Mental Health Support for Students and Staff

Suzi Lewis and Rupert Dannreuther have completed the QMUL-organised Mental Health First Aid training recently. They are now Mental Health First Aiders for the School and can help you find support.

During office hours they can be contacted in cases of mental health emergencies, whether these involve students or staff. Outside office hours please use the QM emergency number (0207 882 3333), or call 999.

Rupert and Suzi have been trained to listen non-judgementally, recognise warning signs of crisis and mental health conditions, and know about and can advise on professional help within Queen Mary, and where it is available from other providers. Their training can also help them recognise situations where someone may be in immediate danger when we should call 999 or 0207 882 3333 on campus.

Suzi and Rupert can be contacted during the SED Admin Office opening hours (Monday to Friday, 9am to 1pm, and 2pm to 5pm) as follows:

Rupert x8910, email; Suzi x8560, email

Here’s a reminder of the sources of help for students and staff at Queen Mary:

1. Advice and Counselling Service (ACS): Offers frontline advice and counselling services to students and staff.

2. Disability and Dyslexia Service (DDS): Offers support for all students with disabilities, specific learning difficulties and diagnosed mental health issues.

  • Opening hours: 10-4pm
  • Email:
  • Call: +44 (0) 20 7882 2756

3. For QMUL staff (and their friends and family) only:

  • Workplace Options: A confidential phone helpline and online services who can organise counselling, give advice on where to get help and support.
  • Opening hours: 24/7
  • Call: 0800 243 458 (username and password not required)
  • Email:
  • Website: (username: queenmary and password: employee is required).


3 QMUL Drama Festivals: Plunge, IPP Festival & Peopling the Palaces

We have a smorgasbord of fresh new talent and experienced industry professionals coming up in these 3 festival in Spring-Summer 2018 at Queen Mary University of London.

Plunge Festival | 16-18 May 2018

As the graduating students of Queen Mary University of London prepare to depart campus and join the outside world. Plunge Festival is the final showing of work, featuring a rich variety of performance, installation, durational and site-specific projects.

See the full programme


IPP Festival | 19-20 May 2018

IPP festival of MA and MSc performances, taking place over this coming weekend (19-20 May 2018). The festival will conclude with drinks in the foyer outside FADS (Arts Two) after the last performance on the Sunday. It would be wonderful to see you there.

Link for booking:

Please also note that Conall Borowski’s performance (Sunday, 4am in Lock Keepers) needs to be booked by email


Peopling the Palaces Festival | 10-17 June 2018

We’ve got an incredible week of events lined up, including film screenings, discussions, interventions and performances.

The eclectic programme will showcase work from a range of academics, artists, current students and recent Queen Mary graduates.

Event Round Up: Remembering Natural Historian James Petiver (1665–1718)

Thursday 26 April 2018

This day meeting at the Linnean Society in Burlington House, Piccadilly marked the tercentenary of the death of James Petiver FRS, an important but often overlooked professional apothecary and compulsive natural historian in 18th-century London.

Petiver made significant contributions to multiple fields of natural history, above all botany and entomology. An assiduous correspondent and collector, he successfully cultivated sources of natural historical intelligence and material from the Americas to the East Indies.

On the 300th anniversary of his death, the meeting set out to remember James Petiver:

  • as a practising natural historian of substantial abilities and merit
  • as a collector and cataloguer of natural historical specimens with enduring significance
  • as a writer of both manuscript correspondence and published natural historical texts
  • as an apothecary whose professional and private scientific interests mutually informed each other
  • as a social networker both within London and across the globe
  • as an historical figure whose legacy has been contested and which is ripe for reconsideration

Speakers from universities and the museum sector assessed Petiver’s life and legacy by deploying a range of historical and scientific disciplinary perspectives. Topics addressed by the presentations included Petiver’s medical practice, his abilities and significance as a natural historian, his relationships with mariners and merchants (including slave-traders), and his innovative attempts to reach new audiences through book publication. The meeting was also privileged to welcome a direct descendent of James Petiver’s sister, Jane.The event was organised by Dr Richard Coulton (QMUL) and Dr Charlie Jarvis (Natural History Museum). Research presented at the meeting is due to be published in a forthcoming special issue of Notes and Records of the Royal Society (spring 2020).

Find out more about James Petiver in Richard’s blog post for the Royal Society

Download the full programme and abstracts

Watch podcasts from the event below…

Listen to new documentary about the Kuikuro people in Brazil on BBC iPlayer Now

Yesterday BBC World Service made available the radio programme tracing a day in Takumã Kuikuro’s life in the Ipatse Village, home of the Kuikuro people in the Xingu region.

