Theater – Resistance to the White Queen until January 5, 2020

You still have a few days to see the play The entry into resistance at the Queen Blanche Theater. This piece offers a sweet and seductive critique of the current organization of work through a psychological and psychoanalytic reflection of its effects.

The place

This place of independent culture, hidden in the heart of the district of La Chapelle offers a selection of theatrical creations always very sharp. The White Queen-Scene of the Arts and Sciences favors a logic of hybridization in order to participate in decompartmentalizing the disciplines, considering the sciences as an integral part of culture. On stage, we find Christophe Dejours, Jean-Pierre Bodin and Alexandrine Brisson. The first is a psychiatrist, psychoanalyst and university professor of psychology. This specialist has been studying suffering at work for many years. Jean-Pierre Bodin is an author, director and actor and Alexandrine Brisson is a director and musician. The trio co-wrote and staged the show.

Art and science: same conclusion

The staging is very simple. The only actor (Jean-Pierre Bodin) begins by telling a story: that of a forest warden who sees his work transformed. When he had been trained to take care of nature and protect the forest, he was led to amputate hundreds of trees and forced to create a monoculture for reasons of competitiveness and productivity imposed by his hierarchy. He finds himself confronted with a moral dilemma coupled with a personal problem around his well-being. How to make his voice heard, he who claims that these decisions are bad for biodiversity and ecosystems when his colleagues are not trying to oppose? Especially since his hierarchy threatens to kick him out, he who still needs money …

The play alternates between these moments played by the actor, musical sessions and speeches by Christophe Dejours. The latter interferes in the show by taking a break from the narration. He takes the time to explain, in an affordable way, more or less in the form of a conference, the different problems, knots, conflicts that the character encounters. He takes the time to unravel, thanks to the support of this science which is psychology, imprecations, and the difficulties which arise with the studied subject. Gradually, in a benevolent approach, the researcher explains step by step the key concepts of work psychology. This branch of psychology is interested in human attitudes and behaviors related to work and its challenges. The video produced by Alexandrine Brisson is projected on the three screens of the stage. She decided to film nature, from near, far, from different angles and with different shots. The actors' play with the three modular screens and a few pieces of music constitute the major part of the staging.

Work imperatively at all costs

Of the three characters on stages at least sixty years old, emanates a particular beauty and softness. With the air of not touching it, to the rhythm of the music of Bach, Schubert and Mendelssohn, they develop together a significant criticism of the Work by highlighting the concerns posed by a furious management, happy theory that reigns in companies or the pressure that weighs on employees.

Christophe Dejours, during one of his first interventions, explains by relying on Ethics at Nicomaque of Aristotle the idea that work brings emancipation and has a direct link with freedom. That work, at the beginning, brings to the individual, is witness to a know-how and a pleasure to perform the tasks. Without bluntness, as a psychologist, he accuses the methods of the business world which pressurize the employees sometimes pushing them to burnout. We can also think of intimidation techniques, both psychological and sexual harassment which many people in France are victims of today. The statement advanced by the psychoanalyst, resulting from multiple researches and studies in hospital centers carried out for years is without appeal: the quality of work, since the 80s, deteriorates sharply.

A culture of resistance

The interest of this theatrical creation goes beyond this observation. First of all, the subject is not untimely and garish. The three author-characters, also very charismatic, put forward a certain majesty in affirming this rather dark truth. With warmth and tenderness, they invite spectators to rebellion no more no less. He who expected a show at the crossroads of the arts and sciences – which he was promised, he discovers a show at the crossroads of social struggles and ecological struggles. Art is, in this case, a vector of politicization. They directly call for resistance to militant collectives and associations to overcome loneliness and the individualist atomist. They do not advocate an angry or violent radicalism, two terms which serve in far too recurrent ways to qualify radicality but a confident, assertive and voluntary radicality.

Their presence on stage already creates another space and another time for the spectator who accompanies them. So, why don't they suggest creating more than three other spaces and other times to create, work and live differently? This beautiful spectacle is delicate, touching, raw and strong. He invites without difficulty to exercise his critical spirit and to reflect on the living and working conditions of the XXth century.

The entry into resistance, at the Théâtre La Reine Blanche – Scène des Arts et des Sciences, 2 bis passage Ruelle, 75018 Paris until January 5, 2020 from Wednesday to Saturday at 8.45 p.m. & Sunday at 4 p.m. Prices: full 25 €, reduced 20 €, -26 years 10 €

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