CFP: Staging the Post-Dramatic: 21st-Century German Theater

Northeastern Modern Language Association (NeMLA), Pittsburgh, PA
(Sep 30 2017; April 12-15 2018)

The theme of the 2018 Northeastern Modern Language Association’s annual convention is “Global Spaces, Local Landscapes and Imagined Worlds.” This panel explores how contemporary German-language theater creates spaces for new conversations about gender, ethnic identity, and other aspects of political and social reality. In 2001, Hans-Thies Lehmann’s Postdramatisches Theater theorized post-Brechtian theater. Is today still the age of post-dramatic theater? If not, what comes next?

How have Christoph Schlingensief and other recent directors fundamentally changed German-language theater today? How do prolific established dramatists such as Elfriede Jelinek and Rainald Goetz continue to push the stage in new directions? How do works such as René Pollesch’s Ruhrtrilogie open new conversations about media, interior/exterior space, and the public sphere? The New York Times’ Rachel Donadio has described new works performed by Berlin’s “Exil Ensemble” and Munich’s “Open Border Ensemble” as being “built around a journey rather than a plot.” Very recent pieces such as Yael Ronen’s “The Situation” (in German, English, Arabic, and Hebrew) and “Winterreise” (2017) attempt to strike a balance among historical situatedness, creative empowerment, polyglot linguistic practices, and political engagement. In response to these and other new developments, this panel seeks contributions that examine all aspects of recent innovations in German-language theater and drama.

Topics might include, but are not limited to:

  • Theoretical approaches to contemporary German-language theater and performance.
  • Original literary analyses of contemporary theatrical works that address border crossings, ethnicity, and/or world-creation.
  • New analyses of German-language theater or performance that engages with political and social change
  • The creation and definition of theatrical spaces in the broader sense – politics as performance, teaching as theater, etc.
  • The relationship of contemporary theater to text, storytelling, and collectivity.


Please submit abstracts of approximately 250 words, including the submitter’s biographical information through the NeMLA website:
https://www.buffalo.edu/nemla/convention/submit.html

Submission deadline: September 30, 2017

For inquiries about the panel, contact:
Pascale LaFountain, Assistant Professor of German and French, Montclair State University (lafountainp@montclair.edu)
Lisa Parkes, Senior Lecturer in German, Harvard University (lparkes@fas.harvard.edu)

CfP: The “Epic” Bertolt Brecht (Graduate Student Conference)

23–24 September, 2017, University of Cincinnati, OH, USA

The Editors of the graduate student journal Focus on German Studies in conjunction with the Graduate Student Association of the Department of German Studies at the University of Cincinnati present the Twenty-Second Annual Focus Graduate Student Conference:

The

“Epic”

Bertolt Brecht

Bertolt Brecht is well-known for his “episches Theater,” a style of theater meant to provoke thought and reason in the audience over a sense of feeling and empathy with the performers. Yet, many believed Brecht ultimately failed in this regard to create truly epic theatre. In this conference, we seek to push the boundaries of the nature of the epic style and to highlight its successes and future as a viable and powerful style of theater, by exploring a wide range of live performance and film and media, both by and inspired by, Brecht.

Specifically, we are interested in creating panels that discuss the epic style in Brecht’s works of Spoken Theater and Musicals, Operas, Cabaret, Radio-plays and Cantatas, The Use of Screens in Live Performance, and the Epic Style in Screenplays and Film Studies, in the Weimar Republic, his Exile, and the GDR. We would also like to have a panel on the Epic Style in the Twenty-First Century and/or the Future of Epic Theater.

Current graduate students are invited to send 250-word abstracts to Ellen C. Chew at fogs.editor@gmail.com by July 9th, 2017. Submissions are welcome from any discipline. Papers may be presented in either German or English.

Lesser-known works are always encouraged! Graduate Students in German Studies, European Studies, History, Musicology, Theater and Performance Studies, Women’s, Gender and Sexuality Studies, and Film and Media Studies are strongly encouraged to apply.

Workshop Program: Baustelle Brecht / Working with Brecht

Program now available for:

Baustelle Brecht / Working with Brecht

Fr. 23.06.2017 / 09:15 Uhr / Workshop

Workshop-Leitung und Moderation: Marc Silberman
Veranstaltungsort: Literaturforum im Brecht-Haus
Eintritt frei!

 

 

GTPR Library: Member Works

Call for Submissions: Member Works Library

The GTPR Library is a forum intended to collect books, articles and other resources related to any topic of interest to the GTPR community.

