5-8 June 2014

The 2014 Annual and Board Meeting of Consortium of Humanities Centers and Institutes (CHCI)–Performative Humanities

The Humanities are performed not only in lectures, texts, seminars, and classrooms, but also in theatres, concerts, festivals, electronic and networked media, and other sites of intellectual and cultural activity and exchange. But it might also be said that the Humanities are ‘performed’ in a wider field that encompasses social struggles, the machinations and mediated rhetoric of politics, in hospital emergency rooms and police stations, or in global financial markets: places in which subject-object relationships dissolve into one another, or where artistic practices become a kind of performed hermeneutics.

Proudly hosted by the Research Institute for the Humanities at The Chinese University of Hong Kong, the first CHCI Annual Meeting to be held in Asia with the theme “Performative Humanities” will explore these emerging issues, the ways in which they are transforming scholarly practice and the landscape of the Humanities, and their regional/global inflections.

Our program will feature leading scholars and filmmaker — including a talk by world-renowned Director Tsai Ming-liang — organizational leaders from Asia and beyond, workshops, and opportunities for stimulating interaction with peers from CHCI’s increasingly global membership, including meetings of our member groups and Networks. The city of Hong Kong and the New Territories, with their complex social and cultural histories, will themselves feature in the program in the form of historic meeting venues, culinary experiences, musical performances, poetry readings, and opportunities to engage with the sights and sounds of this incredible city.

In addition, a full morning will be devoted to presentations by scholars from five continents who are participating in CHCI’s Humanities for the Environment and Religion, Secularism, and Political Belonging projects. Generously funded by a major, multi-year grant from the A.W. Mellon Foundation, these pilot projects are part of a developing program that will demonstrate the ways in which we might leverage the collective strength of CHCI’s international networks to explore exciting new forms of multi-institutional collaboration. Our over-arching goal in this project is to create models for future CHCI member-driven programs, and we will be devoting time to the work of our project groups in all upcoming Annual Meetings through the life of the grant.