The performingborders research has been invited to ‘Crisis’ in Excess: Performing Europe Todayon Friday 29th April at Winchester University where I will present the work of Núria Güell with the 15-minute provocation ‘Núria Güell: Exceeding financial and identity European policies through the body of the artist’. The event is free and everybody is welcome to attend.
From the event text:
Since 2008, the term ‘crisis’ has marked the institutional, socio-political, cultural and academic landscapes of contemporary Europe. This rather malleable, ‘sticky’ term seems to operate as both the cause and the result of the pathologies of the present moment – but, ultimately, it has been voided of meaning. The discourse of ‘crisis’ is producing a limited perspective on the present, haunted by ghosts of the past or doomed to a perpetual route to nowhere. At the same time, this volatile moment of ‘crisis’ has generated a body of writing and cultural works, which are directly aiming to engage with the ‘crisis’; by such means, the ‘crisis’ is both critiqued and normalized.
In an interview (‘A precarious dialogue’ Radical Philosophy autumn 2013), Jacques Rancière has pointed out that ‘we must try to think what we ourselves mean when we use the very word “crisis”’; in this symposium, the Inside/Outside Europe Research Network aims to do that. We wish to consider the value and political purchase of the term, which we have been using constantly since the formation of our research network in 2013, by focusing particularly on the ways in which theatre and performance (as practices and studies) can undo or offer insight into the semantics of ‘crisis’. If the crisis, as Rancière proposes, ‘is an excess in the logic of the system’, how can performance exceed such excessive logics? What is the place of history and memory for approaching the ‘crisis’ and the ways in which Europe is conjured through the prism of the ‘crisis’? What can we learn from the archives of the past about the archives that are assembled in the present? Ultimately, do we still need to use the term ‘crisis’ or might it be useful to return to the writings of Walter Benjamin, who in his 1940 Theses on the Philosophy of History reminds us that ‘the “state of emergency” in which we live is not the exception but the rule’?
The event aims to offer a platform for sharing methodologies of historicizing and contesting dominant discourses around ‘crisis’, excess, pathology, emergency and ultimately the need for ‘cure’.