Performance as Research and Democracy

Country: India

City: Hyderabad

Abstr. due: 31.01.2015

Dates: 05.07.15 — 10.07.15

Area Of Sciences: Political science;

Organizing comittee e-mail:

Organizers: Department of Theatre Arts, University of Hyderabad (UoH).


For the 2015 meeting of the Performance as Research Working Group of IFTR, we are sending out a call for proposals that will respond to the wider conference theme, ⌠Theatre and Democracy, from a specifically performance as research (PaR) perspective, with a special focus on politics, methodology and performance in a wide sense, including dance, theatre, live art and experimental practices. In Practice-as-Research in Performance and Screen, Baz Kershaw (2009, 15) suggests that the foundational principles of practice-as-research work to a democratically deconstructive and decentering agenda. We seek to interrogate the relationship between democracy and performance as research, and welcome proposals exploring (but not limited to) the following themes:

1. PaR, politics and society

What is the relationship of PaR projects to the larger society where they take place?
How do practitioner-researchers conduct PaR research in and across cultures and institutions, and how are they responding to specific social and political systems?
How are PaR projects involved in democracy and social action in the public sphere?
How can PaR respond to democratic issues of representation and dialogue in terms of culture, gender and sexuality through performance/research design?
How can we include our non-human counterparts in a PaR ecology, with animals, plants, objects, space, and networks all considered as part of the performance/research process?
Can performance as research projects envision more democratic (or other alternative) institutional structures for society?

 2. PaR and performance practice

What kinds of PaR practice particularly explore and/or challenge ideals of democracy and why?
Can we locate PaR case studies that aspire to specific qualities of democracy or operate outside of democratic processes?
What power relations are in operation in the production of performances in PaR projects including issues of authority, censorship, access to resources, institutional directives and so on?
What is the status of the various practitioners in performance projects and who has a voice in the dissemination of performance as research?

3. PaR, democracy and methodology

What is the relationship between PaR as a methodology and democratic values?
Is PaR a more ▒democratic methodology than others, in areas of research activities and dissemination?
Who are the ▒eligible citizens in PaR projects √ who is being included or excluded and who is being represented?
How do the democratic ideals of PaR projects compare with those of social sciences and other disciplines?
How do digital technologies impact on the distribution of PaR projects and what are the issues of participation, inclusion, policy and rights involved in the circulation of materials online?
How can the PaR Working Group devise modes of operation, democratic or otherwise, that encourage dialogue and engagement with the issues of its membership within the Working Group context?

We are planning a collaborative session with the Queer Futures Working Group, if you feel your proposal fits within both the remit of Performance as Research and Queer Futures, please identify this in your proposal.

Conference Web-Site: