What role can theatre play in reimagining democracy? – Call for abstracts

How can we build and strengthen democracy through the dynamic medium of theatre? A new South African-Norwegian research project is calling for academic and creative submissions that explore this concept, to be included in an upcoming anthology.

The Building Democracy Through Theatre project is the result of a partnership between the University of the Witwatersrand’s School of Arts, the Wits Drama for Life programme and the Department of Arts and Media Studies at the Norwegian University of Science and Technology.

It aims to strengthen postgraduate education and research in applied theatre by addressing issues relating to democracy in the global north and south. The project will culminate in 2021 with the publication of an anthology of written and creative research produced by artists, teachers, researchers and postgraduate students. It will be edited by Petro Janse van Vuuren, Bjørn Rasmussen and Nondumiso Msimanga.

Contributions should use theatre as a focus of study and/or a method of inquiry, and can include reports, analyses, case studies, intervention designs, creative expressions and other formats. This includes unpublished articles of up to 6 000 words and creative research submissions such as play scripts and video documentaries, accompanied by an explanatory framing document.

The Building Democracy Through Theatre project encourages collaborative and intersectional work, across borders and cultures, that boldly interrogates how we can use theatre to reimagine democracy. Contributions should drive conversations and critically challenge post-democratic conditions in both developed and developing countries.

If you are interested in adding your voice to this valuable research project, please submit an abstract of your contribution and a brief biography by 1 September 2019, with final submissions due by 1 August 2020.

The submission form is available here.

For inquiries please contact project leaders petro.jansevanvuuren@wits.ac.za and bjorn.rasmussen@ntnu.no.