Call for Papers: Special Joint Issue of Theatre Research International and Theatre Survey

29 August, 2013

The 2008 worldwide economic crisis brought scholars of theatre and performance to re-examine how neoliberalism, economic nomadism, and transnationalism affect artistic practices. Trans as a prefix connotes directional movement  “across, to or on the farther side of, beyond, over” (OED), but it can also signify the flexibility and multiplicity of the movement. When applied to theatre and performance, the prefix can be used to describe geographical and material movements (such as tours and festivals) as well as the movements of experience and praxis (such as collaborations and intercultural performances). With the special joint issue of Theatre Research International and Theatre Survey,the editors aim to further the discussion on how theatre and performance intersect with transnationalism and economy. The editors invite essays that investigate how the recent economic developments have profoundly reoriented theatre within the broad framework of transnationalism. The essays should also explore how the economic impact is being experienced, understood, and represented by the many different constituencies involved. Subjects and questions essays might address include:

  • Successful cultural exchanges or transfers, or anywhere the unsuccessful transfers across cultural and geopolitical boundaries created unintentional positive or negative consequences.
  • Transfers sponsored by or involving the State: What roles do official geopolitical entities/governments play or not play in the transnational movement of performance? What impact do non-state actors, like NGOs, have, especially as States concede more and more cultural humanitarian functions to NGOs? What are the histories of such practices?
  • How do the communities formed in the transnational flow of culture, performance practices, and performers create non-national, imagined communities? Do such experiences emphasize the "trans-" over the "national" in such formulations?
  • How can we investigate and understand the audience experience in the context of the transnational? How do such performances define the spectator, as well as prioritize certain spectatorial experiences over others?
  • Are there emerging scholarly methods or approaches that are the most useful tools for discussing the growing traditions of transnational theatre and performance?

 Please submit full articles (4,000-10,000 words) in electronic format and include a brief abstract of the essay (250 words) by using the online submission link available on the Theatre Survey web page (at and indicate on the cover letter that it's for the joint special issue. Be sure to read and follow the “Submission Guidelines.”  Inquiries can be sent to Charlotte Canning (TRI) at or Esther Kim Lee at (TS) . The editors reserve the right to determine in which journal the accepted article appears.

Deadline:   December 1, 2013.

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