Gender and Transformation in Mujeres en Ritual
Validating the practice of art for the empowerment of female identity and contesting borders of gender and sexual identities, in this chapter, the author describes the collaborative process of Mujeres en Ritual Danza-Teatro, a cross-border, all-women dance-theatre company, which she founded in 1999 in Tijuana, Mexico. Rooted in ritual and contemporary techniques of physical theatre, the work of Mujeres en Ritual explores the limits of gender, taboo sexuality, and culture in the border region. It examines the exploitation of women’s bodies as an extension of U.S.-Mexico relations and political economy. Through a community-based process with women on both sides of the border, the company experiments with gender transgression and transformation to arrive at transgenero (“transgender” and “trans-genre”) performance.
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