‘Alive’ Performance: Toward an Immersive Activist Philosophy


  • Annalaura Alifuoco Liverpool Hope University




activist philosophy, embodied knowledge, affect theory


This article proposes to reanalyse the artistic and critical practice of performance through the deconstruction and remediation of its ‘virtual,’ unsighted potentials. It argues that the ontological distinction between material and immaterial representation can be dislodged by the proposition of an ontogenenic dimension of affective transmission and recreation. Such recursive system of forces and energies elicits change and transformation expanding the sensual and aesthetic practice of performance as alive art.

These arguments connect concepts from aesthetic and political theory with philosophical ideas of virtual multiplicity, relationality, counter/intuition and (dis)individuation passing via the work of Brian Massumi and Teresa Brennan as well as other theorists. The approach intersects methodologies and epistemologies from activist philosophy, science and art with the radical contingencies implicit in performance as a ‘technology of aliveness’ (in)formed by tendencies of distribution of affective intensities and temporal (re)modulation of shared perception.

Ultimately, these formulations propose to reimagine performance as a synaesthetic archive of perceptive experience marked by a representational impossibility; a failure to appear fully. This actual condition of recurrent abstraction enables however a processual state of becoming, becoming-other, and being-becoming in related mo(ve)ments of pure aliveness.

Author Biography

Annalaura Alifuoco, Liverpool Hope University

Annalaura works across performance and academia, and between London and Liverpool. Since 2015, she holds a lectureship post at Liverpool Hope University in Drama and Performance Studies. Her current practice explores performance as a frame that renders interesting collaborations between the so-called human, nonhuman life and immaterial agencies. The ensuing critical and physical forms focus on anomalous or fragmented bodies in relation to affective politics, radical activism and cosmopolitics. Always passionately seeking meaningful collaborations and participations to further these concerns, together with others.


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How to Cite

Alifuoco, A. (2017). ‘Alive’ Performance: Toward an Immersive Activist Philosophy. Performance Philosophy, 3(1), 126–145. https://doi.org/10.21476/PP.2017.3187