Institute of Advanced Studies (IAS)


HYBRID: Material Selves: Gender, Health and Performance

15 June 2022–16 June 2022, 9:30 am–7:00 pm

drawing of woman with tree in head and bottle in hands

This Symposium seeks to insert embodied modes of knowledge production offered by theatre and performance into theoretical understandings of gender and health

This event is free.

Event Information

Open to







Leah Sidi and Verónica Rodríguez


IAS Common Ground
G11, Ground Floor, South Wing, Wilkins Building,
UCL, Gower St, London

At the heart of performance is a conception of life as materially embodied and enacted - a conception that it shares with both the health humanities and feminist approaches to selfhood. Introducing performance as a third term in this discussion, this Symposium seeks to insert embodied modes of knowledge production offered by theatre and performance into theoretical understandings of gender and health. It asks:

  • How does attention to physical space, matter, rhythm and temporality in performance contribute to our understanding of gender and health?
  • How have the legacies of feminist and queer performance generated new understanding of health and the body? 
  • How do feminist performance practices overlap with crip/disabled performances?

Keynotes: Anna Harpin (University of Warwick) and Katharine Low (Central School of Speech and Drama)
Conference organisersLeah Sidi (UCL) and Verónica Rodríguez (Buckinghamshire New University)


To make this event as accessible as possible, the conference will be a hybrid in-person and online event. It will take place in a wheelchair accessible venue, with regular breaks. The online stream will have live captioning.  Please ensure you register for the correct ticket, either 'in-person' or 'online' attendance: https://material-selves.eventbrite.co.uk

Registration will be at 9.30 am on Wednesday 15th, for a 10am start. The zoom link will open at 9.50am on both days. On Wednesday you are welcome to join us for self-funded dinner at a local pub after the conference. If you would like to join, please email genderhealthperformance@gmail.com so we can make sure to accommodate you.  Please also note that it will be unusually warm (for London) this week. Water will be available, but you may also wish to bring your own water bottle. 
Information for in person participants 
Registration will be at 9.30am on Wednesday 15th June. Keynotes on Wednesday and Thursday will be at 10am. The best way to get to the Common Ground is to enter UCL campus at Torrington Place. Continue through to enter the building at the South Junction. Go up the stairs or lift to the ground floor, and follow signs to the Common Ground/conference. 

Information for online participants 
Online participants should join via zoom using the details below: 
Meeting ID: 913 5386 2701 
Passcode: 436305 

Please email enquiries to: genderhealthperformance@gmail.com

Octagon Small Grants Fund

Hosted by the Centre for Health Humanities and funded by the Institute for Advanced Studies Octagon Grant fund

Main image credit: Rita Levi-Montalcini: Wellcome Collection