The show was recorded by Mark Rickards during a research trip to Xingu in May 2017 with Paul Heritage and Jerry Brotton last year as part of People’s Palace Projects’ indigenous artistic residency programme funded by the Arts and Humanities Research Council, Newton Fund and Global Challenges Research Fund.

PPP is core funded as a National Portfolio Organisation of Arts Council England and by QMUL.

Listen to the documentary on iPlayer

Tate Exchange: Producing Memory: Maps, Materials, Belongings – Full Programme

Join us for provocative discussions, displays, workshops and screenings exploring how memory is produced in relation to material, objects and places

Join artists and researchers from Queen Mary University of London as we think together about the role of objects in the production, conservation and recollection of our individual memories, and those of our communities. A particular focus will be migrant and refugee art, and the challenges of producing and conserving a home and identity in circumstances of displacement.

Explore questions such as what does the ‘making’ in placemaking actually involve? What is the role of sensuality in the making of memories? How can digital technologies of mass production coexist with artisanal modes of making, and what is their relation to the production of cultural heritage?

Drop in to explore installations and exhibitions which will be on display daily or join us for a series of events and activities over our five day residency at Tate Exchange.

Displays (open every day):

  • Recordings from the Xingu

Enter our oca and embark on a journey to the Ipatse Village, home of the Kuikuro indigenous people in the Xingu region of Brazil. See photographs and listen to ambisonic sound recordings of the community’s daily life and traditions, and watch a video fly-through of scan data from around the Ipatse village, produced by Factum Foundation. The display will include a Virtual Reality installation by Brazilian coder Clelio de Paula about his residency in the Xingu (Sunday only, from 1-5pm).

  • Alda Terracciano’s Zelige Door on Golborne Road

Drop in and experience this interactive, multisensory installation which explores various aspects of Moroccan heritage and culture, each requiring a different sense to be experienced. It uses Augmented Reality and technologies related to the senses, to construct a living museum of cultural memories that reflects both the challenges of gentrification, and communal visions of a utopian space within the city.

  • Globe: Here Be Dragons and Fertig

Globe, on display in Tate Exchange, is a copper sphere housing four cameras. Artist Janetka Platun rolled Globe through the streets of East London recording journeys and conversations with the public about home and migration, territory and boundaries. The footage inspired two films: Here Be Dragons (27 mins) and Fertig (6 mins), which will be screened on a loop in the space.

  • Ink drawings by Sophie Herxheimer

Explore a display of ink drawings by artist Sophie Herxheimer which document the experiences of refugees.

Screenings, discussion and workshops

Add your story to Alda Terracciano’s evolving work on London Memory Routes.

Explore the theme of belonging through conversation and activities with artist Janetka Platun.

Join artist Sophie Herxheimer for a story collecting workshop and celebrate the new issue of Wasafiri Magazine with an evening of live literature.

Focusing on the needs of young people, join us for discussions and workshops exploring how spaces for participation and creativity can be produced.

Drop in for a map-making workshop inspired by the maps created by refugees to navigate their environments.

Come along to a screening of this powerful documentary about young Afghan refugees in Greece who transform discarded lifeboats and lifejackets into bags.

Drop in for a day of events exploring the Kuikuro indigenous people’s project to record and preserve the cultural heritage of their village in the Mato Grosso region of Brazil.

Show and Tell @ QMUL

A new and exciting series of talks for school and college students hosted by the School of English and Drama at Queen Mary University of London.

Show and Tell brings together influential academic teaching staff and industry professionals to deliver engaging and accessible talks for young people interested in working in the arts and possibly studying humanities subjects at university. Queen Mary staff working in a range of disciplines will share their cutting-edge research in short, thought-provoking presentations, and they will be joined by alumni offering insights into the work they do now in jobs across the creative sector.

Much like a TED Talk, these events are designed to be as entertaining as they are informative: they will provide a unique experience for school and college students to learn about the research being produced in universities and the careers graduates pursue after their studies.

Over the course of one evening, students can expect to hear from four speakers working in university disciplines including English, Drama, History, and Geography, and from industries such as journalism, theatre, fashion, and museums and galleries. They will also have the chance to network and meet the speakers and their peers over refreshments at a reception where they can discuss the evening’s talks, ask more questions, and find out about the journeys that current and former students have made to university and the world of work.

