The World of a/the Monkey
Design by Studio Luc Derycke
The World of a/the Monkey is the written result of years of fascination by theater director Pol Dehert for the life and works of the 17th-century poet and libertine John Wilmot, alias "the monkey" and duke of Rochester. In this essay, devised as a play in several acts, Dehert sketches the signs of early modern visual culture, the prevalent theoretical morals of libertinism, and the theatrical baroque body. These findings coincide with the author's other fascination for everything popular: from burlesque theater over freak shows, variety and revue, to music hall, grand guignol and striptease. The premise for this publication was the author's eponym doctoral dissertation on Exhibiting Baroque Bodies, which was defended in 2015 at the Brussels' RITCS, Royal Institute for Theatre, Cinema and Sound.