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Research seminar series by Professor Mark Franko

Event information

START DATE 13 September 2013
START TIME 12:00am

Middlesex University, Performing Arts Department, The Burroughs, Hendon, London, NW4 4BT

END DATE 13 September 2013
END TIME 12:00am

Prof Mark Franko requests that those attending prepare by making themselves familiar with the related reading as listed. Therefore, once you are booked on a session, we will send what we can of the preparation reading materials to assist in your engagement with these sessions.

We are delighted to present two sessions investigating research methodologies. These two seminars are part of an ongoing series of events by Dance and Performance Studies Professor, Mark Franko (Temple University, USA and Middlesex University, UK).

Places are limited, but you are invited to attend one or both sessions. The seminars will be of interest to performance and dance researchers and PG/PhD candidates.

Friday 13th Sept: 2-5pm: Foucault and Las Meninas

We explore the chapter "Las Meninas" from The Order of Things (Les mots et les choses) by Michel Foucault. What sort of methodologies does this analysis of the Velasquez painting (1636) suggest for dance and theatre studies? What concept of representation does Foucault present and why does he rely on a dramaturgical reading of the painting, and to what effect? Because this text implies opposition to Merleau-Ponty, we read an essay by Claude Lefort – also a student of Merleau-Ponty – which proposes a different way of dealing with power and representation.

Readings: Michel Foucault,  "Las Meninas" in The Order of Things.  An Archaeology of the Human Sciences  (New York: Vintage, 1973): 3-16

Claude Lefort, "The Image of the Body and Totalitarianism" in John B. Thompson, editor, The Political Forms of Modern Society. Bureaucracy, Democracy, Totalitarianism (Cambridge: Polity Press, 1986): 292-306.

Saturday, 14th Sept: 2-5pm: Derrida and Grammatology

How is Derrida's conception of writing useful for Dance Studies? We read pages 3-65 of Of Grammatology, which contains one of the only passages in his oeuvre where Derrida makes an explicit connection between writing and choreography. We also examine scholarship that comments on and/or uses Derridean principles (Brandstetter; Lepecki).

Readings: Jacques Derrida, Of Grammatology translated by Gayatri Chakravorty Spivak (Baltimore & London: Johns Hopkins University Press, 1976): 3-65.

Gabrielle Brandstetter, "Political Body Spaces in Performances of William Forsythe” in Performative Body Spaces: Corporeal Topographies in Literature, Theatre, Dance, and the Visual Arts edited by Marlius Alensleben (Amsterdam & New York: Rodopi, 2010).

André Lepecki,  "Inscribing Dance", in Of The Presence of the Body. Essays on Dance and Performance Theory edited by André Lepecki (Middletown: Wesleyan University Press, 2004): 124-139.

Mark Franko is Professor of Dance and Coordinator of Graduate Programs at Temple University (Philadelphia) and Professor of Visual and Performance Studies at Middlesex. His publications include Martha Graham in Love and War: the Life in the Work, Dance as Text: Ideologies of the Baroque Body, Dancing Modernism/Performing Politics, The Work of Dance: Labor, Movement and Identity in the 1930s, and Excursion for Miracles: Paul Sanasardo, Donya Feuer and Studio for Dance (1955-1964). He is editor of Dance Research Journal, and founding editor of the Oxford Studies in Dance Theory book series. He edited Ritual and Event: Interdisciplinary Perspectives and co-edited Acting on the Past: Historical Performance Across the Disciplines. Recipient of the 2011 Outstanding Scholarly Research in Dance from the Congress on Research in Dance, Franko’s research has been supported by the National Endowment for the Humanities, the Getty Center for Research in the Arts and Humanities. The American Council of Learned Societies, the American Philosophical Society, the Humanities Institute UC Irvine, and the National Endowment for the Arts. He has taught at Columbia University, Princeton University, Purdue University, and the University of California Santa Cruz where he is currently emeritus; he was Valeska Gert Visiting Professor of Dance and Performance at the Institut für Theaterwissenschaf,t Freie Universität Berlin, and Visiting Professor at NYU Performance Studies, Bard College, Paris 8, Université de Nice, and the Catholic University of Leuven. His books have been translated into French, Italian, and Slovenian.

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