WOMENSTD 313 - Special Topics in Gender and the Humanities
Section: 001 Health, Gender, and Performance
Term: WN 2018
Subject: Women's Studies (WOMENSTD)
Department: LSA Women's Studies
Requirements & Distribution:
Lab Fee:
May be elected twice for credit.
Primary Instructor:

This course will look at contemporary uses of theatre and performance in medical and health contexts. We will investigate the use of performance among NGOs (Non-Governmental Organizations) and medical education providers, and how performance artists use art to interrogate categories of health, gender and sexuality. We will find out about new ways of conceiving arts’ power to intervene or change (post/colonial) gender, sexuality, and health paradigms. How can applied theatre add new perspectives to ongoing debates about the cultural locations of health care, theatre, and power? How can theatre address domestic violence (we’ll engage a community performance created in the Solomon Islands), center indigenous perspectives on two-spirit well-being and suicide prevention (using Turtle Island examples), offer intersectional analyses of disability’s effects on marriageability and self-determination (we’ll look at a disability-led video/theatre performance from Burkina Faso), or engage discussions of sexual health management in the U.S. and elsewhere?

The first half of the course will focus on readings about international community performance, theatre for development, and performance art. In the second half, we will engage in performance directly ourselves, and create mini-performances around campus.

This course will include three evening theatre performances at the Power Center, as well as one or two cinema visits to appropriate screenings. There is a $45 course fee that covers the price of the tickets (thanks to a collaboration with the University Musical Society.)

January 12th, Urban Bush Women (only one performance)
February 2nd: Gabriel Kahane: Book of Travelers (only one performance)
March 9th or 10th: Company Wang Ramirez: Borderline

Required Reading:
Petra Kuppers: Community Performance: An Introduction. London and New York: Routledge, 2007.
Readings provided via Canvas will include material from:
Applied Theatre: Performing Health and Wellbeing, eds Veronica Baxter and Katharine E. Low. London and New York: Bloomsbury Methuen, 2016.
Performance and the Medical Body. eds Alex Mermikides, Gianna Bouchard, London and New York: Bloomsbury Methuen, 2015.
The Oxford Handbook of Dance and Wellbeing, eds Vicky Karkou, Sue Oliver, and Sophia Lycouris, Oxford, New York: Oxford University Press, 2017.

Course Requirements:

Assessment: Weekly discussions on Canvas, mid-term take-home exam, final collaborative project/performance (with a 3-page commentary linking your performance work to course readings)

WOMENSTD 313 - Special Topics in Gender and the Humanities
Schedule Listing
001 (LEC)
M 1:30PM - 4:00PM
002 (LEC)
TuTh 4:00PM - 5:30PM
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