Book review: The Only Way Home is Through the Show: Performance Work of Lois Weaver, editors Jen Harvie and Lois Weaver

Weaver Only Way HomeHarvie, Jen and Weaver, Lois, eds. The Only Way Home is Through the Show: Performance Work of Lois Weaver. Bristol: Intellect Ltd, 2015. Paper. 248p. $35.00. ISBN: 9781783205349

It is only fitting that the book that chronicles the career of pioneering feminist, lesbian performance artist, Lois Weaver is exceptional in its own right. This volume is a work of love with contributions from many of Lois’s collaborators, feminist theorists and writers. Included are her “partner in life and performance” Peggy Shaw, Muriel Miguel, Deb Margolin, Moe Angelos, Jill Dolan, Holly Hughes, and many more. Lois’s early work with Spiderwoman Theater, Split Britches, and the WOW Café Theater built a community of artists that reflected a world and sensibility historically denied a place on the stage.

From a landslide of photos, graphics, conversations, observations, and scripts, Harvie and Weaver immerse the reader in the story of 40 years of wildly creative and innovative theatre. Lois’s influence on the feminist performance community is unsurpassed, not only by her work on the stage, but in workshops, on universities and in festivals around the world. But she has also had a profound influence on the politics and passion of a movement that is still changing the world. This book should be included in all collections that address feminism, theatre or queerness.

Morgan Gwenwald, Head of Special Collections, SUNY New Paltz

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