The main GTPR Bibliographies [Library > Bibliographies] are imported via Zotero. To contribute to our bibliographies, please see full instructions here.

We are also eager to to showcase works by our GTPR members on the website [Library > Member Works]. If you would like to be included in our Member Works page, please email a list of your publications (books, articles, dramas, performances, etc.) to: gtpremail@gmail.com

A full citation and cover image (if available) will be posted on the Member Works page.

Members are welcome to submit multiple works.

Tagungsbericht: „Christoph Schlingensief und die Avantgarde“

Kurzfassung des Tagungsberichtes: „Christoph Schlingensief und die Avantgarde“

Den ganzen Bericht finden Sie hier.

„Avantgarde – Marmelade“[1] – gemäß dieses Diktums setzten sich auch die Vortragenden und Mitdiskutanten aus einzelnen Repräsentanten verschiedener Fachrichtungen zusammen, deren interdisziplinäre Beiträge sich zu einem frucht-baren Gesamteindruck formierten. Eine darauf aufbauende Publikation, welche die multiperspektivischen Ansätze der weiteren Schlingensiefforschung zugänglich wird, ist bereits in Entstehung.

Über die Verzahnung der Fachbereiche der Theater- und Musikwissenschaft, der Philosophie, Soziologie und Kunstgeschichte hinaus war es eine große Bereicherung, nicht nur Zeitzeugen sondern auch geschätzte Kollegen und Weggefährten Schlingensiefs in das somit wahrlich interdisziplinäre Kolloquium aktiv miteinbinden zu können.

Vor diesem Hintergrund ergaben sich auch verschiedene Formate der Diskussion (Fachvorträge, Narrationen und Reflexionen sowie ein Filmvortrag), welche – unbeabsichtigt Schlingensiefs multimediale Arbeitsweise imitierend – danach strebten ein umfassendes Bild Schlingensiefs Bezüge zu den (historischen) Avantgarden zu zeichnen. Dazu im Folgenden ausgewählte Quintessenzen[2]:

***

1) Schlingensief hat sich während deines gesamten Schaffens sowohl direkt als mitunter auch indirekt auf wichtige Figuren der Avantgarde berufen: auf die Dadaisten, die Surrealisten, die Wiener Aktionisten und insbesondere auf Joseph Beuys. In seiner Performance Zweites Surrealistisches Manifest von André Breton – Tötet Helmut Kohl, 1996 offenbart Schlingensief jedoch einen Punkt, an dem er sich von den Surrealisten stark unterscheidet. Es handele sich hier mehr um eine besondere Verwendung von André Bretons Manifest, im Sinne eines Versuches der Strapazierfähigkeit der Grenzen von Kunst und Leben (Anna Teresa Scheer).

2) Die Berichte der Weggefährten Schlingensiefs lieferten einige relevante Hinweise zu Schlingensiefs Beziehung zu den Avantgarden: der Schauspieler Dietrich Kuhlbrodt erklärte, wie Schlingensief die „Zerstörung der normativen Schauspielleistung zugunsten von Spontaneität und Improvisation abzielte“. Schlingensief sei sogar, Jörg van der Horst zufolge, ein Avantgardist seiner Selbst: er bediene sich Elemente seiner früheren Arbeiten um sie collagengleich in neuen Werken wieder einzufügen. Im Bereich der Musik zog der Komponist Arno Waschk eine Parallele mit der Arbeit von John Cage: Schlingensief setzte sich auch intensiv mit dem Faktor Zufall auseinander, selbst wenn die beiden Künstler ihn anders in ihren Werken einsetzeten.

3) Anhand des Beispiels von Tunguska, die Kisten sind da wurde nachvollziehbar gemacht, wie Schlingensief durch die Verschmelzung von Kunst und Leben nach einer radikale Autonomie der Kunst strebte (Lore Knapp). Wenn Schlingensief die Praxis von anderen Avantgarde Künstlern wie Friedrich Kiesler wieder aufnehme, führe er dessen „Avantgarde-Tradition“ weiter: mit der Öffnung der Guckkastenbühne, der Bewegung der Zuschauer/innen und der Orientierung an Bewegungsformen der Alltags-und Trivialkultur (Teresa Kovacs). Aus der Perspektive des Re-Enactments der Wiener Aktionisten betrachtet, ist das Werk von Schlingensief besonders relevant: er befrage tatsächlich auf seine eigene Art die Geschichtlichkeit der Kunstprogramme der Neo-Avantgarden (Jasmin Degeling).

