This a well-written, well-researched book. Camilla Stevens makes an indispensable contribution to the fields of Latin American theater studies, Latino studies, Caribbean studies, and transnational studies. Aquí and Allá: Transnational Dominican Theater will become indispensable to scholars in many fields.
Aquí and Allá: Transnational Dominican Theater and Performance explores how contemporary Dominican theater and performance artists portray a sense of collective belonging shaped by the transnational connections between the homeland and the diaspora. Through close readings of plays and performances produced in the Dominican Republic and the United States in dialogue with theories of theater and performance, migration theory, and literary, cultural, and historical studies, this book situates theater and performance in debates on Dominican history and culture and the impact of migration on the changing character of national identity from end of the twentieth century to the present. By addressing local audiences of island-based and diasporic Dominicans with stories of characters who are shaped by both places, the theatrical performances analyzed in this book operate as a democratizing force on conceptions of Dominican identity and challenge assumptions about citizenship and national belonging. Likewise, the artists’ bi-national perspectives and work methods challenge the paradigms that have traditionally framed Latin(o) American theater studies.
Camilla Stevens clearly demonstrates the key social role of theater and performance in the Dominican Republic and its diaspora, fully engaging the scholarly literature on this topic. Her research is groundbreaking and timely, particularly given the centrality of discussions on migration.