Show and Tell is primarily aimed at students aged 16-18 who are currently studying at A Level or equivalent at schools, sixth forms, and colleges, but we would welcome GCSE students too. This is a widening participation project and we hope it will encourage students who come from backgrounds that are underrepresented in higher education to think of applying to study arts and humanities degrees at Queen Mary and other Russell Group universities.  

We are keen to hear the views of teachers so that we can make this project as effective as it can possibly be. Please help us make Show and Tell a success by getting in touch and telling us what you think makes university outreach events work for you and your students. You can tell us what you think by completing our questionnaire here:

If you are student who would like to attend, or an alumnus who would like to speak at a Show and Tell event, please also contact us to find out more.

You can register your interest by emailing 

Call for Papers: Theatricality, Performance, and the State – 7-8 June 2018

Call for Papers: Theatricality, Performance, and the State – Queen Mary 7-8 June

“’The State must wither away.” Who says that? The State…’ He assumes a cunning, furtive expression, stands in front of the chair in which I am sitting – he is impersonating ‘the State’ – and says with a sly, sidelong glance at an imaginary interlocutor: ‘ I know I ought to wither away.’

Benjamin with Brecht, 22 June, 1938

“In order to work,” Samir Amin remarks, “capitalism requires the intervention of a collective authority representing capital as a whole. Therefore, the state cannot be separated from capitalism.” While seemingly self-evident, this insight sits at odds with a tendency in theatre and performance studies and in political theory towards what Mitchell Dean and Kaspar Villadsen, following Foucault, have diagnosed as ‘state-phobia’ (2016). In this framework, the state figures as an outmoded analytical category, to be replaced by neoliberal market forces and other de-centred analytics of power. Thus, theatre and performance – as well as the ‘creative economies’ more broadly – come to be evoked as either unwittingly complicit in the retraction of the state from governance and welfare (Bishop, 2012), or conversely held up as either instantiations of civil society (Jackson, 2011) or as an oppositional public sphere that has the potential to escape the state’s long arm (Balme, 2014).


While these interventions all offer useful insights into performance’s relationship to neoliberal governance models, the recurring oversight of the role of the state in its imbrication with both performance and discourses of theatricality runs the risk of eliding this relationship altogether. Yet, since Plato at least, the dangers and uses of theatre to real or idealised states has been a recurring feature in philosophical, governmental and political discourses. Moving beyond the focus on ‘anti-theatrical’ prejudice (Barish, 1981) which often informs the analysis of these discourses, what else might be uncovered through reflecting on the usefulness of theatre and performance for articulations of theories of statehood? Additionally, as posited by Amin, if the state cannot be separated from capitalism, what might be the value of discussing performance and theatre through (re)considering the state as central to the relationship between theatre and capitalism? Conversely, how might theories of performance and theatricality allow for a renewed understanding of the state’s position in globalized capitalism? Following on from this, how might reading the globalised economy alongside the ‘planetary extension of the state’ (Lefebvre, 1975) expand understandings of theatre’s political function across regional sites? How do states participate in the performance of the “world-configuring function,” (Balibar) of borders, especially considering the living legacies of colonialism and decolonization and the contemporary prevalence of geopolitical isolationism and border regimes? Can the state continue to be thought of a site of progressive struggle?

This conference aims to address an epistemological lacuna by bringing the modern state back to centre stage in thinking about and through theatre, theatricality and performance. We invite scholars to reflect on how the state limits, organizes, supports, and develops theatre and performance, but also on how theatricality and performance, as conceptual models, offer productive ways to think and understand the modern state and its apparatuses. We encourage a wide array of theoretical and empirical approaches to this subject and invite varied disciplinary modes including history and historiography, labour studies, geography, political economy, philosophy, literary and cultural theory and theatre and performance studies.

Suggested topics can include:

  • The state as censor / the state as defender of freedom of speech
  • The state’s active role in the development and regulation of theatre institutions and organizations
  • The state’s performance of itself (as military, as territory, as police, as justice, as ruler)
  • Theatre and sovereignty
  • Gendered, racialized, and other forms of state violence
  • Statelessness and its performances
  • The dialectic of nation and state
  • The performative desire for a state in histories of decolonization
  • States’ instrumentalisation of reproductive labour
  • Riots, strikes and other modes of collective organizing against the state’s legitimacy
  • The borders of the modern state
  • Absolutism’s legacies/ Absolutism’s others


Confirmed keynote speaker Dr. Tony Fisher, title TBC

Tony Fisher is Reader in Theatre and Philosophy, at the Royal Central School of Speech and Drama, and its associate director of research. His monograph, Theatre and Governance in Britain, 1500-1900: Democracy, Disorder and the State was published in 2017 by Cambridge University Press. He is also co-editor (with Eve Katsouraki) of Performing Antagonism: Theatre, Performance and Radical Democracy (Palgrave Macmillan, 2017) which examines the theory of agonism in relation to political performance. He is currently co-editing two further volumes, Theatre, Performance, Foucault! with Kélina Gotman (Kings) for Manchester University Press; and – also with Eve Katsouraki – Beyond Failure: New Essays on the Cultural History of Failure in Theatre and Performance for Routledge. Tony has published essays on theatre, politics, and philosophy in a number of journals, including Performance Philosophy Journal, Cultural Critique, Performance Research, and Continental Philosophy Review.

