Performance in the Wake of the Political: Latin American Performance as Theorizations of Contemporary Politics

Gwendolen Pare
UC Irvine
Spanish and Portuguese


Participants

Yunuen Gómez Ocampo
Hispanic Languages and Literatures
UC Santa Barbara

Maria Elena Arias-Zelidon
Interdisciplinary Humanities
UC Merced

Elena Cardona
Hispanic Studies
UC Riverside

Leticia Concepción García
English
UC Santa Barbara

Iliana Cuellar
Comparative Literature
UC Riverside

Inger Flem Soto
Comparative Studies in Literature and Culture
University of Southern California

Jane Kassavin
Comparative Studies in Literature and Culture
University of Southern California

Judit Palencia Gutiérrez
Hispanic Studies
UC Riverside

Vincente Pérez
Theater, Dance, and Performance Studies
UC Berkeley

Mell Rivera Díaz
Spanish and Portuguese
UC Irvine

Jose Eduardo Valades
Critical Dance Studies
UC Riverside

Isabella Vergara
Spanish and Portuguese
UC Irvine


Recent Latin American performances, political and otherwise, confront us with a displacement of politics from institutional decline to an infectious re-routing of aesthetic and political sensibilities. Spanning intermedial horizons and short-circuiting withered channels of (political) representation, this project asks how political performance art displaces political poetics and problematizes political representation. Across academic disciplines, discourse about politics has recognized the false promise of representation. Performance is a discipline well positioned to think about what representation and what disappearance means. In fact, if one looks to Latin America, performance artists are practicing this critique and in the process, advancing their own politics in the wake of the nation-state’s and avant-garde’s politics. This research group proposes to attune academic listening to performance practices immersed in political mobilizations in Latin America in recent years as well as contaminate academic understandings of them by studying, inviting and working together with contemporary performance artists. Through a series of academic and non-academic encounters, the research group unleashes a conversation about Latin American performance in the wake of the political, and will publish its reflections in an open-access journal. These encounters will culminate in an academic/non-academic conference in May 2021 which engages different publics on UC campuses and beyond.