CFP for Routledge Companion to Performance and Medicine (Deadline for abstracts: Monday 15 February 2021)

Editors: Alex Mermikides, Guildhall School of Music and Drama, UK, & Gianna Bouchard, University of Birmingham, UK
We invite proposals for this edited collection, under contract with Routledge for publication in 2024, which address the proliferation of practices that bridge performance and medicine in the contemporary moment, and which come from different perspectives. This scope includes: medicine and illness as the subject of drama and plays; the performativity of illness and the medical encounter; the roles and choreographies of the clinic; the use of theatrical techniques, such as simulation and role-play, in medical training; and, modes of performance engaged in public health campaigns, health education projects and in health-related activism. The book will encompass some of these diverse practices and discourses that emerge at the interface between medicine and performance, with a particular emphasis on practices of performance. In other words, how medicine is experienced in and through performance, on the stage and in the everyday, and how performance is made in response to medicine, as exploration, resistance and critique. Medicine and performance are understood here as equally valid epistemologies and sets of practices that intersect and overlap in different ways: medicine can be a form of performance and performance can operate as a sort of medicine – for better or for worse. The book regards the conjunction of medical science and performance as particularly rich ground for interdisciplinarity, enabling debate and dialogue around prescient issues such as subjectivity, identity, embodiment, health and illness, often in the face of complex and troubling bio-ethical dilemmas raised by medical technologies and developments.
The book will be international in scope and focus mainly on the contemporary period, given the richness of the present time in relation to the subject. But it will give due attention to the complexity of the histories of this interface, particularly in order to contextualise the current state of play. It will be organised thematically to loosely follow a medical journey, from a patient’s symptoms and their lived experience or the performativity of illness, to diagnosis and the performance of medicine as the patient is medicalized, through to treatment and recuperation, the ethics and effects of these encounters and practices, and finally to various medical futures, in terms of experiments, limit cases and new horizons.
We also aim to include perspectives and contributors from beyond the field of theatre and performance studies, for example from medical sociology and ethnography, medical history, philosophers of biopower and biopolitics, medical practice and educators The format of contributions can include more traditional academic and artist essays (6000-words), alongside shorter case studies, artist’s pages and ‘snapshots’ of practice.

Indicative content might include:
 How illness is performed on stage and off
 The interface of performance and medicine at particular historical moments
 Ideas of hygiene, epidemic and contagion, medicalization as reflected in performance practices
 Practices of medicine, such as medical institutions, encounters, imaging, technologies, roles, drugs, transplants, care-bots, prosthetics and healing animals, as understood through performance.

 The performativity of biocitizenship, self-help/self-medicalization
 Social & public responses to illness, health and wellbeing through theatre and performance
 Theatre and the ethics of medical cure and healthcare
 Biomedical experiments in and through performance

Please submit an abstract of up to 400 words and a brief bio of 200 words by Monday 15 February 2021 to Alex Mermikides ( and Gianna Bouchard
( Complete first drafts will be due in the summer of 2021, with further editorial processes to be decided. We would be happy to discuss the scope and aims of the project in more detail prior to submission of an abstract.

Request for Proposals: Wellcome’s Mental Health Active Ingredients 2021

[Shared with permission from the Wellcome Trust.

Wellcome is delighted to announce the launch of our Active Ingredients 2021 Request for Proposals. Starting with anxiety and depression in young people, Wellcome is determined to transform how we understand, fund and address mental health problems by 2030. Our vision is a world in which no one is held back by mental health problems.

This commission will be our second exploring ‘Active Ingredients’ – the aspects of interventions that really make a difference to prevent, treat and manage anxiety and/or depression in young people (aged 14-24) worldwide.

In 2020, 30 research teams reviewed the evidence for 26 Active Ingredients they deemed most important. The Active Ingredients reviewed were diverse, spanning from the cellular to the societal; the selected findings are available here.  

Now we seek to commission up to 20 teams to review ONE Active Ingredient not included in those reviewed in the 2020 commission. Our intention is to commission at least five from low- and middle-income countries. The commission will be undertaken between June and November 2021.

Integrating the perspectives of young people with lived experience will be key. And so long as one team member has a broadly defined mental health science background, applications from any global location, sector and career stage are encouraged.

