Last time, we discovered that having a baby makes a woman magic and gives her special insight into the very fabric of reality. Sorry, I should have written “giving life”, not “having a baby”. This week, a call for presentations and conference papers, but only if they reinforce the organisers’ prejudices that certain very narrowly defined types of gay men and lesbians are also totally magic!
International Art English tropes in this episode of Artbollocks Theatre, rated on a scale of one to five stars
Tongue twisters *, pseudoscientific claptrap *, bad grammar, typos or misused words *, telling us what we see or think *****, spurious appeals to art history (0), art world jargon ***, pretending artists are more [superlative adjective] than people who are actually [adjective] ****, justifying nothingness or lack of work (0), [gender or sexual identity/motherhood/minority status/nationality of the artist] is magic *****, everyday object, technology or phenomenon presented as if the artist is a virtuoso for being able to use it (0), “between [random noun] and [random noun]” (0), artist is unique **, body horror ****.
Performing Identity: The Relationship between Identity and Performance in Literature, Theatre and the Performing Arts (As part of the Second Global Forum of Critical Studies organized by Euroacademia in Prague, Czech Republic)
Identity is often seen as being a controversial topic. Whether it is fictive or real, (de)politicized and/or aesthetic, gendered or engendered, identity is often seen as being a powerful political tool and an essentially social construct. It also allows individuals to define themselves. In a sense, we perform our own identities everyday – or, perhaps, we perform a wide range of different identities at any one time. We implicitly live in a society which constructs various definitive identifications, and which often sees the rigid maintenance of hierarchical systems and exclusive ideological constructions of gender, identity and sexuality, or what Judith Butler defines in her work Bodies that Matter as an ‘exclusionary matrix.’ This has often resulted in the displacement of any discursive systems which resist these exclusionary systems. This panel seeks to give voice to discursive systems which have so often been displaced by exclusionary systems of identification. The main exclusionary focus in culture and the arts has often been on the white, heterosexual and supremacist male (or female). To rectify this oversight, this panel seeks to address any works of art and culture which are directly and explicitly related to the performance of identity from a different standpoint – that is, one which is not exclusively heteronormative and heterosexual.
Let’s just recap: today we’re apparently not interested in hearing from white people, heterosexual people, men who identity as men, women who identify as women, or any combination of the aforementioned. Even if you somehow escaped this carpet bombing of almost every type of opinion as far as the eye can see and you also like to be told your point of view doesn’t matter, there’s no need to feel left out. Soon they’ll get around to excluding plenty of LGBT people too! From an event that’s more or less about LGBT people, no less. Bravo.
When you’re “giving voice”, it’s not a winner takes all proposition. The great thing about genuine free speech and expression is that there’s no need to deprive other people of theirs in order to have yours. Incidentally, excluded people and minority voices don’t need or want academics to patronisingly grant them an audience. They’re quite capable of speaking for themselves. Continue reading