The convenors welcome proposals for traditional papers of 20 minutes in length, practice research demonstrations, panels and performances . Please email all abstracts (no more than 300 words in length), an additional few sentences of biographical information and details of the audio-visual technology you will need to make your presentation to Faisal Hamadah ( or Caoimhe Mader-Mcguinness ( The deadline for the submission of proposals is Monday 30th April 2018.

RIFT Theatre’s Void – call for participants in audience research project

17 and 18 March 2018

  • ​​How can audiences contribute to the future of theatre?
  • How should new technologies be used to shape the way theatre appears and feels for audiences?

If you’re a theatre-goer who is interested in how audiences might play a part in the future development of the form, then we would like to invite you to participate in a project run jointly by Queen Mary University of London and RIFT theatre company. We are looking for 20 audience members to take part in a study of immersive theatre experience centred on RIFT’s VOID, a performance for a solo spectator commissioned for this year’s Vault festival.


What will it involve

We are looking for 20 audience members to participate in piece of immersive theatre for a solo spectator. You will receive a free ticket for the performance, and a £10 theatre voucher. In return we ask that you agree to some limited video and data recording of your experience, and a post-performance interview with a member of Queen Mary’s research team. Following the performance, you will also receive a copy of the recordings as a unique record of your experience.

If you would like to be involved, please email your name and contact details to: stating your preference for attending a performance on either 17th or 18th March. As the performance can only accommodate one spectator at a time, there are a variety of slots available between 18.00-20.00 on Saturday 17th March and between 18.00-21.15 on Sunday 18th March. If you have a particular preference, please let us know, and we will do our best to accommodate you.

Please be aware that some of the performance includes accounts of consent issues and sexual trauma.


How long will it take

The performance lasts thirty minutes, and each interview will take no longer than twenty minutes.


Will my responses be confidential 

The interviews will contribute to a research project funded by the Arts an Humanities Research Council; this process has been scrutinised by QMUL’s ethics committee, and all details will be fully anonymised in any public or academic material. You will be free to withdraw if you wish to.

4 QMUL Staff and Alumni Artists to See at Steakhouse Festival 2018

We’re clearly biased but would love to see our students, staff and friends at Steakhouse Live 2018.

Steakhouse Festival of Live Art & Performance | 24 Feb | 3pm – 10pm @ Rich Mix + 25 Feb | Midday – 9pm @ Toynbee Studios

‘Ferocious feminism, dirty desire, queer culture and resistance: Steakhouse Live are pleased to announce the programme for their 2018 Festival, taking place at Rich Mix and Toynbee Studies on the 24th & 25th of February.

Steakhouse Live is one of the few DIY platforms for radical performance practices in the UK today. Back with a force, their 5th festival edition will feature 20 live performances from international and UK based artists with work that cuts across theatre, performance art, visual art, cabaret, dance and all that’s in between.

Performances include Queen Mary alumni Oozing Gloop, Edythe Woolley and current tutors Eirini Kartsaki and Daniel Oliver.’


1. Daniel Oliver / Chiperlatartaparty

Happening Now in the Future. Don’t eat the sausages.

2. Eirini Kartsaki / Ladder

Eirini will have sex with a ladder and give birth to plywood.

3. Oozing Gloop / The Gloopshow Episode 1

A 45 minute stream of consciousness: a love song and saga of a green gal, a scarlet lady and their boyfriend; the revolution.


4. Edythe Woolley / FISHY

This is a performance looking around plastic pollution in the ocean and the plastic pollution in our bodies.

See the full programme and book online here

#MeetSED: Professor Patrick Flanery – Director of Creative Writing

Professor Patrick Flanery

Internationally acclaimed author Patrick Flanery has joined the School of English and Drama as QMUL’s first Professor of Creative Writing. We caught up with him to find out how he develops creativity in his students, plans for his fourth novel, and his first impressions of QMUL.

news image

You are QMUL’s first Professor of Creative Writing, can you tell us more about this role?

