Juan Del Valle Rojas | Imagining the Unpredictable: Communication, Power and Technology in José Ricardo Morales’ Transnational Theatre

Juan Del Valle Rojas | University of Groningen

My PhD research is mainly focused on the transnational and interdisciplinary dimension of Communication, Power and Technology in the work of Spanish-Chilean playwright José Ricardo Morales.

In particular, my goal is to shed light on the problematization of communication processes and power appropriation in Morales’ plays and essays. Morales’ major concern for the (im)possibility of communicating/representing the Other has led much of established criticism to label his legacy as absurdist theatre. However, in his book José Ricardo Morales de mar a mar (2014), Pablo Valdivia posits that Morales applied deconstruction avant la lettre to his conception of the performative process. In his plays and essays, language, technology, communication and representation are highly problematized, becoming, in fact, the central focus of his artistic endeavour. Morales anticipated the advent of Internet and digital media, nuclear technology, the dehumanization produced by the disjoint in communication processes and the hyper-globalized world.

My research will focus on three main objectives: (1) Problematize the notions of communication, power and technology in José Ricardo Morales’s transnational theatre; (2) Study the discursive elements in Morales’ writings in connection to the construction of alternative social and virtual imaginaries; (3) Revitalize Morales’ works in the context of educational, political, cultural and economic challenges.