Declaration of the Technical Word as Such a Play in One Act by Andrew C. Wenaus

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Declaration of the Technical Word as Such is a high-theory slapstick routine in response to Velimir Khlebnikov and Alexie Kruchenykh’s iconoclastic 1913 essay “Declaration of the Word as Such.” Whereas Khlebnikov and Kruchenykh suggest that an entire poem may be created from deliberate etymological permutations of a single word, Wenaus’ players declare what this means a century later when the word has become aggressively mediated through quantitative interfaces. Like a surrealist chain game for the stage, the players sequentially declare their manifesto, dying mid-sentence, only to have that very sentence picked up by another player without stutter or loss of beat. Unlike a surrealist chain game, however, no collective unconscious reveals itself; instead, we get a cohesive, inhuman processualism steering an entire group with unknowable intentionality. With spray-tanned bodybuilders, unwitting players, praise for Kenji Siratori’s glitch poetics, patamathematical acrobats, knock-kneed police officers, a pickpocketing man adorned as a palm tree, and a body count in the hundreds, Wenaus turns a clinical, impersonal eye on the processes of poetic articulation at a time when we emphatically declare that we are the masters of our language yet, with the word having transformed into the Flussurian “technical word,” that very language relentlessly and tirelessly shapes, steers, uses, and optimizes us for its own inscrutable ends.

Andrew C. Wenaus, 2023.
ISBN: 9798370830143. 81 pp.
Softcover. New.