World Congress Foucault: 40 Years After New York

The Performance & Politics of Truth: Performance Studies Meets the “Art of Government”

This half-day symposium puts Foucault into contact with performance and performance theory. As Tony Fisher and Kélina Gotman observe in Foucault’s Theatres (2020), although Foucault’s work has been keenly influential for many scholars of performance, direct engagement of his work that starts with performance practice and theory has been surprisingly scant. Participants in this event will take up this challenge, asking: What would it mean to take seriously the art in Foucault’s famous analysis of the “art of government”? What does an analysis of and from performance and the performative bring to our understanding of contemporary politics of truth-telling? This symposium is part of the World Congress, Foucault: 40 Years After.

This event is made possible by the sponsorship of the Department of Performance Studies and the event co-sponsors the Center for Research & Study, Tisch School of the Arts; Center for the Study of Gender and Sexuality, and the World Congress, Foucault: 40 Years After.


2:00 pm EDT – Keynote lecture by Mark D. Jordan (Richard Reinhold Niebuhr Research Professor of Divinity, Harvard Divinity School)

Mark D. Jordan is a scholar of Christian theology, European philosophy, and gender studies. Jordan has written extensively on sexual ethics, producing books that are widely regarded as opening important new conversations. But he has also continued to explore longstanding topics at the boundaries of philosophy and Christian theology.

Jordan has received a number of grants and fellowships, including a John S. Guggenheim Memorial Foundation Fellowship, a Fulbright-Hays grant (Spain), and a Henry Luce III Fellowship in Theology. With support from the Ford Foundation, he led a seminar on public debates about religion and sexuality for rising scholars from the United States and abroad. In 2019, he was elected a Fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences.

Jordan’s many books include the landmark The Invention of Sodomy in Christian Theology (University of Chicago Press, 1997), and Convulsing Bodies: Religion and Resistance in Foucault (Stanford University Press, 2015). His most recent book is Queer Callings: Untimely Notes on Names and Desires (Fordham University Press, 2023).

4:00 pm EDT – Panel featuring:

André Lepecki (Professor of Performance Studies, NYU; and Associate Dean. Center for Research and Study, Tisch School of the Arts) André’s works and researches at the intersection of critical dance studies, curatorial practice, performance theory, contemporary dance and visual arts performance. Selected curatorial work includes Chief Curator of the festival IN TRANSIT (2008 and 2009 editions) at Haus der Kulturen der Welt, Berlin. Co-curator of the archive Dance and Visual Arts since 1960s for the exhibition MOVE: choreographing you, Hayward Gallery (2010). Curator of the lecture series Points of Convergence: performance and visual arts (2014) and Off-Hinge Off Center: alternative histories of performance, for the Museum of Modern Art of Warsaw (2014 and 2015). Also for MoMA-Warsaw he curated the series Performance in the Museum (2015). He also curated the project “The Future of Disappearance” for Sydney Biennial 2016, and co-curated with Adrian Heathfield the symposium Afterlives of Performance, at FiAFF and MoMA 2015.

Ann Pellegrini (Professor of Performance Studies & Social and Cultural Analysis, NYU) Ann is Professor of Performance Studies & Social and Cultural Analysis at New York University, and a psychoanalyst in private practice. They are founding co-editor, with José Muñoz, of the Sexual Cultures series (NYU Press), which Ann now co-edits with Tav Nyong’o and Joshua Chambers-Letson. Ann writes and teaches on such topics as the queer possibilities of psychoanalysis; gender and performance; and religion, sexuality, and affect in U.S. public life. Their most recent book is Gender Without Identity (Unconscious in Translation Press, 2023), co-authored with Avgi Saketopoulou.

Karen Shimakawa (Associate Professor of Performance Studies, NYU; and Co-Associate Dean of Faculty, Tisch School of the Arts) Karen is the author of National Abjection: The Asian American Body Onstage (2003) and co-editor of Orientations: Mapping Studies in the Asian Diaspora (2001) with Kandice Chuh.  Her research and teaching focus on critical race theory, law and performance, and Asian American performance.  She is currently researching a project on the political and ethical performativity of discomfort.

Reception to follow.




May 03 2024

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