Not the Other Avant-Garde: The Transnational Foundations of Avant-Garde Performance (Review)
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I will begin with an admission: I am not a scholar of the avant-garde. As a teacher of modern drama, I have a pedagogical interest in and knowledge of the topic, but I am not intimately acquainted with the nuances of recent debates. That said, I found Not the Other Avant-Garde not only eminently readable, and not only an excellent introductory survey of the transnational vicissitudes of the phenomenon we call the avant-garde, but also a theoretically smart intervention into timeworn beliefs about how we locate the avant-garde in space, time, and culture (namely, in Europe, in the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries). As it moves its readers away from this specific cultural moment and fans us out across the globe, exploring both historical and contemporary incarnations of avant-garde performance in Africa, Latin America, the Middle East, Japan, India, Black America, and elsewhere, Not the Other Avant-Garde becomes profoundly, provocatively unsettling.