Skip to main content Skip to navigation

Theatre & Performance Studies News

In Memoriam - Professor Jim Davis

Prof Jim DavisIt is with a very heavy heart that we write to let you know that Professor Jim Davis passed away on Saturday 4th November following a stroke. Everyone who had the pleasure of encountering Jim will appreciate that this is a huge loss for his family, friends, colleagues, collaborators and the wider research community. He was a fantastic scholar and unwavering champion for the discipline and theatre historiography. He was such an important part of the Theatre and Performance family at the University of Warwick and will be missed for his leadership, mentorship, friendship and unfailing sense of fun and mischief.

Jim Davis joined Warwick in 2004 as Head of Department (2004-2009) after eighteen years teaching Theatre Studies at the University of New South Wales in Sydney, where he was latterly Head of the School of Theatre, Film and Dance. In Australia he was also President of the Australasian Drama Studies Association and member of the Board of Studies of the National Institute of Dramatic Art. Prior to leaving for Australia he spent ten years teaching in London at what is now Roehampton University. He co-organised many conferences including for the International Federation of Theatre Research (IFTR) in New South Wales and at Warwick. He convened Historiography Working Groups for both IFTR and for TaPRA. He served as an editor for the journal Nineteenth Century Theatre and Film.

He published widely and with considerable critical acclaim in the area of nineteenth-century British theatre. His most recent bookComic Acting and Portraiture in Late-Georgian and Regency England (2015) won the TaPRA David Bradby Prize for Research in International Theatre and Performance in 2017 and was shortlisted for the 2015 TLA George Freedley Memorial Award. His other publications include Theatre & Entertainment (2016), Dickensian Dramas: Plays from Charles Dickens Volume II (2017) and European Theatre Performance Practice Vol 3 1750-1900 (editor, 2014). He was also joint author of a study of London theatre audiences in the nineteenth century Reflecting the Audience: London 1840-1880 (2001), which was awarded the 2001 Theatre Book Prize. He contributed numerous chapters including essays on nineteenth-century acting to the Cambridge History of British Theatre and on audiences to the Cambridge Companion to Victorian and Edwardian Theatre. He also published many articles in Theatre Journal, Theatre Survey, Theatre Notebook, Essays in Theatre, Themes in Drama, New Theatre Quarterly, Nineteenth Century Theatre, Theatre Research International and The Dickensian. He was also responsible for many of the theatrical entries in The Oxford Readers' Companion to Dickens and contributed to the Oxford Encyclopaedia of Theatre and Performance, The Cambridge Encyclopaedia of Stage Actors and Acting and the New Dictionary of National Biography. For several years he wrote an annual review of publications on nineteenth-century English Drama and Theatre for The Year's Work in English Studies.

There will be an event to celebrate Jim’s life and work on 6 January 2024 12pm-4pm in the Studios in the Faculty of Arts Building on the University of Warwick's campus. Anyone is welcome (colleagues, friends, alumni etc). This will be a hybrid event, so if you cannot attend in person, but would like to join us online, that's also possible. Please RSVP to Dr David Coates - D.J.Coates@warwick.ac.uk

Select tags to filter on

Performance and Politics on the New Silk Roads - Updated Schedule

The Summer School of the Institute of Advanced Studies at the University of Warwick

Performance and Politics on the New Silk Roads

Venice June 27 – July 1 2022

Mon 27 Jun 2022, 14:55 | Tags: Dr Milija Gluhovic

Social Movements, Performance and Democratic Practices (Indo-Canadian Dialogue): A Conference

Shastri-Indo Canadian Institute Golden Jubilee Online Conference

Social Movements, Performance and Democratic Practices (Indo-Canadian Dialogue)

Collaboration between: School of Arts and Aesthetics, Jawaharlal Nehru University, Department of Theatre, University of Ottawa, Theatre and Performance Studies, University of Warwick

