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Call for Papers: Theatres of Phobias - An Interdisciplinary Colloquium for Researchers and Practitioners

News from Nov 07, 2017

Theatres of Phobias

An Interdisciplinary Colloquium for Researchers and Practitioners

9 December 2017

Kunstraum Kreuzberg Bethanien, Berlin

The world is arguably entering the era of ‘phobias’ – an era in which extreme or irrational aversions towards ‘others’ are rashly expressed. Concepts such as homophobia, Sinophobia, Islamophobia and xenophobia are in currency within global public discourse. More still, these labels could develop into distinct socio-political formations, through which the phobias attain specific political identities. The ‘others’ could potentially be mis/interpreted as ‘enemies’ for the sake of visualizing the political, economic, social, cultural, religious and various other unrests suppressed in society.

This call for papers invites researchers and art practitioners from a wide range of disciplines and with interdisciplinary perspectives to examine the relationship between politics, economics, society, culture and Theatres of Phobias. The word theatredoes not only suggest the representations on stage which give voice to the efflorescence of issues on migration. It could also be taken figuratively, and refer to the sociopolitical issues that stem from the event. Responses to the investigation can refer, but are not limited to: the forced performances of the so-called othersreified in their everyday lives; the theatricality of the media through which specific narratives are rendered; the theatrical dichotomy of the West and the restwhich could still be repeated obliviously; and, the xenophobic consolidation of the social class where people are categorized by their linguistic and economic performances.

Speaking specifically about the German cultural sphere, Berlin-based cultural institutions such as the Maxim Gorki Theatre, the Volksbühne or the Ballhaus Naunynstrasse have become veritable centers for criticizing and  commenting on the politics of phobias. Yet on the other hand, we have also witnessed fierce reactions towards an ‘other’ taking over the Volksbühne. How will the others be represented through artworks; and how will those others influence the Western art world in return?

We invite an interrogation of a wide spectrum of events and occurrences that fall within the literal and figurative ambit of this theme. In this colloquium, we invite responses to the investigation of the representation of ‘Others’ in the era of phobias. Theatres of Phobias is a colloquium organized by Kunstraum Kreuzberg Bethanien, with the collaboration of Tokyo Arts and Space.

We warmly welcome submissions from researchers from Germany and international universities for individual papers that do not exceed 20 minutes (in English). Alternatively, you can propose a topic for a 30-minute round table discussion. We also invite practice-based responses to this topic. Please submit your name, department, university, conference paper/round table title and a 250-word abstract, or practice-based statement of intent to theatreofphobias@gmail.com.

Extended Deadline for the application is 16 November 2017.

Please do contact us on theatreofphobias@gmail.com with any queries you may have. We look forward to hearing from you.

Kyoko Iwaki, Waseda Univesity, Visiting Researcher, Tsubouchi Memorial Theatre Museum, Director of Scene/Asia: A Pan-Asian Critical Theatre Platform

Promona Sengupta, Jawaharlal Nehru University, New Delhi, Doctoral Candidate, International Research Center: Interweaving Performance Cultures, Freie University Berlin

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Bundesministerium für Bildung und Forschung