CFP: Performing Plants

25 Feb CFP: Performing Plants

CFP “Performing Plants”

Editors Prudence Gibson and Catriona Sandilands

This issue of Performance Philosophy is dedicated to redefining the way plant qualities are understood and valued. It celebrates and interrogates the agency, in/inter-dependence and performing subjectivities of plants. We ask: what if plants have a unique set of existential processes, from which we are excluded? These relations between plants and environment, and plants and humans, are entangled and material. Vegetal performativity refers to the way the arts and humanities can respond to the growth patterns, time frames and responsive abilities and qualities of plants. The issue delves into discourse around how real plant entanglements and materialities may create new narratives. It provokes thought about what kinds of expressions of vegetal life can afford plants their multiple capacities without merely representing them as flat, static or inert. What kind of thinking can shift our anthropocentrism toward the experience of the plant, and toward experiencing with plants? What kind of writing, theorising, art-making and storytelling is best suited to the distributed lives of plants? To understanding the involvement of plants in the Anthropocene?

We invite proposals for papers on these, but not only these, topics:

• performance in/with botanical science

• Indigenous plant knowledges/respectful cross-cultural plant relationships

• aesthetic categories of the vegetal/vegetal aesthetics

• plant communication as performative ecology: pollination, predation, morphology, mimicry, impersonation, evolution, symbiosis, parasitism

• plant-based performance art, dance, land art, film, music, theatre

• botanical porn, drag, burlesque; plant-based ecosexual performance

• botanical decolonisation; herbaria; Wunderkammer and the paradox of collecting

• performative plant writing: narrative, poetry, nonfiction, garden writing; agri/cultural


• plants in political theatre, protest; performative botanical, forest, garden politics

• performing with/as/for plants: creating plant-based performative communities

• plants and/in performative identities: gender, class, race, sexuality, disability

• gardening, horticulture, forestry, botanical display, flower shows, floristry, flower

arranging as botanical performance

• charismatic megaflora in botanical history: performing botanical imperialism, colonialism, conservation, resistance

• monstrous plants, performing plant horror

• marine plant ecologies, “blue-green” performance

• plant restoration as performative utopia

• plants and cultural policy

Queries about suitability of topic or approach are welcome: email Prudence Gibson at or Catriona Sandilands at

About Performance Philosophy

Performance Philosophy is an emerging interdisciplinary field of thought, creative practice and scholarship, supported by an international network of over 2000 scholars and artists. As an international, peer-reviewed, open access journal, Performance Philosophy publishes articles that interrogate what this field might be, and that test the relationship between performance and philosophy in all its possible configurations, including the philosophy of performance as well as performance-as-philosophy and philosophy-as-performance.

We are interested in scholarship that draws on a broad range of philosophical traditions, concerned with any aspect of philosophy, whether from Continental or Analytic traditions or beyond, and with any discipline or definition of performance, including but not limited to drama, theatre, dance, performance art, live art, and music.


Abstracts and one-page CVs due (300 words): 30 June 2020 Papers due (6000–8000 words): 20 December 2020 Publication: October 2021


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