‘Scripting the Female Maya Body’ Topic of Faculty at Large Lecture

Jimmy Noriega, assistant professor of theatre and dance to speak on Feb. 19 at The College of Wooster

05 February, 2015 by John Finn

WOOSTER, Ohio, — Jimmy Noriega, assistant professor of theatre and dance at The College of Wooster, will present "Scripting the Female Maya Body: Theatre and Tourism in the Yucatán Peninsula of Mexico" at the first Faculty at Large lecture of the spring semester on Thursday, Feb. 19. The presentation, which is free and open to the public, will begin at 11 a.m. in Lean Lecture Room of Wishart Hall (303 E. University St.).

Noriega will discuss his fieldwork with Maya theatre artists in the Yucatán Peninsula of Mexico. His focus will be on the ways in which tourism and performance construct and display the image of the female Maya body. "Framed within the tourist industry, Maya individuals become objects carefully scripted for advertisement, sale, and consumption within the global market," says Noriega. "I am interested in the ways performers of the Yucatán work within and subvert these scripted notions of indigeneity as a way of disrupting the systems of power that promote a dangerous notion of what defines the 'authentic' Maya woman. My talk will examine a range of performers, which include a popular female character created and staged by a male performer; a radio and stage personality with a repertoire of public appearances that includes comedy sketches and a musical production; and the work of an all-female indigenous theatre group from Mérida."

Noriega joined the faculty at Wooster in 2011. He specializes in Latin American and Latina/o theatre and performance, as well as theatre for social change, acting, and directing. He received his B.A. from Missouri Southern State University (2005) and his M.A. and Ph.D. from Cornell University (2009, 2011). He has directed more than 30 productions in English and Spanish, including invited performances at theatres and festivals in Mexico, Ecuador, Peru, Romania, Canada, Israel, and New York City. He received the 2013 Elliott Hayes Award for Outstanding Achievement in Dramaturgy from the Literary Managers and Dramaturgs of the Americas and the 2013 ATHE/KCACTF Prize for Innovative Teaching. He is on the executive committee of the American Society for Theatre Research, chair of performance studies for the Latin American Studies Association, and conference planner for the Latina/o Focus Group of the Association for Theatre in Higher Education.

Additional information about Noriega's lecture is available by phone (330-263-2576) or e-mail.