As domésticas (1985)
  • Title: As domésticas
  • Alternate Title: The maids
  • Holdings: photo gallery, video (HIDVL)
  • Language: Portuguese
  • Date: 1985
  • Location: Porto Alegre, Brazil
  • Type-Format: play, performance
  • Cast: Horácio Borges, Paulo Flores, and Renan Costa
  • Credits: Play by Jean Genet; Ói Nóis Aqui Traveiz, direction; Isabella Lacerda, set and costumes; Arlete Cunha, props and make-up; Danilo Costa, lighting

As domésticas (1985)

This staging of Genet's The Maids focuses on the relationships of exploitation and subservience that inform the class differences between the two maids and their rich mistress. The production emphasizes the theme of a feminine universe subjugated to an essentially macho society by having the female characters be played by men. The set — chairs for the audience, a double bed, a wardrobe, and a dresser with a mirror — is decorated with flowers, satin drapes, an altar for a saint that stands for the mistress, and a large painting of a phallus. The staging takes place as a mystic-erotic ceremony, and the entire configuration of the furniture is phallic. In the role playing games the maids play, the ambiguities in their relationship to their mistress become obvious. They are connected to her image by affection, erotism, and hatred, while they nurture a deep feeling of contempt for each other, since they see in each other what they really are. Their greatest desire is not to eliminate the class to which their mistress belongs, but rather to occupy her place in society.


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