A Shared Truth is an outstanding contribution to the study of Mexican theater and performance. Through her meticulous, theoretically rich, thoroughly documented, and contextualized analysis of Lagartija's repertoire, Ward demonstrates how this independent theater group devises plays that combine autobiography, national history, and documentary materials to offer a more truthful truth regarding Mexico's nebulous past and present.
Lagartijas Tiradas al Sol (Lizards Lounging in the Sun) is a Mexican theater company that performs what is known as theater of the real.By taking reality as its subject, this genre claims a special relationship to reality, truth, and authenticity. In A Shared Truth, Julie Ann Ward traces the development of this contemporary and cutting-edge collective’s unique aesthetic. Based on performances, play texts, videos, and interviews, this in-depth look at a single theatrical troupe argues that the company’s work represents a larger trend in which Latin American theater positions itself as a source of and repository for truth in the face of unreliable official narratives. A Shared Truth critically examines the work of an influential company whose collaborative methods and engagement with the real challenge the bounds of theater.
A Shared Truth provides powerful insight into the theater of the real, which in Mexico has its roots in legendary playwrights who penned both current, ripped-from-the-headlines plays, as well as plays based on historical accounts of major events and well-known public figures. Ward offers a meticulously researched, engaging account of one of Mexico’s most well-known performance collectives, Lagartijas Tiradas al Sol, while at the same time theorizing the intersections of personal and family histories, and the ways they question, complement, or subvert ‘official’ histories of Mexico.