CFP: Women in Action: Crisis, Activism, and Reconstruction (3/1/07; WTP, 7/24/07-7/25/07)

full name / name of organization: 
Sara L. Warner
contact email: 

please circulate:

Call for Papers
Women and Theatre Program (WTP) Conference
Association for Theatre in Higher Education (ATHE)
July 24-25, 2007 ~ New Orleans, Louisiana
The New Orleans Center for the Creative Arts

The present historical moment offers an auspicious opportunity for artists, activists, scholars, and communities to renegotiate, and perhaps redefine, the complex relationship between art and activism. As wars and natural disasters ravage countries and populations around the world, many governments and social service providers have been unwilling or unable to adequately protect or supply aid to those most in need. On July 24 and 25, 2007, in New Orleans, the Women and Theatre Program, a division of the Association for Theatre in Higher Education, will convene for its annual conference almost exactly two years after Hurricanes Rita and Katrina devastated a large swath of the Gulf Coast. This year members of WTP are particularly mindful of the ongoing struggles in this region of the U.S., and we hope to find ways in the course of the panels, workshops, performances, and other activities at the conference to use the site of New Orleans as an intellectual, if not an actual,
 launching point for discussing, linking, and responding to crises, recoveries, and reconstruction efforts throughout the world. We are especially concerned with the ways in which disasters, war, and other devastating events, from the personal to the global, have affected women and how women have responded to these situations.

This year's conference will include a feminist pedagogy workshop, some of Suzan-Lori Parks' 365 Days/365 Plays, a reading of the Jane Chambers Student Play Competition, and a series of exciting performances. The Conference Committee encourages proposals that incorporate innovative formats, numerous voices, partnerships and active dialogue. Proposals are urged to go beyond the traditional 3-speaker presentation for seminars, roundtables, performances, workshops, and poster sessions. There are also a couple of special projects with which volunteers can help. WTP wishes to use the 2007 gathering as a moment to address this ideological phenomenon and other forms of social change and community response. Events that affect whole communities also shape the ways in which people perceive and construct individual and group identities. Ideas of nation, global alliances, ethnic groups, and legal and cultural citizenship shift become narrower or more expansive in times of crisis.
 Some topics suggested by our membership include:

Utopian performance/troubled geographies
            The politics of rebuilding
     Carnival performance, transgression and regeneration
            Performing loss and mourning
            Gulf States/Gulf War(s): Theatres of war, theatres of disaster
            empathic proximity and performance
            feminist aesthetics and pedagogy in a landscape of crisis
            local/global citizenship and activist theatre
            drama therapy: healing/witnessing/exchanging
            disaster as landscape/performance as response
            the ethics of intervention
            crisis narratives: geopolitical/generational threads
            creating affiliations – piecing together shreds of evidence
            ghosts of history: diaspora, nation, race and performance
            feminist models of engagement/collaboration/partnership
            the aesthetics and practicalities of witnessing
            remnants, wreckage and echoes: the strategies and problems of (re)construction
            confinement, liberation, overflowing and engulfings: the ethos and ecology of
honoring performance traditions/creating new forms

SUBMISSION PROCESS: Submissions for the conference should be emailed to Ashley Lucas at by March 1, 2007. In addition, feel free to contact Ashley with any questions or concerns about the submission process. Further information on WTP, its membership and events (as well as how to join the WTP listserv) can be accessed at

For academic panels, seminars, and roundtables:
WTP does not accept proposals indicating that presenters are still to be determined. All persons whose names appear on submissions must have agreed to attend the WTP conference. Priority will be given to proposals that include representatives from various institutions (rather than the same university). Potential presenters should not apply to be on more than one panel.

While individual submissions will be considered, preference is given to proposals with a range of participants. You are encouraged to assemble these by networking on the ATHE and WTP listserves. (See "Resources" on the ATHE webpage for information on subscribing to the ATHECALL listserv.) If you are having difficulty assembling proposals, please contact Ashley Lucas at by February 22.

For workshops, performances, and other creative ventures:
Please submit a one to two page proposal of your workshop, performance, or other creative project. Include a description of the project, any technical needs (lights, sound, etc.), length of time needed, and the number of people involved in the project. WTP is only able to provide limited technical support, so projects with few technical needs will be privileged in the selection process.

To contribute to a multimedia tribute performance about Hurricanes Rita and Katrina and the aftermath of the storms:
One special event at this year's conference requires a great deal of help from the WTP membership as a group. We need you to send in your stories, photos, artwork, and other reflections on your or your loved ones' experiences of Hurricanes Rita and Katrina and their aftermath. We would like to create a multimedia performance piece which incorporates as many stories as possible. Though we are certainly searching for the voices of those who actually lived through the storms, we are also interested in hearing from those of you who volunteered with hurricane relief organizations in your hometowns or in the disaster areas themselves. We want to hear from folks who have interacted with storm evacuees, health organizations, and insurance companies in the storms' wake. Do you have copies of emails that were exchanged among family members searching for one another or reassuring those who were farther away? Do you have photos of the storm or artwork depicting your reflections
 on it? Send us your thoughts and stories. We would like for this performance piece to be a collective work created by WTP as a whole community, so lift your voices! Please send your ideas and contributions to this project to Ashley Lucas at

To direct or perform in one of Suzan-Lori Park's 365 Days/365 Plays:
The WTP conference will feature performances of several of Suzan-Lori Park's very short plays from the 365 Days/365 Plays project. If you would be interested in directing or acting in one or more of the plays at our conference, please email Ashley Lucas at

The Women and Theatre Program is a self-incorporated division of the Association for Theatre in Higher Education (ATHE). Founded in 1974, our mission is to bring theater professionals together with academics and activists. In the years since our inception, WTP has sponsored panels and activities at ATHE's annual conference. In 1980, WTP began holding its own annual pre-ATHE conference. The continuing goal of WTP is to enable feminist inquiry and to provide opportunities for discussion between those who teach, perform, and theorize about feminism, theatre, and performance.

To: Ashley Lucas at

--Sara L. Warner, Ph.D.Assistant ProfessorCornell UniversityDepartment of Theatre, Film, & DanceSchwartz Center for the Performing Arts430 College AvenueIthaca, NY 14850607.254.2727 ========================================================== From the Literary Calls for Papers Mailing List Full Information at or write Jennifer Higginbotham: ==========================================================Received on Sun Feb 04 2007 - 13:54:30 EST