This article explores the political and ethical implications of performance representing the ongoing realities of migration in contemporary Britain. Using Good Chance Theatre's The Jungle (2018) as its point of departure, the article problematizes the use of dramaturgies of proximity to confect simplistic notions of empathy as tantamount to political change. In a Brechtian vein, the article argues for modes of distanciation to foster critical engagement among audiences at the site of contemporary performance on migration. Focusing upon the production's West End transfer, its use of immersive strategies and its use of a comedic model to address ongoing issues in migration, this article finds that such strategies are not as politically transgressive as marketing and critical reception often contend them to be, with the onus of responsibility placed solely upon the individual spectator.

Open access

The article is available through open access at Theatre Research International's website.

The journal is a publication through International Federation for Theatre Research, the world's largest organisation of Theatre Research.

Emma Welton was as part of her programme one of the organizers of the event I AM HERE: An intervention at Dansmuseet in January 2020.

International Master’s Programme in Performance Studies