Title: Stage actors and emotions at work

Authors: Stina Bergman Blix

Addresses: Department of Sociology, Stockholm University, S-106 91 Stockholm, Sweden

Abstract: We examine the distinctions between |playing| and |playing at| and between deep and surface acting made by Goffman and Hochschild, using examples from stage-rehearsals. This reveals how stage actors switch between these modes and employ various manifestations, rather than using either of them exclusively. The findings are thought to have conceptual implications beyond the particular case of stage acting. One tentative conclusion is that the difference between an actor rehearsing an emotion-laden situation and experiencing a similar situation in real life lies in how the situation is confronted and handled rather than in the actual emotions.

Keywords: stage actors; emotional labour; deep acting; profession; theatre; Goffman; Hochschild; work emotion; stage rehersals; surface acting; emotion handling.

DOI: 10.1504/IJWOE.2007.017016

International Journal of Work Organisation and Emotion, 2007 Vol.2 No.2, pp.161 - 172

Published online: 04 Feb 2008 *

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