Performance's mode of reproduction I: searching for Danh Võ’s mother

Joshua Chambers-Letson*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

5 Scopus citations


This essay returns to key debates in performance theory regarding the relationship between performance and reproduction, offering a Marxian inflected theory of performance’s mode of reproduction. It suggests that both performance theory and Marxist theory appropriate the mother function in describing performance’s mode of reproduction and the reproduction of capital, while displacing the mother in the process. Through a reading of the work of contemporary artist Danh Võ, the essay explores how performance’s mode of reproduction can affect the reproduction and sustenance of minoritarian life against historical, social, and economic forces of elision, erasure, and annihilation.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)122-145
Number of pages24
JournalWomen and Performance
Issue number2-3
StatePublished - Sep 1 2016


  • Danh Võ
  • performance theory
  • reproduction

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Gender Studies
  • Visual Arts and Performing Arts


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