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POSTPONED: Humanities to the Rescue: Symposium | Performance, Publics, Possibility

March 28, 2020 @ 9:15 am - 5:30 pm



Humanities to the Rescue is an event series intended to bring the broader Buffalo community together to celebrate the humanities. We have been closely monitoring how current health and travel issues are evolving with regard to the Coronavirus (COVID-19). After consultation with University at Buffalo leadership and a great deal of deliberation, our proactive feeling is that the best thing we can do for our community is to limit non-essential large gatherings. As such, the UB Humanities Institute is postponing An Evening with Nick Cave (March 27) and Performance, Publics, Possibilty (a one-day symposium scheduled for March 28), with the hope of rescheduling in Spring 2021.

Should you have any questions or concerns, please do not hesitate to contact us via email at We appreciate your understanding and cooperation with these precautionary measures.


Taking as inspiration Humanities to the Rescue keynote speaker Nick Cave’s artistic-activist praxis, the “Performance, Publics, Possibility” symposium explores arts and humanities-based practices of imagining and enacting more equitable and just social formations by way of performance’s capacities to engage publics.

Please join us for a day of performances, panels, and camaraderie. Lunch included.

View/download the symposium schedule (PDF)

Confirmed participants (additional participants forthcoming):

Schedule Overview

8:30am | Registration opens | coffee and pastries

9:15am | CFA Screening Room | Welcome

9:30am-11:00am | Session 1

  • Performance Activisms | CFA Screening Room
    • Moderator: Ariel Nereson, University at Buffalo
    • “Sweat, Dance, and Labor: Second Lining in 1970s New Orleans” | Rachel Carrico, University of Florida
    • “Who Protests How?” | Susan Leigh Foster, UCLA
    • “Art and Anxiety in the Peyi Lok” | Jeanguy Saintus, founder and choreographer, Ayikodans

11:00am-11:15am | Coffee Break

11:15am-12:45pm | Session 2

  • Go Public(s): Mobilizing Performance Paths | CFA Screening Room
    • Moderator: Miriam Paeslack, University at Buffalo
    • “The Commons Experiment: Linking University and Public Through Performing Arts and Arts Criticism” | Alexandra Ripp, Five Colleges Dance Consortium
    • “Responsive Scholarship: Conversing with Nick Cave” | Claire Schneider, C.S. 1 Curatorial Projects
    • “Francophone Caribbean Theater on American Stages: A Strategic Detour” | Stéphanie Bérard, Columbia University-Paris
  • UB Art Galleries tour Sally Cook: 1960-Present | CFA Art Gallery and Atrium
    • [abridged session] 11:15am-12:00pm | exhibit tour by curator Liz Park

12:45pm-2:00pm | Lunch break with Responses to Sally Cook | CFA Atrium

  • 1:00pm-2:00pm | Responses to Sally Cook presented by the UB Arts Collaboratory

    • Cristanne Miller, Edward H. Butler Professor of English; Margaret Rhee, assistant professor, Department of Media Study; and Alison D’Amato, lecturer, Department of Theatre and Dance, who are collaborating on a dynamic program organized in response to the artist’s ongoing engagement with the poet Emily Dickinson.

2:00pm-3:30pm | Session 3

  • Climate Change and Performance: The Planet as Public (?) | CFA Screening Room
    • Moderator: David Bisaha, Binghamton University
    • “Climates of Change” | Sara Warner, Cornell University
    • “Slow Academic Travel: An Antidote to ‘Fly Over’ Scholarship in the Age of Climate Change” | Meredith Conti, University at Buffalo
    • “Raising Aniya: Art, Race, and Coming of Age on Film on the Petrochemical Gulf Coast” | John Fiege, University at Buffalo

3:30pm-4:00pm | Coffee Break

4:00pm-5:30pm | Session 4

  • Im/Possible Relations: Affect, Archive, Environment | CFA Screening Room
    • Moderator: Nicole Morris Johnson, University at Buffalo
    • “Real Tears, Fake Tears: Imagining the Feelings of Others” | Daniel Sack, UMass Amherst
    • “Documenting Performance: Queer Nuyorican Archival Poetics” | Karen Jaime, Cornell University
    • “Talking Trash on the Bay of Hann: Environmental Causes and Arts Activism in Contemporary Senegal” | Brian Valente-Quinn (U Colorado-Boulder)

Humanities to the Rescue is made possible through the generous support of the Eileen Silvers Visiting Professorship in the Arts & Humanities, the UB Creative Arts Institute Artist-in-Residence program, and the additional support of the UB Office of the Vice President for Research and Economic Development, the Humanities Institute’s Performance Research Workshop, the UB Arts Collaboratory, Melodia E. Jones Chair Jean-Jacques Thomas, the UB department of Environment and Sustainability, the UB Gender Institute, and the departments of Theatre & Dance and Romance Languages and Literatures.


March 28, 2020
9:15 am - 5:30 pm
Event Category:


Humanities Institute
Performance Research Workshop
UB Arts Collaboratory


Center for the Arts