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The Reality Shows

This book can be downloaded and read in Apple Books on your Mac or iOS device.


"Ms. Finley hasn't lost the power to disturb."—Ben Brantley, The New York Times

No other performing artist has captured the psychological complexity of this decade as Karen Finley has. In her inimitable style, she has embodied some of the most troubling figures to cast a long shadow on the public imagination, and has envisioned a kind of catharsis within each drama: Liza Minnelli responds to the September 11 attacks; Terri Schiavo explains why Americans love a woman in a coma; Martha Stewart dumps George W. Bush during their tryst on the eve of the Republican National Convention; Silda Spitzer tells the former governor why “I’m sorry” just isn’t enough; and the ghost of Jackie O cries, “Please stop looking at me!" The Reality Shows is a revelation of a decade by one of our greatest interpreters of popular and political culture.

From Publishers Weekly

Mar 07, 2011 – Finley (Shock Treatment) begins this showcase of recent work performance, installation, conceptual, and visual art with "Make Love," an homage to post-9/11 New York via "a cabaret-driven, lounge-style act that channels Liza Minnelli," who is used as a stand-in for the city and also to soften the subject for the audience. "The Passion of Terri Schiavo" allows Finley to examine the "political, ethical, and moral dilemmas" of the case, resulting in a feverish mantra told from multiple perspectives. The amusing "George and Martha" imagines a love affair between George W. Bush and Martha Stewart as a highly-eroticized Freudian romp both disturbing and hilarious. In her foreword, Hanna recalls an early show by Finley as "the most intensely vulnerable, perfectly crafted performance I'd ever seen," akin to "watching Patti Smith turn into Evel Knievel." Reproducing performance pieces as text, says Hanna, "lets you get at so many other layers of meaning." True, but it also serves as a sort of artistic kryptonite, stripping away what gives Finley much of her power. Illus.
The Reality Shows
View in iTunes
  • $17.99
  • Available on iPhone, iPad, iPod touch, and Mac.
  • Category: Art & Architecture
  • Published: Feb 22, 2011
  • Publisher: The Feminist Press at CUNY
  • Seller: Perseus Books, LLC
  • Print Length: 220 Pages
  • Language: English
  • Requirements: This book can only be viewed on an iOS device with Apple Books on iOS 12 or later, iBooks 1.3.1 or later and iOS 4.3.3 or later, or a Mac with iBooks 1.0 or later and OS X 10.9 or later.

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