on MLA Commons 6 years ago
This paper addresses the performance of Lope de Vega’s Fuenteovejuna undertaken by TNT-El Vacie (Territorio de Nuevos Tiempos), a theater company from Seville, Spain. I Consider how Antonio Álamo’s adaptation, Pepa Gamboa’s direction, and the staging of El Vacie, a company comprised exclusively of non-professional Roma women, constitutes a site of resistance as well as a performance of gender, race, and place. From this vantage point, I wrestle with issues of agency, dialogism and intercultural communication in order to make sense of ontological as well as hermeneutic aspects of the performance text: deletions and additions; orality and authority; acting and embodying.
Furthermore, the fact that El Vacie is also the name of the impoverished settlement where the women reside, within a mere 200 yards of the theatre where the play is performed, enriches the text and further complicates their reading of Fuenteovejuna by adding levels of referentiality and indexicality that redefine boundaries, and processes of exclusion and inclusion. While this is not the first collaboration between TNT and El Vacie—it was preceded by the successful and awarded 2009 staging of La Casa de Bernarda Alba —I consider this performance a particularly important contribution to the construction of a historicized cultural politics of identity that makes the Romani community visible by positioning the women of El Vacie center stage as participants, creators, and interpreters of the national cultural patrimony. Through this cultural intervention, certain spaces and markers of the Roma community acquire visibility as they get inserted into a national historical discourse from which they previously had been historically excluded.