4) Durch seine innere Selbstreflexivität könne das Werk von Schlingensief eine Avantgarde Komponente beinhalten: durch seine ständige Beschäftigung mit der Grenze zwischen Kunst und Nichtkunst (Anna Tessa ZAHNER).

Hélisenne Lestringant/Ella Platschka
_________________________________________________

[1] Aus: Der Zwischenstand der Dinge, 2008
[2] Eine ausführliche Übersicht sämtlicher Beiträge ist der ungekürzten Fassung des Tagungsberichtes zu entnehmen.

CfP: Brechtian and Wagnerian Aesthetics Today

Brechtian and Wagnerian Aesthetics Today
A special session for the Modern Language Association Convention in New York City, 4-7 January 2018, sponsored by the International Brecht Society.

Scholars have long questioned the dichotomy between the Epic Theater and Gesamtkunstwerk which Brecht sets up in his first major statement on the Epic Theater, “Notes on the Opera Rise and Fall of the City of Mahagonny.” In Wagners Aktualität, Theodor W. Adorno indicated that Wagner’s Ring is in a significant sense “epic,” due to its episodic structure and preference for narrative scenes over action. More recently, Joy Calico has traced the contours of the relationship between the Epic Theater and the Gesamtkunstwerk, showing how Brecht is indebted to Wagner’s opera not just because it offers a historical and political foil, but also because it is an important forerunner to his own attempts to rethink the contract with the audience and the relationship between music and the body onstage.

Recent works by Alain Badiou, Slavoj Zizek and others have further complicated the easy identification of Wagner’s art with reactionary politics. Artists themselves have also long combined the Wagnerian with the Brechtian to more-or-less self-conscious degrees (for example, in the films of Hans-Jürgen Syberberg, the performance art of Christoph Schlingensief and Jonathan Meese, or the theater of Frank Castorf).

In our age of total digital distraction, has the dialectic of the Brechtian and Wagnerian reached an end? Are the categories of the Gesamtkunstwerk and Lehrstück, or techniques such as Verfremdung, Gestus, and historicization still coherent or useful in understanding contemporary works of art?

The International Brecht Society invites proposals on any aspect of the interplay between “Brechtian” and “Wagnerian” aesthetics – broadly conceived – in theater, music, film, television, or other media. Please submit ca. 200 word proposals and a short CV to Jack Davis (jackdavis@truman.edu) by Friday, 24 March 2017. Presenters must become MLA members by 7 April 2017.

Reminder: CfP, GSA 2017 – Panel Series: “Subjects of Performance”

Reminder: Abstracts due Monday, February 6

Call for Papers
GSA 2017, Atlanta, October 5-8
submission deadline: 6. February

Panel Series: “Subjects of Performance”

Organizers: Caroline Weist (University of Richmond) and Sara Jackson (University of Massachusetts, Amherst), via GTPR

We invite proposals for individual papers or full panels to constitute a panel series on “Subjects of Performance.”

All live performance practices, by virtue of their inherently public and embodied nature, intervene – whether intentionally or implicitly – in the conception and politics of identity. Research in historical and contemporary theater, opera, dance, and performance art reveals consistent efforts to interrogate key categories of subject status and subjectivity such as nationality, gender, race, class, and the body. This panel series aims to explore this diverse field with particular attention to the ways in which German performances and performance practices have specifically intervened in the cultural and political production of normative and nonnormative subjects.

We invite proposals for individual papers (to be coordinated into panels) or full panels that fit within the series. Proposals can be related to any field of live performance (theater, dance, music, opera, performance art, etc.). Papers/panels may engage with areas of inquiry such as, but not limited to:

  • the production or deconstruction of normative subjects
  • the construction of certain embodied subjects as “other”
  • the status of bodies (of performers and viewers) in live performance
  • subjectivity and performance/performers
  • the reconstruction of performing subjects and subjects of performance in historiography
  • performance pedagogies that examine historical and contemporary subject formation
  • specific categories of identity politics in performance such as race, gender, ability, nationality, and class
  • research methodologies for recovering lost or erased subjects of performance

We particularly encourage proposals that interrogate the specific corporeal, spatial, temporal and material dimensions of live performance.

Send abstracts of 250w for individual papers, 500w for full panels, and a short bio by Monday, February 6 to: gtpremail@gmail.com

Please also indicate if you would be interested in serving as a panel moderator or commentator in addition to (or rather than) presenting a paper.

