A unity of experience: the shared rhythms of only wolves and lions

Layton, James ORCID logo ORCID: https://orcid.org/0000-0002-9695-0371 (2017) A unity of experience: the shared rhythms of only wolves and lions. PARtake: the Journal of Performance as Research, 1 (2). article 4.

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‘Only wolves and lions eat alone, you should not eat, not even a snack, on your own’ – Epicurus. These words from Epicurus began Only Wolves and Lions (July 9, 2013), a participatory performance by U.K.-based performance company, Unfinished Business, in which the audience shares a meal, a conversation, a provocation. In the act of joining others in a shared event, tensions inherent in the social structures supported by Western capitalism were explored - as natural rhythms of individual body clocks were combined in a collective rhythm. In doing this, Unfinished Business hoped to develop a sense of collective experience and community, something often absent from contemporary living; the participatory nature of Only Wolves and Lions produced the conditions for individual circadian rhythms to gradually become a collective, shared rhythm, thus forging a unity of experience. Writing from an autoethnographic perspective, I draw on Marxist philosopher Henri Lefebvre’s rhythmanalysis and continental philosopher Henri Bergson’s notion of pure duration - that “which excludes all juxtaposition, reciprocal externality and extension” - to assert that participation in Only Wolves and Lions resulted in a sense of duration distinct from the homogenous, clock-measured time that regulates economic production as an authoritarian force in our late capitalist society.

Item Type: Article
Journal / Publication Title: PARtake: the Journal of Performance as Research
Publisher: CU Scholar
Departments: Academic Departments > Institute of Arts (IOA) > Performing Arts
Additional Information: This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License. James Layton is a Lecturer in Drama at the University of Cumbria, UK.
Depositing User: Anna Lupton
Date Deposited: 26 Jun 2017 13:01
Last Modified: 12 Jan 2024 17:45
URI: https://insight.cumbria.ac.uk/id/eprint/3066


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