Abstract

The Wooster Group’s 2017 The B-Side: “Negro Folklore from Texas State Prisons,” A Record Album Interpretation has three actors reanimate a 1965 vinyl LP of prison work songs. This formally simple production embeds a series of almost imperceptible shifts between past and present, thus “interinanimating” the men on the record and the men onstage, conjuring an “abolition phonography”: a mode of sensory (dis)formation that short-circuits the racial ideologies of the senses and points towards a collective future.

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