For full details:

Vacancy: PhD (4 yrs) in African Studies with focus on Kenya & either Nigeria or Liberia, University of Bayreuth, Germany

The University of Bayreuth is a research-oriented university with internationally competitive, interdisciplinary focus areas in research and teaching. The Africa Multiple Cluster of Excellence at the University of Bayreuth is funded by the Excellence Strategy of the German Federal and State Governments. The Cluster aims to figure out how to reconfigure African Studies. As part of this mission, the interdisciplinary project “African Knowledges and the History Publication since the 1970s,” which makes up one of the Cluster’s Junior Research Groups (JRG), is looking to appoint a doctoral student eager to apply decolonial and intersectional approaches to studying academic publishing, especially its place in shaping
knowledge production and transfer processes.

To suggest an alternative understanding of knowledge production than that typically espoused by academia and publishing industries, and to work against the reproduction of only a narrow slither of knowledge (typically from the Global North) the JRG will implement the use of “publication” in the broadest sense – to refer to historical knowledge being brought to the
public in multiple forms. This reflects the Cluster’s understanding of learning as going beyond formal educational settings such as schools or universities. With this conceptualisation in mind, it will/seeks to theorise the contributions of African and Africa-based scholars to the production
of historical knowledge about Africa. This will include examining dissertations, journal publications, literature but crucially also non-textual histories such as historical documentaries, television shows, and art at and around four institutions in Liberia, Nigeria, Kenya and South
Africa. In doing so, it approaches African and Africa-based knowledges in their multiplicity – as institutional, but also as individual and intergenerational.
Therefore, this particular project will centre the individual African scholar (a citizen of an African nation) as history “publisher.” This includes taking into account the impacts of transnational im/mobility on his/her/their ability to acquire, process, (re-)produced and disseminate knowledge. The aim of this project will be to develop an understanding of the
kinds of contributions made by professional historians representing a mix of ethnicities, races, genders, sexual orientations and religious backgrounds to African historiography, and to be more specific, to our understanding of the human condition. It will draw examples from scholars attached to Moi University (Kenya) and at least one other institution (e.g. University
of Lagos, Nigeria, or University of Liberia), tracing the various forms of history production they were involved in, examining changes and continuities in time and place. An elevated understanding of Swahili will be required, as well as an interest in digital humanities. English is the working language of the Cluster.
Tags: the localisation of knowledge, “bushfalling,” repatriation, “brain-drain/-gain”, North-South exchanges & collaboration.
Your profile: MA in social anthropology, sociology, literature or related fields required.

Please send application materials (Letter of motivation, full CV, 1- to 2-page research statement) to Dr. Cassandra Mark-Thiesen at by 15 February 2021. Job starting date:
1 July 2021. Questions regarding the position should also be directed to the email address above.

CFP: Medical Humanities and English Studies, Special Issue of Nordic Journal of English Studies (Abstract due 1 March 2020)

CFP: Medical Humanities and English Studies, Special Issue of Nordic Journal of English Studies

Medical (or health) humanities engages with questions about medicine and health from a variety of perspectives including anthropology, literature, language, psychology, sociology and the arts. The perspectives of these disciplines are increasingly informing medical education, ethics and practice. In the Nordic countries, various medical humanities initiatives have been created. These include dedicated centres, networks, courses and academic positions. In this issue, we aim to represent the rich ways in which English studies can contribute to the study of physical and mental health. We are open to all essays in the fields of English studies, such as literature, linguistics, pedagogy and cultural studies. We particularly encourage submissions from scholars with affiliation to Nordic institutions.

Sample topics:
1. The use of historical and contemporary corpora to study representations of physical and mental health, treatment, and illness experience
2. Metaphor and other rhetorical devices depicting physical/mental health, treatment and illness experience in medial, literature and culture
3. New sources in English studies for the medical humanities
4. Literary and cultural representations of physical/mental health, treatment and illness experience
5. Literary and linguistic methods and medical humanities
6. English studies and medical humanities in education

Abstracts due: 1 March 2021
Article submission: 1 September 2021
Publication: 2022

Editors: Virginia Langum and Terry Walker

Please send submissions to and

Life of Breath: Inspire/Expire’s website is live!

On behalf of the SEAMHH symposium team: Prof Nolwazi Mkhwanazi | Dr Carla Tsampiras | Charlotte Visagie

We are opening the symposium today with a live panel from 13h00 to 14h30 (SAST). The panel is called Breathe and the speakers are Antonia Pont (Deakin University), Gcobani Qambela (University of Johannesburg), and Jess Auerbach (University of the North-West). Please click on the link below to register for this event.

Please feel free to share the attached poster with all your networks.

Thank you for being an integral part of this journey.