I was appointed earlier this year to lead the new Creative Writing Pathway in English. In September, twenty-three first-year students arrived as the inaugural cohort on the English with Creative Writing degree, and we hope those numbers will grow in coming years. These are very bright and engaged students who already seem to be cohering as a group and it’s exciting to see the work they’re producing, even at this early stage. I’m working now on planning the second and third years of the pathway in finer detail, and also building a series of events with visiting writers that will be open to people across the university and to the public. On 15 December, acclaimed American essayist John D’Agata, who runs the University of Iowa’s renowned Nonfiction Writing Program, will be with us for a public reading and Q&A, and next spring we have other visiting writer events planned that we’ll be advertising soon.

Later this academic year we will be making another appointment in Creative Writing, looking specifically for a published poet to expand our areas of expertise. With the recent agreement between QMUL and Arts Council England, the return to the university of the international literary magazine Wasafiri (under the leadership of its founding editor, Professor Susheila Nasta, and her team), the recent appointment of acclaimed playwright Mojisola Adebayo to a post in Drama, and with the launch of the QMUL Arts and Culture strategy initiative led by my colleague Professor Andrea Brady, it feels like an exciting time to be joining. The university is already the locus of a diverse array of cultural practices, and we can continue to develop these and other activities, including the formal academic work of teaching, as well as projects that draw in the wider community. I’m hoping we can also set up a student branch of English PEN at QMUL, and would be happy to hear from any students—whether in the School of English and Drama or in other departments—who might be interested in getting involved.

English with Creative Writing is a new pathway available to students in the English Department. It sounds really exciting. Can you tell us about what you have planned?

There is clearly a hunger among undergraduates in English (and I know in other departments, too) not just to find creative outlets, but to think about how their creative impulses can be directed and refined. In the first year, students on the pathway experiment with a variety of forms (poetry, drama for stage and screen, prose fiction, and creative non-fiction). As they continue in their degree they will hone those skills and begin to specialize in a couple of areas, culminating with the opportunity to write a creative dissertation in their third year. Alongside the Creative Writing syllabus, they take a range of modules in English that work in concert to develop their sense of the long history of literatures in English, and to equip them with the critical and theoretical tools that will make them better readers and better writers.

How do you develop creativity in your students?

That’s the big question, isn’t it? It’s fair to say that some students come with an already quite assured sense of their own voices—even as first-year undergraduates—while others arrive with really powerful raw materials (in terms of life experiences, a gift for language, or a certain arresting aesthetic sensibility) but need to find ways to marshal the desire to write and the talent they have in a more considered way. In teaching writing, I keep returning to the fundamental importance of wide and deep reading: as a writer, you have to survey a broad field of what has been written and what is currently being written, and when you find work (by a particular writer, or from a particular country, or region, or even language tradition) that really inspires you, read as much of it as you can to understand what the characteristics are that make you feel such a spark of connection.

Of course, when it comes to inspiration and fostering creativity, it’s not just a matter of reading. I encourage students to look at visual art (some of my most successful doctoral supervision sessions have ended with a walk through an exhibition at Tate Modern), or, in writing poetry, to think about the ways in which music can help us understand how rhythm might change over the course of a single short work. I hope what I manage to do, with undergraduates in particular, is sketch a field of possibilities, to point in the directions where they can look for inspiration, and to demonstrate ways of nurturing and shaping one’s own creative impulses, while also insisting that you cannot wait for inspiration to arrive: creativity flourishes when it is pursued as a sustained practice, something that becomes as critical to a writer’s everyday life and sense of wellbeing as eating.

What projects are you working on at the moment?

I’m finishing revisions on a novel, which will be my fourth, that explores the experiences of a group of people caught up in the Communist witch hunts of the 1950s in Hollywood. It’s told from the perspective of a politically engaged screenwriter who is in a clandestine relationship with a closeted gay actor. I’m also at work on a creative non-fiction project that combines memoir and other forms of life writing with critical readings of literature, film, and television.

What were you doing before joining QMUL in September?

For the three years prior to joining QMUL I was Professor of Creative Writing at the University of Reading, where I taught undergraduate modules, as well as supervising an amazingly talented doctoral student who has now transferred to Queen Mary to finish her degree with me; she’s writing a ground-breaking novel about transnational British-Latin American experience, and I predict great things for her. Previously I have been a full-time writer, a part-time lecturer at Sheffield, a PhD student at Oxford, and an executive in the film industry in New York.

