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Dada 1916 in TheoryPractices of Critical Resistance$
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Dafydd Jones

Print publication date: 2014

Print ISBN-13: 9781781380208

Published to Liverpool Scholarship Online: January 2015

DOI: 10.5949/liverpool/9781781380208.001.0001

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Introduction: Against the ‘Infamous Thing’

Introduction: Against the ‘Infamous Thing’

(p.1) Introduction: Against the ‘Infamous Thing’
Dada 1916 in Theory

Dafydd W. Jones

Liverpool University Press

Dada is a culturally complex proposition for its resistant and ruptive dimensions militating against any easy reading when we move away from its documentation, to begin to prise possible meanings from its cultural residue. The ‘infamous thing’ was Voltaire’s description of the objectionable incarnations of a privileged orthodoxy, and it was in his name that the first Dada manifestation took place at the Cabaret Voltaire in 1916. This introduction to Dada 1916 in Theory outlines the challenges posed by Dada – culturally, politically, socially – and the necessity of revised modes of engagements art historically in order for Dada to continue as an object of interrogation and ongoing relevance in twenty-first century cultural activity.

Keywords:   laughter, avant-garde, social production, Voltaire, oppositionality

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