Time Slips

E-book – $34.95

ISBN 978-0-8101-3532-1

Paper Text – $34.95

ISBN 978-0-8101-3530-7

Cloth Text – $99.95

ISBN 978-0-8101-3531-4
Publication Date
July 2017
Page Count
200 pages
Trim Size
6 x 9

Time Slips

Queer Temporalities, Contemporary Performance, and the Hole of History
Jaclyn I. Pryor

This bold book investigates how performance can transform the way people perceive trauma and memory, time and history. Pryor introduces the concept of "time slips," moments in which past, present, and future coincide, moments that challenge American narratives of racial and sexual citizenship.
Framing performance as a site of resistance, Pryor analyzes their own work and that of four other queer artists—Ann Carlson, Mary Ellen Strom, Peggy Shaw, and Lisa Kron—between 2001 and 2016. Pryor illuminates how each artist deploys performance as a tool to render history visible, trauma recognizable, and transformation possible by laying bare the histories and ongoing systems of violence woven deep into our society. Pryor also includes a case study that examines the challenges of teaching queer time and queer performance within the academy in what Pryor calls a post-9/11 “homeland” security state.
These insightful case studies recover violent or forgotten histories related to race, religion, class, gender, and sexuality, tracing concomitant histories of settler colonialism, capitalist development, and neoliberal progress—the scaffolding upon which, Pryor argues, all forms of identity-based structural violence hang. Time Slips ultimately delivers the hopeful message that, by bringing seen and unseen traumas into view, live performance may enable solutions and reveal previously unimaginable futures.
Masterfully synthesizing a wealth of research and experiences, Time Slips will interest scholars and readers in the fields of theater and performance studies, gender studies, and American studies.
About the Author

JACLYN I. PRYOR is a visiting assistant professor in the Department of English at Haverford College.

"Time Slips opens a new chapter in performance history. Paying careful attention to a range of live queer performances, Pryor narrates in gorgeous detail the temporal ruptures opened by queer performance. Rather than lead these ruptures to a moment of closure, Pryor lets it all hang out and asks their readers to also experience these large and small slips of time. The results are stunning.” —Jack Halberstam, author of In A Queer Time and Place: Transgender Bodies, Subcultural Lives and The Queer Art of Failure

"How can we perform trauma? How do we represent erasure? Time Slips explores elusive yet consequential problems of a disappearing history with great critical insight and feeling, showing us how performance functions as an indispensable site of transformation and redress." —David L. Eng, author of The Feeling of Kinship: Queer Liberalism and the Racialization of Intimacy

"Pryor writes as an artist, an intellectual, and an activist who refuses divisions between theory and practice, life and art. With breathtaking eloquence and power, Time Slips demonstrates how we see, imagine, and renew our faith in the possible." —Jill Dolan, author of Utopia in Performance:  Finding Hope at the Theatre