The last decade has seen the rise of a range of social and political movements across the globe that have challenged the existing boundaries and imaginations of political and legal articulation of rights and justice, and notions of development. At the heart of these developments has been the interlinked phenomenon of populism and performative paradigm of politics that is based on a complex relationship between digital presence and bodies physically assembling in space. Taking forward the earlier collaborative projects between the universities, namely, the Gendered Citizenship: Manifestations and Performance and Cultures of the Left: Manifestations and Performance, the present conference foregrounds theatrical/performance exchanges and the need for cross-cultural dialogue and theorisation in re-examining populism. Opening up a dialogue on the under-explored Indian-Canadian experience, the conference seeks to explore the challenges to the practices of democracy and the potential of performance to offer alternative ways of reorganisation of the world.

The performance studies framework of the conference provides an interdisciplinary exploration of cross-cultural patterns of performance and the performative nature of political dissent, bringing together seemingly diverging experiential realms. It brings together the popular cultural performances and the practices of assembling and choreographing of bodies in the streets as well as in digital space. It also offers a lens to understand what might not otherwise be deemed as public displays, whether it be dissent and protests or ways of care of self and others as vulnerable bodies or not deemed to be able-bodied to articulate politics by the mainstream. The contemporary context of Covid19 pandemic has further brought into relief the specific challenges to understand the performative paradigm of politics. The conference takes the intense moment of pandemic looking both synchronically and diachronically into the practices of democracy, and what past experiences might have to offer to the languages and gestures of democratic practices in the contemporary. In doing so, the conference will foreground an aesthetic of resistance not only as a reactive practice, but as a way to sustain articulation of rights and the politics of inclusion, equality, care for the commons and social justice.

Click the link above to see the event's schedule.

RSVP for link: parameswaranameet@gmail.com


Theatre and Performance Studies Staff Launch 5 New Publications

On Wednesday 14th October 2020 Theatre and Performance Studies hosted a book launch from 4.30pm-6pm

During this session we celebrated the fact that researchers in Theatre and Performance Studies at Warwick will have published five monographs in the six months from July 2020:

Nicholas Drofiak - Irusan: or, Canting for Architects, gta Verlag / eth Zürich

Milija Gluhovic - Theory for Theatre Studies: Memory, Bloomsbury

Nadine Holdsworth - English Theatre and Social Abjection: A Divided Nation, Palgrave

Silvija Jestrovic - Performances of Authorial Presence and Absence: The Author Dies Hard, Palgrave

Nicolas Whybrow - Contemporary Art Biennials in Europe: the work of Art in the Complex City, Bloomsbury

Each author gave brief introduction to their book outlining the things that inspired them and the central arguments they make. There was time to ask questions and to raise a virtual glass to this achievement.


Call for papers: Cultures of the Left in the Age of Right-Wing Populism - Manifestations and Performances - Keynote Speaker: Professor Chantal Mouffe

Monday 15th- Wednesday 17th April 2019

Warwick University in Venice

Palazzo Pesaro Papafava

Keynote Speaker: Professor Chantal Mouffe

This event is the culmination of a substantial period of research funded by the British Academy Partnership and Mobility grant (2016-19) that brought together an interdisciplinary group of scholars from Warwick University (UK) and Jawaharlal Nehru University (India) as well as researchers, artists and activists from other European and overseas institutions and places. We are asking how could both the historical legacy of the Left and its current manifestations and performances contribute to formulating an aesthetic of resistance not only as a reactive practice, but as a way to sustain the politics of inclusion, equality, care for the commons and social justice? The concept, coined by playwright Peter Weiss against the backdrop of raising fascism in the 1930s—asserts that art and culture, by formulating an aesthetic of resistance, are the means of finding new modes of political action and new forms of social understanding. The urgency of this project is to explore the politics and aesthetics of these forms as means of dissent, but even more importantly, as strategies of sustaining the progressive political agenda both against the backdrop of the alarmingly rising Right and on its own term.


Older news