Extended deadline for abstract submissions: Monday, January 7, 2013.

 From Page to Stage: Perspectives on Theatricality in Historical,  
Philosophical, and Literary Discourses

March 15-16, 2013
Vanderbilt University, Nashville, Tennessee

Hosted by the German Graduate Student Association in collaboration  
with the Departments of Philosophy, English, and Spanish & Portuguese

The genre of drama stands at the intersection between literature and  
theory, text and performance, page and stage. Due to the complex  
constellation in which the genre is involved, this interdisciplinary,  
intercultural conference seeks to explore multiple perspectives on  
dramatic works.

What happens when a work is spoken and performed that does not when it  
is only read, and what does the process of bringing a work to the  
stage entail? Questions of historical context and interpretation play  
a crucial role in leading up to the performance of a drama. This  
process can and does lead to diverse adaptations of the same work, and  
becomes itself a distinct means of challenging modes of  
representation. How did Georg Büchner’s fragment “Woyzeck,” for  
instance, become a theatrical piece – and one that is so often staged  
musically? What played a role in Alban Berg’s choice of atonal music?

Beyond the dramaturgical path of work to stage, the genre of drama,  
its purpose, and its performance have been informed by theory and  
philosophy at different times. Theatre, in turn, has a history of  
influencing aesthetics. Some plays perform and incorporate  
philosophical concepts, whereas others postulate concepts of their own  
by calling for a specific performance practice. Historicity is not the  
only factor involved in such exchanges; (un)timeliness plays a large  
role for works which could only have been written in their time, but  
were created in an era that was not ready to receive them. Why have  
some works been staged and acclaimed only in a later era? Why and how  
are some works so relevant as to continue to be performed today?

We would like to invite presentations in English of 20 minutes. Topics  
may include (but are not limited to):

•	Adaptations of a work to the stage
•	Works or passages that present staging challenges
•	Changes in interpretation or reception over time
•	Historic works in the present (incl. modern variations)
•	Written word vs. spoken word; e.g. subtext, importance of what is  
not said, intonation
•	The physical stage, its multiple forms, and its effects on what can  
be staged and how
•	The relationship between audience and stage
•	Cultural transfer and translations of a play
•	Politics, historical events, and theatre
•	Philosophy as informing theatre; e.g. Schiller’s reaction to Kant  
through the concept of the Pathetic and the drama
•	Theatre’s influence on aesthetics
•	Questions of representation; e.g. authority of staging, gender- 
theoretical issues, morality/ethics
•	Social function of drama and theatre
•	Theatrical concepts such as Brecht’s Verfremdungseffekt (distancing  
effect) or Artaud’s Theatre of Cruelty
•	The play as a concept; e.g. Beckett’s absurd theatre
•	Performing philosophy; e.g. the play and its staging as a  
dialectical form

We welcome submissions from all disciplines and language backgrounds.  
Please submit a 250-300 word abstract to [log in to unmask] 
  by Monday, January 7, 2013, along with the title of the paper, the  
presenter’s name and contact information, institutional and  
departmental affiliation, and any technological requests.


Mike Hiegemann, M.A.
Vanderbilt University
Department of Germanic and Slavic Languages
Email: [log in to unmask]

The German Studies Call for Papers List
Editor: Stefani Engelstein
Assistant Editor:  Olaf Schmidt
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