Intersections 2018

UNMENTIONABLES: ‘no-go’ areas in performance practices and research.


The Royal Central School of Speech and Drama’s annual Intersections Conference will be held on Thursday the 18th and Friday the 19th of January 2018. Led by the Research Degrees community at Central, Intersections seeks to engage with current theoretical and conceptual discourses in performance research, not only to highlight the diverse research interests at Central, but also to host a range of national and international scholars from a variety of backgrounds and institutions, addressing points of intersection between disciplines, fields and modes of research. Panels are composed of researchers whose papers may potentially speak to each other not within the confines of perceived fields of performance (as defined by genres of performance, for example), but through concepts, concerns and issues which may be common to a wide range of researchers in performance, including crossing boundaries between practice-as-research and so-called ‘conventional’ research.

The postgraduate community at Central invites proposals for papers, panels, provocations and performative lectures. The theme of this year’s conference is: UNMENTIONABLES: ‘no-go’ areas in performance practices and research.

We’ve seen it all – the scandalous, the sacrilegious and the outrageous. In some arenas of art and performance it seems that there are no more boundaries to cross, no thresholds to raise. Artists have performed sexual acts, bled and even killed in the making of their work. Theorists have shattered totems and broken taboos. We are unshockable.

Or are we? Do we, however tacitly, subject ourselves and others to different forms of censorship? Do we police language? Do we confine ourselves to echo chambers and suffocate the free exchange of ideas? Even artists, perhaps especially them, who had previously been agitators and provocateurs often find themselves in the position of a shocked audience, forced to respond to provocative gestures made by politicians, celebrities and other public figures. When global leaders can scandalize the world with a tweet, what role does art play in challenging norms and frontiers?

Intersections 2018 peeks at the unmentionables of performance practices and research. Its aim is to seek out the contours, the edges and the boundaries we encounter, be they self-imposed, externally enforced, or simply the limits of our own ability to understand and to articulate our experience. Where do artists and theorists still come up against blockades? Where have the lines been drawn in our disciplines and where do we draw the line?

Keynote address by Anna Birch

Keynote address by Nina Power

Please use Eventbrite to register for the conference.

If you have any questions regarding Intersections, please contact intersections.central@gmail.com.

For more information about Royal Central School of Speech and Drama, please visit www.cssd.ac.uk.