Meaning in the Weaving: Mapping and Texture as Figures of Spatiality and Eventness


  • Teemu Paavolainen University of Tampere



dramaturgy, ecology, metaphor, texture, weaving, Tim Ingold, Stephen C. Pepper


Advocating a dramaturgical ontology of events rather than objects – or ecologies rather than cartographies – the article defends the metaphors of texture and weaving as intuitive, non-anthropocentric alternatives to current idioms of becoming and emergence. Already popularized as the very definition of “dramaturgy” by Eugenio Barba, these are specifically traced through Tim Ingold’s recent anthropology of weaving and S. C. Pepper’s philosophical pragmatism: where Ingold’s ecology of lines admits to “no insides or outsides [...] trailing loose ends in every direction”, Pepper’s “contextualistic world” of events admits “no top nor bottom” to its strands and textures. Intended only as a theoretical introduction to the implications of a certain family of metaphors (complete with a graphic representation thereof ), this article distinguishes the eventness of texture from certain notions of spatial “mapping” and discusses the “ecological” range of the metaphor through the concepts of textural fusion and spread.

Author Biography

Teemu Paavolainen, University of Tampere

Teemu Paavolainen is a postdoctoral researcher at the Centre for Practice as Research in Theatre, University of Tampere. His Theatre/Ecology/Cognition: Theorizing Performer-Object Interaction in Grotowski, Kantor, and Meyerhold was published by Palgrave Macmillan in 2012. He is currently finishing another research monograph. Work on this project was enabled by a three-year postdoc- toral funding from the Academy of Finland in 2012-15, also to be acknowledged for the writing of this article. The full manuscript is to be completed in 2016 and is tentatively titled Texture: Theatricality and Performativity from a Dramaturgical Perspective.


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How to Cite

Paavolainen, T. (2015). Meaning in the Weaving: Mapping and Texture as Figures of Spatiality and Eventness. Nordic Theatre Studies, 27(2), 10–21.



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