How would you describe Queen Mary based on your first few months here?

I’m a Londoner by choice (as I was, two decades ago, a New Yorker by choice), and it’s stimulating to be back in a city university, with students who are either lifelong Londoners, or who have also elected to come here. In getting to know my colleagues in the School of English and Drama, I’ve been struck by two things in particular: the refreshing way in which they approach their work with a sense both of passion and absolute seriousness, and the various means by which a sense of political engagement, of responding to the changing world around us, is reflected in their research and teaching. The SED is also exceptionally well run—its administrative team is the best I have encountered anywhere, and as if that weren’t enough, people are also genuinely friendly, which makes a huge difference. Looking beyond the SED to the Faculty and the university more broadly, I’m excited by the range and depth of scholarly excellence here, which has the potential to inspire and intersect with creative work in interesting ways, and by the global outlook of the university as a whole.

What are you reading at the moment?

I always have a few books on the go. I’m reading Thomas Mann’s The Magic Mountain for the first time, as well as the Argentinian writer César Aira’s most recently translated book, The Lime Tree. In preparation for her upcoming lecture at the Centre for the History of the Emotions, and as part of the research for my nonfiction project, I’m reading Sianne Ngai’s fascinating study of affect, Ugly Feelings.

What do you enjoy doing outside of work?

The curious thing about writing is that it’s hard to see where work ends and life outside of work begins. But when I force myself to disengage a little, I enjoy running and going for long walks in South London, where I live. And since my first degree was in film and television production at NYU, I try to keep up with what’s new and interesting in those areas—an almost impossible (but pleasurable) task given how much is now being produced.


Patrick is the author of the novels Absolution (2012), Fallen Land (2013), and I Am No One (2016).  To find out more about his work, visit:

Recent vacancies advertised on the HR website include a Lecturer in Creative Writing (part-time). For more information, see

Post originally posted on the QMUL Connected Staff Intranet:

Mojisola Adebayo Newsflash for Spring 2018

Mojisola has successfully completed her PhD entitled Afriquia Theatre: Creating Black Queer Ubuntu Through Performance supervised by Dr Catherine Silverstone with Dr Caoimhe McAvinchey of QMUL SED and is now a permanent lecturer in the department.

To read more about Afriquia Theatre see Mojisola’s chapter ‘Everything you Know About Queerness You Learned From Blackness: ‘Introducing the Afriquia Theatre of Black Dykes, Crips, Kids and all their Kin’ in the groundbreaking new anthology released this month: Sista! An Anthology of writing by and about Same Gender Loving Women of African / Caribbean descent with a UK Connection edited by Phyll Opoku-Gyimah, Rikki Beadle-Blair and John R. Gordon, published by Team Angelica.

New project: Stars

Mojisola Adebayo has completed writing the first draft of her new play STARS with support from Arts Council England, idle women and QMUL. STARS is a new play and concept album for the stage performed by one actor with a live DJ and animation that tells the story of an old lady who travels into outer space… in search of her own orgasm. The play poetically explores the power and politics of pleasure for women, girls and intersex people. It questions why millions of people are unable to reach the heights of sexual pleasure as a result of sexual trauma, genital mutilation, traditional harmful practices and surgical interventions that continue to this day on every inhabited continent. STARS poetically and dramatically connects the theme of female pleasure with space travel. Here is a draft of the script. The show will be created in collaboration with a team of artists, produced and published in full in London, 2018-20. Watch this space! –

An extract of STARS appears in a new edited anthology

Liberating the Canon: An Anthology of Innovative Literature, edited by Dostoyevsky Wannabe and edited by Isabel Waidner. Details

If you missed her talk on Afriquia Theatre at Quorum in January, you can hear her present and share extracts from her Afriquia plays at the following events:

  • Queer at Kings, University of London, 8 February Info
  • Queerying Space: Transnational Perspectives at Oxford University, 28 February Info
  • And if you are really keen, Mojisola is also speaking as a Visiting Artist at University of Wisconsin, Madison 21 February Info




Artist Callout: 10 Minute Ideas for ‘Theatre in the Dark’ Scratch Night

Deadline – Monday 8 January 2018

To mark the 20th anniversary of Battersea Arts Centre’s seminal Playing in the Dark season in 1998 and the launch of a new book Theatre in the Dark by Martin Welton and Adam Alston, BAC and Queen Mary University of London are presenting a Theatre in the Dark week in February 2018.

As part of this week of events there will be an ‘in the dark’ curated Scratch Night on Friday 9th February at 7.30pm.

