Abstract | Abstract
When the performance Living Dead premiered in Denmark in 2016, its reception was characterized by an equal amount of praise and unease. Written and directed by Christian Lollike, Living Dead dealt with the increasing number of refugees coming to Europe from Africa and the Middle East. Controversially, it was a “horror performance” focusing on the fear, anxiety, and potential dissolution of Europe. The article examines the agency of the performance. How does it engage our senses and sensibilities? How does the affective and intensive elements of horror relate to the representation of the refugees? And how may the horror on stage affect our feelings and stance towards refugees outside the theatre – and relate to contemporary humanitarianism? In order to clarify these questions, I will use the analytics of mediation suggested by Lilie Chouliaraki (2006), Sianne Ngai’s theory of “ugly feelings” (2007), and Judith Butler’s reflections on the sensual dimensions of war (2009).