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Theatre History Focus Group-ATHE- Call for Papers

Posted By Charlotte McIvor, National University of Ireland, Galway, Saturday, September 20, 2014

Theatre History Focus Group (THFG) Sessions

Association for Theatre in Higher Education (ATHE) Conference

July 30-August 2, 2015—Fairmont The Queen Elizabeth Hotel-

Montréal, Québec, Canada


Submission Deadlines: October 17th (individual papers only; send to Charlotte McIvor at; November 1st (complete panels; go to ATHE at

ATHE 2015: Je me souviens

(I Remember)


The Theatre History Focus Group (THFG) of the Association for Theatre in Higher Education (ATHE) invites proposals for next year’s conference to be held in

Montréal, Québec, Canada at the Fairmont The Queen Elizabeth Hotel from July 30-August 2, 2015.  Our 2015 conference theme, “Je me souviens (I remember),” actively invites participants to consider the relationship between memory and theatre as archive, practice and process.  If practicing theatre historiography implicitly demands we remain constantly vigilant to how we tell stories through our research, ATHE 2015 challenges us to put this awareness at the center of our approaches to this conference theme.  THFG invites you to consider this invitation not only through the case studies you propose, but through an even more pronounced engagement with historiography as a practice of remembering through research that not only reconstructs the past and historicizes the present but forces a reckoning the future of our field. 


As we work towards excavating “the silences, the unsaid, the gestures, the sub-text, the dangers, the misunderstandings, the non-discursive in the ‘in-between’ terrain between cultures, countries, and constituencies in Canada and beyond,” we invite proposals for panels and roundtables, as well as sessions that challenge traditional session formats through performance, workshops or other actions. 


Proposals might engage:

v Theatre historiography as a practice of critical memory

v The historical role of performance in the construction and transmission of memory

v Changing critical methodologies in the field

v Canon formation and minority voices in the theatre

v The contested nature of language as in the English appropriation of the French Canadian slogan, ‘Je me souviens

v Limits of the archive and/or the repertoire

v Geography, memory and indigeneity in performance

v Pedagogy and training as historical practice

v The translation of our memories of theatre history as subject into our own classroom practices

v Digital humanities and the theatre history archive/classroom

v Engagement with how history/memory is incorporated into contemporary production practice


We especially invite submissions incorporating approaches that emphasize ‘inter/trans-national and inter/trans-cultural exchanges in performance texts, process, or production.’ THFG remains committed to giving voice to a diversity of methodological approaches and geographical emphases.


Tips for submitting proposals:

1.     Complete proposals for sessions (with all presenters assembled) should be submitted directly to ATHE through the website at The deadline for all proposals is November 1, 2014. Please forward a copy of your proposal to THFG Chair and Conference Planner, Charlotte McIvor at

2.     If you would like assistance in panel coordination, please use the THFG web forum ( or Facebook group (ATHE Theatre History Focus Group), or email individual paper proposals to the conference planner at no later than Friday, October 17, 2014 (note that the latter option does not guarantee submission/acceptance).  The Conference Planner will work to facilitate linkages with other submitted papers, but this submission does not guarantee being matched with a panel.

3.     Submissions may be either discipline specific or multidisciplinary. In general, we are interested in panel topics that address the history of theatrical practice, historiography, or the relation of theatre to history in a larger sense. We encourage proposals that include both senior and junior scholars, as well as graduate students. A senior scholar could well serve as a respondent. We also encourage collaborations with other Focus Groups and Committees of ATHE to develop dynamic multidisciplinary sessions. Please see below for specific rules and guidelines for multidisciplinary proposals.


For Theatre History-Specific Proposals If your session addresses primarily theatre history, then choose “Single Focus Group” in the first selection box of the online proposal form. For Session Sponsor, select number 18, “(TH) Theatre History.”  When the selection process begins, all THFG-targeted proposals will be sent to the THFG conference planner. The THFG Executive Committee will rank the proposals, and the conference committee will use those rankings to make final programming decisions. It is not necessary to contact the conference planner before submitting a THFG proposal, but please do forward a copy of your proposal to the conference planner once you have submitted it (see above, Also feel free to contact the conference planner if you have any problems or concerns or if you are curious as to whether or not your proposal is appropriate for THFG.


For Multi-Disciplinary (MD) Proposals: If your session addresses theatre history but is also appropriate for another Focus Group or Committee, consider THFG as one of your target focus groups. You must select 3 targeted Focus Groups or Committees for an MD panel to be considered. To make an MD proposal you must contact the conference planners for each of the targeted Focus Groups/Committees by email before submitting online in order to receive feedback and to make sure the proposals are appropriate for each FG /Committee. If one of your targeted focus groups is not enthusiastic, it is far better to know before submission and perhaps find another FG or committee to increase its chance of being accepted (MD proposals are ranked by each of its affiliated Focus Groups). See for contact information for Focus Group conference planners and Committee chairs.


Special notes for the 2015 Conference:

A. As you assemble proposals for the website, please avoid copying and pasting material from Word to avoid electronic translation errors. Instead, save your document as rich text (.rtf) and copy/paste from Notepad (Windows) or Text Edit (Mac) into the online session proposal form (found at

B. Upon successful completion of a session proposal, the session coordinator should immediately receive a confirmation email from

C. If you plan to use PowerPoint or other projected material, you must request an LCD projector at the time of proposal. While there is a $300 fee, please note that grant requests for technology are strongly encouraged and frequently awarded.

D. It will not be possible to request specific days for presentations. If selected, your session could be scheduled on any day of the conference. Session Coordinators should ensure that all participants know that they should be available for all days of the conference.

E. Participants will be limited to a maximum of two presentations. “Presentation” refers to the act of delivering a paper, serving on a roundtable, or serving in an equivalent role in a different type of session. There is no limit to the number of sessions that a person can Chair or serve as Session Coordinator.


Session coordinators should expect to hear whether or not proposals have been accepted or rejected by mid-March, 2015.


Questions?  Contact THFG Chair/Conference Planner Charlotte McIvor at


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