Free Lunch with the Stench Wench: towards a synaesthetics of poverty and shame in Catherine Hoffmann’s performance

Kokoli, Alexandra M. (2018) Free Lunch with the Stench Wench: towards a synaesthetics of poverty and shame in Catherine Hoffmann’s performance. Hypatia: A Journal of Feminist Philosophy . ISSN 0887-5367 (Published online first)

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Abstract

Catherine Hoffmann’s Free Lunch with the Stench Wench is a performance of abjection and self-abjection through poverty with an apotropaic aspiration: to shed the shame through sharing, and to create opportunities for a common social subjectivity that refuses to be silent about the struggle of its own creation and maintenance. Despite its title, Free Lunch does not come with a free lunch for the audience but creates an olfactory situation, through the on-stage cooking of hot chocolate and the presence of a dead rat, which compliments Hoffman’s narration and stage presence into a synaesthetic portrait of poverty and its psychosocial fallout. Drawing on the psychological foundations of shame studies, sociological approaches and social-theoretical responses to austerity and social division, I propose to examine the gendered embodiment of shame and its exorcism in Hoffmann’s performance, focusing on its physical codification in and beyond the visual. I explore the potential of shame to be re-weaponised against those who originally inflict it, and consider the shame that haunts every creative act, especially those with high political stakes: the failure to make a connection, the fear of being misunderstood.

Item Type: Article
Research Areas: A. > School of Art and Design > Visual Arts > CREATE/Feminisms cluster
Item ID: 23033
Notes on copyright: This is the peer reviewed version of the following article: Kokoli, A. (2018), Free Lunch with the Stench Wench: Toward a Synaesthetics of Poverty and Shame in Catherine Hoffmann's Performance. Hypatia. doi:10.1111/hypa.12399, which has been published in final form at https://doi.org/10.1111/hypa.12399. This article may be used for non-commercial purposes in accordance with Wiley Terms and Conditions for Self-Archiving.
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Depositing User: Alexandra Kokoli
Date Deposited: 27 Nov 2017 15:17
Last Modified: 24 Jan 2018 12:18
URI: http://eprints.mdx.ac.uk/id/eprint/23033

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