Natalie Alvarez, Immersions in Cultural Difference: Tourism, War, Performance (U of Michigan Press, 2018).

The Ann Saddlemyer Committee is pleased to present the 2019 award to Natalie Alvarez for her book, Immersions in Cultural Difference: Tourism, War, Performance (University of Michigan Press).

Both theoretical treatise and reportage, this dense and extraordinarily rigorous book uses an interdisciplinary analytic lens to skillfully situate immersive simulations within the context of capitalist “experience economy.” Its strengths include Alvarez’s finely nuanced detail as she recounts her personal experience of immersion in each case study, and the ease with which she moves from deep analysis to humourous anecdote. We hear her voice throughout, and the committee was deeply impressed by her self-questioning of the moral and ethical dilemmas of her fieldwork. Her book is an important contribution that has much to offer scholars in and beyond the field of theatre and performance studies