We are currently looking for submissions of ideas for that Scratch Night. There will be 4 artists or companies selected to perform.

Scratch is about testing new ideas in front of an audience in order to get feedback, to see what works and what doesn’t. It is about taking risks in a supportive and positive atmosphere and learning through doing.

So we are looking for new ideas that need to be tested rather than pre-exiting work or polished pieces.

The Parameters
• The pieces should be no more than 10 minutes
• The Scratch Night will take place in the Council Chamber – more information on the space and the set up below.
• The Scratches should require limited tech.
• We will provide a blacked out space, a PA and a basic lighting rig.
• The artists chosen will have half an hour to have a technical rehearsal during the afternoon before the Scratch Night.
• It is an ‘in the dark’ Scratch Night so ideas should explore darkness or gloom although it doesn’t have to be dark from beginning to end.
• Selected artists/companies will be expected to think through the health and safety implications of their idea.

The Space
The Council Chamber is a room which is about 16 metres long and 10 metres wide with a high ceiling.

The space will be set up in a simple, 3-sided thrust formation with seats on the flat – no rake. There will be a decent-sized stage area – exact dimensions TBC.

There will be a fee of £500 for each artist/company asked to do a Scratch.

Application process
• Fill in an application form by visiting
• You can submit your ideas in writing and/or video
• Deadline: 10am Monday 8th January
• Applicants will be informed no later than Wednesday 11th January.

Photo Special: The Great Yiddish Parade – Part of Being Human Festival

Our very own Dr Nadia Valman was a key organiser of the ‘The Great Yiddish Parade’, which took place on 19 November 2017.

The event was a re-enactment of an 1889 protest march by Jewish immigrants in Victorian Whitechapel. That year, strikes were erupting all over the East End, and demonstrators demanded better conditions and wages for all East End workers. 

The Great Yiddish Parade of 1889 used the medium of music, song and oratory to build solidarity and attract others to their cause. Their protest songs, in Yiddish — the language of Jewish immigrants — were recreated by a band of klezmer musicians and singers. At Mile End Waste, a strip of green space in Whitechapel where political rallies were held in the nineteenth century, speakers addressed the audience of participants and locals with oratory taken from East End political activists. In the photos below see east London’s forgotten heritage of protest being brought to life in poetry and song.

Thanks to the Being Human festival of the Humanties and QMUL Centre for Public Engagement. Photographs by Ralph Hodgson.


Nadia Valman and Julie Begum in Aldgate

Singer Brendan McGeever with the Great Yiddish Parade song sheet

Vivi Lachs and Julie Begum in Whitechapel

Lucie Glasheen gives song sheets to passersby

The parade passes Aldgate East station

The parade at Middlesex Street

Watching the parade in Whitechapel High Street

Passersby read the song sheet

A shopkeeper watches as the parade passes

Musical director Sarha Moore and musicians

The parade in Whitechapel

Watching the parade in Whitechapel Road

The parade approaches Mile End Waste

Oratory by the statue of William Booth, Mile End Waste

Carrie Hamilton as anarchist orator Emma Goldman

Julie Begum as investigative journalist Olive Christian Malvery

Rabbi Janet Burden of Ealing Liberal Synagogue

Organisers Nadia Valman and Vivi Lachs at Mile End Waste

Applications for Leverhulme Trust’s Early Career Fellowship Scheme Open for 2018

Early career researchers seeking support for their application to the Leverhulme Trust’s Early Career Fellowship scheme are invited to get in contact with us from now [deadline 12 noon, 12 January 2018].

The School of English and Drama invites early career researchers seeking support for their application to the Leverhulme Trust’s Early Career Fellowship Scheme to submit to us:

  • An outline research proposal including
    • title
    • abstract (250 words)
    • statement of past and current research (250 words)
    • a two-page (A4) project outline
  • Up to one page of major publications (organised as published, submitted, and in preparation)
  • An academic CV of not more than 2 pages to demonstrate your research stature.

Please send the above to Dr Huw Marsh, Research Manager, at: by no later than 12 noon on Friday 12 January 2018.

Full scheme details including eligibility criteria can be found on the Leverhulme Trust’s website:

All outline proposals will be considered by a School committee and applicants will be notified of the shortlisting outcome in the week of Monday 22 January 2018. Shortlisted candidates will be put forward for approval by the Humanities and Social Sciences Faculty Executive, who will report their decisions by early February. The final deadline for submission of approved applications is 1 March by 4pm.

