Reason’s Muscle is a dance theater piece which playfully deals with two questions: 1) Is the world getting better or worse? 2) If it is getting better, what is driving that progress?
The piece stages a dialogue between the cognitive scientist and linguist Steven Pinker and his wife, the renowned philosopher Rebecca Newberger Goldstein. This dialogue, which is based on their writings and research, explores questions of philosophy, morality and human nature. Dancers interact with the speakers on stage. As ‘rhetorical tools’, they accompany, comment upon and illuminate the arguments. Now and then they create a humorous productive disturbance, affecting the pace of the discourse, giving the audience a chance to keep up with the lively debate.
Certain aspects of the script and staging will be developed in a participatory process. The resulting text will be performed on stage by professionals.