Performing Borders/Performances on the Border

deadline for submissions: 
April 1, 2021
full name / name of organization: 
MLA LLC Latina and Latino Forum
contact email: 

Contemporary Latinx writers, visual artists, dancers, and performance artists enact, embody, cross, and defy multiple borders –  those of nation, gender, race, language, climate, species, among others – in their work. In doing so they often draw on indigenous and other inherited forms of cultural expression, reclaiming and resignifying them in the process. The tension between the desire to belong to a rooted community and the longing to break away from a prescriptive collective is a hallmark of Latinx expression on various borders – ranging from the Chihuahuan desert to the Massacre River. For example, the struggle over territorial sovereignty and water rights in the US/Mexico borderlands can be put in productive conversation with the fight for racial equality and protection of rain forests in the Haitian/Dominican border region.  We are interested in contributions by scholars and artists who work on contemporary Latinx performance at the intersection of indigenous practice and post-punk technology, within the materiality of rasquache and border walls, and in the interstices of inhumane immigration legislation and the economic promises of the border patrol.

The LLC Latina and Latino Forum at the MLA welcomes papers for a panel at the 2022 Modern Language Association Convention (to be held January 6-9, 2022, in Washington, D.C.,) that explore performing borders and performance on the border in a Latinx context. We welcome especially work by/on multilingual performance, Afro-Latinx performance, and performance engaging undocumented migration. Paper proposals may explore, but are not limited to, the following:

  • Multilingual spoken word poetry, especially including indigenous languages
  • Queer(ing) performance
  • Performance, technology, and the state, including "security" studies
  • Interactive performance, including audiences
  • Performance at the intersection of spoken word, music, and dance
  • Traditional literary forms, such as novels, engaging with performance
  • Drama on the border/dramatizing borders/using the border as a stage
  • Transnational performance and ecocriticism

The deadline for abstract submissions for this panel is Thursday, April 1, 2021. Please send, as an attachment, an abstract of no more than 300 words and a brief CV to Dr. Marion Christina Rohrleitner (mcrohrleitner@utep.edu).