The School recommends that applicants make clear the following in applications (CVs and proposals):

  • the strength of your academic record (e.g. classifications, awards, time taken to complete your PhD, etc.)
  • the strength of your research record (e.g. publications; presentations; research leadership; if you make practice as research, indicate how it is research; etc.)
  • what research you will publish/disseminate through the fellowship
  • the importance of doing your fellowship in the School of English and Drama at QMUL (e.g. synergies with staff and research centres)
  • your proposal’s importance, originality, methods, critical contexts, resources, structure and outputs.

People’s Palace Projects – October Events

Efêmera play – Southwark Playhouse

In Brazil and the UK violence against women and girls is on the rise; recent research suggests that the majority of Brazilian migrant women have experienced gender-based violence. Efêmera introduces us to two women with a story to tell. They may have the courage to share it with you, they may not. A powerful and delicate piece about how to hold on when life falls apart.

Based on interviews conducted by researchers from the Department of Geography at King’s College London (and previously at Queen Mary University of London), this is a verbatim piece with a twist. It will be performed in London as part of the 10th anniversary of CASA Festival at the Southwark Playhouse and in Rio de Janeiro.

The research is directed by Professor Cathy McIlwaine and co-directed by Professor Paul Heritage in partnership with People’s Palace Projects and the Latin American Women’s Rights Service (LAWRS) and funded by the Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC) under the Newton Fund. You can read further about the research here.

Efêmera will be presented as a scratch performance as part of CASA Festival 2017.

Tickets can be bought at Southwark Playhouse website.

Cast & creative team: Gaël Le Cornec, Angie Peña Arenas and Rosie MacPherson

Efemera (as part of Casa Festival 2017)
9.30pm on Thursday and Friday 5th and 6th October 20175pm on Saturday 7th October 2017.

Southwark Playhouse, 77-85 Newington Causeway, London SE1 6BD

Note: There will be a discussion panel hosted by Cathy Mcllwaine after the 5pm showing on the 7th.


No Feedback free public performances

No Feedback is a theatrical event highlighting the gentle pull of discrimination that tears at the fabric of everyday life. Offering an insight into human nature, it is set against the backdrop of catastrophes both historic and contemporary. By taking Genocide Watch’s ground-breaking research as the backbone of the production, No Feedback intelligently and sensitively asks audiences to consider their own place on the spectrum of how we relate to one another.

Come and play your part in this new kind of theatre experience at two public performances happening in October. Booking is essential.

This project is produced in partnership between People’s Palace Projects and No Feedback Theatre Company.

17th October , 7.30pm –  Mulberry and Bigland Green Centre

15 Richard Street

Commercial Road


E1 2JP




24th October, 7pm – Studio 3 Arts Boundary Road



IG11 7JR




Discussion Exploring Cultural Value in the Creative Economy


Peoples Palace Projects will be hosting a research discussion exploring cultural value and the creative economy as part of the AHRC-funded Relative Values project. It will be an opportunity to meet Prof. Leandro Valiati, one of Brazil’s leading cultural economists, who takes up a post as Visiting Professor in the Economy of Culture at QMUL from beginning of December.


Monday, October 30th, 10.00, at Queen Mary University Mile End Campus, Bancroft Building, room 3.40. 

Please reserve your place here. 


The conversation will focus on Relative Values, an AHRC-funded research project led by Prof. Paul Heritage in partnership with Prof. Valiati. Bringing together academic and non-academic partners, the research asks how we can measure and strengthen practices and policies that maximise the social and economic value of the arts to individuals and society, particularly in peripheral urban environments. The project aims to contribute to understandings about cultural value and to enable the four participating UK and Brazilian arts organisations to collaborate on testing effective ways to show how the arts can be incubators for creative economy initiatives that develop resilient, low-stress communities.


About Professor Valiati

Leandro Valiati has been responsible for setting up research Observatories of the Creative Economy across five different regions in Brazil, developing a series of indicators on a range of economic development and social welfare criteria. His experience includes teaching, consultancy and research in Economy of Culture in national and international institutions, including Brazil’s Ministry of Culture, UNESCO, Brazil’s Economics and Statistics Foundation, the Organisation of Ibero-American States (OEI)  and the University of Valencia in Spain. Leandro is the leading researcher of the Creative and Cultural Economy Study Centre at the Federal University of Rio Grande do Sul and member of the National Council for Scientific and Technological Development (CNPq).  He is collaborating with Paul Heritage at People’s Palace Projects on two current research projects.


From 1 December 2017, Leandro will take up an Honorary Visiting Professorship at Queen Mary University of London for 2 years, in addition to honorary posts at the Sorbonne and other European institutions.