What is raw and what is cooked?

In News, Sex and Performance Theory, Schechner discusses the distinction between what is “raw” and what is “cooked” with regard to experience and news. In many cases we are confronted with this concept on a regular basis. How many news stations use “the RAW story” as a hook, as a way to all at once sensationalize and simplify the information they are about to present? This duality is something that Schechner seems to be struggling with, as he states that there isn’t “any such thing as ‘human nature’ understood as unmediated, direct, unrehearsed experience” (309). Hard as we try, in the eyes of Schechner, there is a consistent element of performance, thus life can at once fit into the standard theatrical mold. To “cook” or shape reality (or the news) is something that indeed occurs, and while motive is crucial to the end result, the constant struggle for unattainable neutrality also influences they way in which we present (and perform) ourselves.

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