This second manifesto promotes action and makes clear the vision of those interested in the relationship between the arts and society in the North of England. Further thoughts on arts, health and society.   Author(s): Clive Parkinson.   Publisher(s): Arts for Health at Manchester Metropolitan University.   Year: 2012.   Context: Arts and health.   Artform: Various.  
Performance Research journal invites artists, practitioners and theorists to submit proposals for critical articles, documents, interviews, artist’s pages or other forms of contribution that explore medical practices and histories in relation to the contexts and discourses of performance, performance-making and artwork. Proposals are invited for a sepcial issue of Performance Research on the theme of ‘On Medicine’ which will be published in August 2014. Performance Research is an independent, peer-reviewed journal published by Routledge Journals, Taylor & Francis Ltd for ARC, a division of the Centre for Performance Research Ltd, an educational charity limited by guarantee. The proposal deadline is 20 January 2014. 

The aim of this issue of Performance Research is to explore the complex and vibrant relationship between medicine and performance. Through a necessarily interdisciplinary approach, it seeks to interrogate various modes of performance practice that engage with the histories, practices and discourse of medicine. In reflecting on medical contexts and approaches, this issue will address the potential of performance to intervene in and extend vital debates around medical knowledge and practice, to enhance its understanding and to offer a site of resistance and challenge to its influence and dominance. 

There is a growing body of work emerging that is concerned with the interface between art and science, but this issue of Performance Research specifically seeks to deepen understandings about the connections, dialogues and dissonances between performance and medicine. ‘On Medicine’ will attempt to examine these points of intersection through an address to specific themes, which are: the medicalized body; biopolitics and ethics; and the histories and practices of medicine.

Key themes and questions

The Medicalized Body:

In what ways have performance practices used the medicalization of the body in order to examine subjectivity, personal agency and embodied knowledge in relation to viagra biomedicine?

How have medical practices been appropriated for performance?

In what ways have performance practices managed to challenge and resist ideologies and representations of illness and disability?

Biopolitics and Ethics:

How have artistic practices intervened in dominant ideological constructions and bio-ethical debates within the discourses of medicine and the body?

By what means does contemporary performance expose the politics of health and illness?

Histories and Practices of Medicine:

What new perspectives can be offered on the presentation and understanding of the body in performance when considered in relation to the history and practices of medicine?

What are the intersections between discourses and practices within medical and art histories, particularly in relation to the ways in which bodies have been represented and displayed?

In what ways have concerns such as subjectivity, representation, identity and body knowledge been examined through performance?

Possible topics include:

Art and illness

Autopathography and illness narratives

Wounds, injuries and scars


Histories of medical display and exhibition

Current medical practice and performance

Health, the athletic body and well-being

Medical instruments and technologies

Medicalized pain and suffering in performance

Surgery, body-alteration and -modification in performance

Healing or treating the body in or through performance

Temporalities of illness and endurance


Use of biomedical practices in art


Medical imaging and representation


Proposals: 20 January 2014

First drafts:  March 2014

Publication date: August 2014

All proposals, submissions and general enquiries should be sent direct to Rosa Bekkenkamp (

Issue-related enquiries should be directed to the issue editors:

Gianna Bouchard:

Martin O’Brien:

General Guidelines for submissions

Proposals will be accepted by e-mail (MS-Word or RTF). Proposals should not exceed one A4 side. Please DO NOT send images electronically without prior agreement.

Please note that submission of a proposal will be taken to imply that it presents original, unpublished work not under consideration for publication elsewhere. By submitting a manuscript, the author(s) agree(s) that the exclusive rights to reproduce and distribute the article have been given to Performance Research.


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