Call for Papers: Theatre for Development (TfD): Historical and Institutional Perspectives.

Pretoria, South Africa, 16-20 March, 2020

International Conference, organized by ERC project Developing Theatre: Building Expert Networks for Theatre in Emerging Countries after 1945 & Department of Drama & Film Studies, Tshwane University of Technology in Pretoria, South Africa.

In March 2020, the ERC funded project Developing Theatre: Building Expert Networks for Theatre in Emerging Countries after 1945 at LMU Munich will be organizing an international conference in collaboration with Tshwane University of Technology in Pretoria, South Africa on the topic Theatre for Development (TfD): Historical and Institutional Perspectives.

The thrust of the conference will be to contextualize the emergence of TfD, especially in the first decades in Africa. From its early beginnings in the 1970s under different nomenclatures and practices –“popular theatre”, “community theatre” – TfD quickly transformed itself into a coherent organizational field capable of attracting significant governmental and NGO funding. It also affected a change in the teaching and practice of theatre studies in many African countries. The argument could be made that the success of TfD in the Global South has contributed significantly to the emergence of Applied Theatre as a sub discipline in many Global North countries.

This conference seeks to explore the genealogy, the varied contexts of its development, theories and institutional perspectives. Key issues the conference will interrogate include the varied manifestations of the genre and its influence across cultures and continents; funding (Governmental and NGOs), networks of individuals and institutions that propelled its rapid growth and acceptance within academic and non-academic contexts.

We welcome contributions which engage with and provoke dialogue about the historiography of the Theatre for Development paradigm. Topics might include, but are not limited to the following:

  • Historiography and Archiving of Theatre for Development
  • Periodization and diffusion
  • Seminal figures and initiators
  • The dialectics of Africa’s development and Theatre for Development
  • Integrating (new) media into TfD
  • The politics of funding (governmental and NGOs) and influence on TfD
  • Theories, Training and TfD Practitioners
  • Theatre for Development within and outside the academia
  • Networks, institutions and organizations
  • Critical reflections within the field
  • Brecht, Freire, Boal and the emergence of TfD

Deadline 30th May 2019
Reply to:
Abdul Karim Hakib
Doctoral ResearcherERC Project “Developing Theatre”, Institut für Theaterwissenschaft, LMU München
email: Hakib.Karim@lmu.de

Vorschau(öffnet in neuem Tab)

A warm welcome to Gideon Ime Morison, new PhD student of our ERC Project „Developing Theatre“

We are very pleased to announce that Gideon Ime Morison joined the ERC Project „Developing Theatre: Building Expert Networks for Theatre in Emerging Countries after 1945“  in January, 2019. His PhD research will focus on expert networks, techno-politics and emergent performance trends in select Pan-African cultural and arts festivals focusing, particularly, on FESTAC ’77 and PANAFEST.

Gideon Ime Morison is a poet, academic, researcher, blogger, and theatre/cultural critic. He is an Alumnus of the Department of Theatre, Film and Carnival Studies, University of Calabar and the Department of Theatre Arts, University of Uyo, Nigeria.

Gideon Morison has tutored, partnered and consulted widely for individuals and bodies corporate. His research output, which straddle areas such as media / theatre theory, history and criticism, development communication and comparative cultural studies, has been published severally in the Nigerian Theatre Journal, Parnassus, and Bianchi Journal. He also lectures in the Department of Theatre Arts, School of Secondary Education (Arts and Social Sciences), Federal College of Education (Technical), Omoku, Rivers State – Nigeria.

Expert networks, techno-politics and emergent performance trends in select Pan-African cultural and arts festivals

Global historical happenings such as the Slave Trade, Colonization, World War II and the integration of oppositional voices or liberation movements against them are widely assumed to have had a profound influence / impact on the emergence, development and diversity of performance culture across the African continent. The philosophy and activism of movements like the slave trade abolitionist group, negritude, nationalist political organizations, as well as arts and cultural troupes / groups sponsored or funded from the diaspora seems to have created a network of collaborations with the goal of forging a renaissance in African identity as expressed / exhibited through various international cultural and arts festivals held in Africa from 1966 to 1977 and beyond. Gideon Morison’s research will focus on the critical examination of the global linkages, expert networks, and techno-politics that enabled the staging of these events. With particular emphasis on FESTAC ´77 and the emergent Pan-African Historical Festival (PANAFEST), this study assess the contributions and legacies of the festivals on the performance praxis in the post-colonial territories in which the festivals were and / or still staged.