Working with Brecht / Baustelle Brecht

Working with Brecht / Baustelle Brecht

Workshop, Berlin 23 June 2017

The International Brecht Society is organizing in cooperation with the Literaturforum im Brecht-Haus a one-day workshop on Friday, 23 June 2017. The workshop will focus on new approaches and ideas sparked by Bertolt Brecht’s works, aiming at an international dialogue about current research projects on Brecht, the reception of his extensive oeuvre, and its (in)direct impact on contemporary art, literature, and theater. An underlying interest of the workshop concerns the the nature of changed and changing conditions in art, theater, the media, and society for our engagement with Brecht: Are his questions and answers still relevant? Considering the experiences and practices of this unique thinker, where do we find potential for or bridges to a critical discourse?

Organized by Marc Silberman (University of Wisconsin, Madison), we invite doctoral candidates, post-docs, and young scholars to respond to the interventions and challenges in Brecht’s work. Presentations should be approximately 30 minutes in length and feature explicitly their work-in-progress character and questions for discussion. Senior Brecht scholars will provide short responses to the presentations. Conference languages are both English and German.
The evening of the workshop will feature a roundtable discussion with prominent theater practitioners on the theme of “Theater nach Brecht”. Interested workshop participants may also join in an introduction to the holdings of the Brecht Archive of the Academy of Arts as well as a tour of the Brecht-Weigel apartments with Brecht’s private library (both located in the Brecht-Haus).
Workshop presenters will receive an honorarium of 150 Euros (or if additional support we have requested materializes, up to 250 Euros) to help cover travel and accommodation. Selected proceedings may be published in the Brecht Yearbook / Brecht-Jahrbuch 43 (2018).
Abstracts (one page), including brief personal details, should be sent as an email attachment by 15 March 2017 to both addresses below. Presenters will be contacted very soon after this date about the workshop program.
Contact:
Marc Silberman/ University of Wisconsin, Madison
mdsilber@wisc.edu
Christian Hippe/ Literaturforum im Brecht-Haus, Berlin
hippe@lfbrecht.de

Baustelle Brecht / Working with Brecht
Workshop, Berlin, 23. Juni 2017

Am 23. Juni 2017 richtet die International Brecht Society (IBS) in Kooperation mit dem Literaturforum im Brecht-Haus einen eintägigen Workshop zu neuen Ansätzen und Impulsen im Umgang mit dem Schaffen Bertolt Brechts aus. Ziel ist ein internationaler Austausch über laufende Forschungsarbeiten und -vorhaben zu Brecht, zur Brecht-Rezeption und zum (in)direkten Fortwirken seines Schaffens in der gegenwärtigen Kunst-, Literatur- und Theaterszene.
Ein übergreifendes Interesse des Workshops betrifft die veränderten und veränderbaren Zustände in der Kunst, im Theater, in den Medien und in der Gesellschaft für die Auseinandersetzung mit Brecht: Sind seine Fragen und Antworten noch aktuell? Wo bieten sich angesichts der Erfahrungen und der Praxis dieses einzigartigen Denkers Anschlussmöglichkeiten für einen kritischen Diskurs?
Geleitet wird der Workshop von Marc Silberman (University of Wisconsin, Madison). Angesprochen sind Doktorandinnen und Doktoranden, Postdoktoranden und Habilitierende, die sich den Interventionen und Herausforderungen im Werk Brechts verpflichtet fühlen. Die Beiträge sollen eine Länge von etwa 30 Minuten haben, den work-in-progress-Charakter offen widerspiegeln und Fragen für die Diskussion hervorheben. Vorgesehen sind kurze Respondenzen von erfahrenen Brecht-Wissenschaftlern. Tagungssprachen sind sowohl Deutsch als auch Englisch.
Am Abend des gleichen Tages ist ein prominent besetztes Rundtischgespräch zum Thema „Theater nach Brecht“ geplant. Darüber hinaus ist für interessierte Workshop-Teilnehmer eine Einführung in das Brecht-Archiv sowie eine Führung durch die Brecht-Weigel-Wohnstätten mit Brechts Handbibliothek vorgesehen.
Geladene Referenten erhalten eine Pauschalvergütung von 150 Euro, unter Vorbehalt weiterer Förderpartner bis zu 250 Euro (als Beteiligung an den Reise- und Unterbringungskosten). Eine Publikation ausgewählter Beiträge ist vorgesehen im Brecht Yearbook / Brecht-Jahrbuch 43 (2018).
Themenvorschläge (eine Seite) mit knappen Angaben zur Person bitte per Email bis zum 15.03.2017 an die unten aufgeführten Adressen. Die Auswahl der ReferentInnen erfolgt umgehend nach Einsendungsschluss.
Kontakt:
Marc Silberman/ University of Wisconsin, Madison
mdsilber@wisc.edu
Christian Hippe/ Literaturforum im Brecht-Haus, Berlin
hippe@lfbrecht.de

CfP: “Brecht in the Middle East” (MLA 2018)

Modern Language Association Convention
New York City
January 4-7, 2018

CFP: Brecht in the Middle East (Sponsored by the International Brecht Society, www.brechtsociety.org)

This panel seeks to examine and discuss the legacy of Bertolt Brecht in the Middle East. What are specificities in the translation, appropriation, and staging of Brecht’s work? How did dramatists introduce, implement, adopt and transform Brechtian dramaturgical concepts in relation to existing theatrical practices and traditions? How did dramatists draw on Brecht to develop new theatrical forms while addressing and responding to national issues, politics, and histories? How did Brecht’s theory and practice of theater translate into the multi-lingual, multi-ethnic, multi-religious, transcontinental, geo-political region referred to as Middle East, defined by never-ending conflict, upheaval and uprisings? What are differences, divergences, and/or intersections in the interpretation of Brecht within the Middle East? How have Brecht’s methods possibly influenced the role of theater in and against oppressive regimes?

Please submit 200-word abstracts by March 10, 2017 to Ela Gezen, egezen[at]german.umass.edu and Hatem Akil, hatem[at]akil.org. Presenters whose papers are chosen for the MLA convention must become members by April 7, 2017.

CfP: “Long Live Lenin”: Brecht and the Hundredth Anniversary of the Russian Revolution (GSA 2017)

The German Studies Association and the International Brecht Society
41st Annual conference, 5-8 October 2017, Atlanta“Long Live Lenin”: Brecht and the Hundredth Anniversary of the Russian RevolutionIn any compendium of major historical events, the Russian Revolution of 1917 figures near the top. On the occasion of its 100th anniversary, the International Brecht Society is calling for papers that connect the work of Brecht (and contemporaries on the German-language cultural left) with the Russian Revolution and its legacies. In particular, we hope for papers that explore new understandings of the Revolution and revolution generally from today’s standpoint or explore the revolutionary moment of the interwar years with attention to the full spectrum of actors from syndicalists to National Bolsheviks.Brecht’s work – plays, poetry, prose, essays – is inextricably tied to the revolutionary politics actualized by the Russian Revolution, a connection that has both exalted and freighted his work, depending on the era and audience. Today, Bernie Sanders organizes in the name of “Our Revolution,” while, like Brecht, Steven Bannon professes admiration for Lenin, “Lenin wanted to destroy the state, and that’s my goal too.” The word revolution is suited to such vicissitudes, serving, as occasion demands, as a metaphor or concept, an empty signifier or strategic judgment, a singular event or historical inevitability. Given our hundred-year conjuncture, with the destabilization of Washington’s neoliberal consensus and the accession of anti-establishment right-wing movements to state power, with dominant states hovering perilously between strong-arm dirigisme and deregulatory laissez-faire, how can we read Brecht to open up the significance of the Russian Revolution for our uncertain times? Is Lenin’s revolution only an incarnation of Fortuna’s turning wheel? Or was it a true “Radwechsel”? But then on the road from where to where? To the extent it is no longer possible to believe that Brecht’s inscription “Long Live Lenin” is invincible, does our faith in Brecht’s poetry wane with our faith in Lenin, or is the relationship between art and politics a more resistant one, one that can even reinvigorate a faith otherwise susceptible to cynicism? What does it mean to think of political events through the lens of literature or theater in distinction to historiography?

Topics might relate Brecht and his work to:
• Bolshevik east and bourgeois west
• Revolutionary violence
• Revolutionary science
• Political theology (miracles, messianism, redemption)
• State and nation
• Revolutionary propaganda and aesthetic immortality
• Conservative revolutionaries (Jünger, Niekisch, Schmitt, et al)
• Critics of Lenin on the left (Kautsky, Kollontai, Luxemburg, Pannekoek, et al)
• “die Nachgeborenen” (e.g., Peter Weiss, Heiner Müller, Volker Braun…)

Send abstracts of 250 words by 7 February 2017, to Benjamin Robinson: bbrobins[a]indiana.edu, and to Stephen Brockmann: smb[a]andrew.cmu.edu.  All presenters at the GSA conference must become GSA members by February 15, 2017: www.thegsa.edu

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