Dr Kélina Gotman

Reader in Theatre and Performance Studies, English Department

Dr Kélina Gotman is Reader in Theatre and Performance Studies in the English Department at King’s, and author of Choreomania: Dance and Disorder (Oxford Studies in Dance Theory, Oxford University Press, 2018, winner of the David Bradby Award for outstanding research in international theatre and performance, Theatre and Performance Research Association) and Essays on Theatre and Change: Towards a Poetics Of (Routledge, 2018), as well as co-editor of Foucault’s Theatres (Manchester University Press, 2019). She is editor of the forthcoming Theories of Performance: Critical and Primary Sources, 4 vols. (Bloomsbury, 2021) and translator of Félix Guattari’s The Anti-Oedipus Papers (Semiotexte(e)/MIT Press, 2006) as well as playwright Marie NDiaye’s The Snakes (Cue Press, 2016).

She has contributed widely to conversation in theatre, dance, performance, critical and cultural studies of science and medicine, the history of disciplines and institutions, writing, translation and critical practice, including for parallax, SubStance, Textual Practice, Choreographic Practices, Performance Research, About Performance, Comparative and Continental Philosophy, Performance Philosophy and various edited volumes. She has also collaborated widely on theatre, dance and new opera productions across Europe and North America, and consults regularly for theatre and dance companies, galleries and museums. In Summer 2019 she was Friedrich Hölderlin Guest Professor in Comparative Dramaturgy at the Institut für Theater-, Film- und Medienwissenschaft at the Goethe-Universität Frankfurt. She has also held visiting positions at Cornell University, Bard College, The Eugene Lang College for Liberal Arts at The New School, Columbia University, and The Slade School of Fine Art, UCL.

Theatre and Performance Publications


Choreomania: Dance and Disorder (Oxford Studies in Dance Theory, Oxford University Press, 2018) [monograph]

Essays on Theatre and Change: Towards a Poetics Of (Routledge, 2018) [monograph]

Foucault’s Theatres (Manchester University Press, 2019), co-editor with Tony Fisher [co-edited volume]

Theories of Performance: Critical and Primary Sources, 4 vols., editor (Bloomsbury, forthcoming 2021) [edited volume]

The Snakes, by Marie NDiaye, translator (Cue Press, 2016) [play text, with translator’s introduction]

Chapters and articles

‘Mallarmé’s “Livre”: notes towards a schizotheatre’, in Textual Practice 33.1 (2019): 175-194 [peer-reviewed article] 

‘On Medicine’, in Performance Research 23.4 (2019) [100th issue]: 118-126 [peer-reviewed article]

‘The Time of Philosophy (with Svetlana Alexievich)’, in Comparative and Continental Philosophy (online pub. July 2019) [17pp.] [peer-reviewed article]

‘On the Difficult Work of Translating Translation; or, the Monolingualism of Translation Theory. Languaging Acts in (and after) Marie NDiaye’s Les Serpents’, in Studies in Theatre and Performance (online publ. March 2019) [28pp.] [peer-reviewed article]

‘Choreic Gesture: Virtuosic Angularity, Alterkinetic Dance (on Platel’s Out of Context: For Pina)’, in Christel Stalpaert, Guy Cools and Hildegard De Vuyst, eds., The Choreopolitics of Alain Platel’s Les Ballets C de la B: Emotions, Gestures, Politics (Bloomsbury, forthcoming 2019) [chapter in book]

‘Vibrant Affiliations: Family and Society’, in A Cultural History of Tragedy, gen. ed. Rebecca Bushnell, 6 vols. Vol. 6, 1920-Present, ed. Jennifer Wallace (Bloomsbury, forthcoming 2019) [chapter in book]

‘Foucault, Oedipus, Négritude’, in Kélina Gotman and Tony Fisher, eds., Foucault’s Theatres (Manchester University Press, forthcoming 2019) [chapter in book]

‘Introduction: theatre, performance, Foucault’, with Tony Fisher, in Kélina Gotman and Tony Fisher, eds., Foucault’s Theatres (Manchester University Press, forthcoming 2019) [chapter in book]

‘Anaesthesis: Dance Marathons and the Limits of Sense’, in Eve Katsouraki and Tony Fisher, eds., Beyond Failure: New Essays on the Cultural History of Failure in Theatre and Performance (Routledge, 2018), pp. 119-145 [chapter in book]

‘Danse et désordre’, in 1518, la fièvre de la danse (Les éditions des musées de la ville de Strasbourg, 2018), pp. 115-130 [contribution to museum catalogue, in French]

‘Foucault, Aufklärung, and the Historical “Scene,”’ in parallax 24.1 (2017): 45-61 [peer-reviewed article]

‘Corpus- [corpus]: hand, handiwork, Habitat, gifts, feet, footnotes, and the “ob-scene,”’ in SubStance 143, vol. 46.2 (2017): 147-165 [peer-reviewed article]

Translatio’, in Performance Research 21.5 (2016): 17-20 [peer-reviewed article]

‘The (Spectral) Lure of the Past: Sadler’s Wells, Capital, and the Institution of Dance’, in Performance Research 20.4 (2015): 62-70 [peer-reviewed article]

‘Exceptionalism, Schizophrenia, Artaud: On Judgment’, in Performance Philosophy 1.1 (2015): 119-125 [peer-reviewed article]

‘Krono-Metre, site d’un opéra-théâtre récusant, non-lieu de la lecture, et esthétisation du sens’, in Lorna Collins and Bandy Lee, eds., Making Sense: Merging Theory and Practice (Oxford: Peter Lang), pp. 159-174 [chapter in book, in French]

‘The dancing-place: Towards a geocultural and geohistorical theory of performance space’, in Choreographic Practices 3 (2012): 7-23 [peer-reviewed article]

‘Epilepsy, Chorea and Involuntary Movements Onstage: The Politics and Aesthetics of Alterkinetic Dance’, in About Performance 11 (2012): 159-183 [peer-reviewed article]

‘It’s My Show, Or, Shut Up and Laugh: Spheres of Intimacy in the Comic Arena, How New Technologies Play Their Part in the “Live” Act’, with Sam Godin, in Judith Batalion, ed., The Laughing Stalk: Live Comedy and Its Audiences (Parlor Press, 2012), pp. 253-270 [chapter in book]

‘Chorea Minor, Chorea Major, Choreomania: Entangled Medical and Colonial Histories’, in Johannes Birringer and Josephine Fenger, eds., Tanz und WahnSinn / Dance and ChoreoMania (Henschel Verlag, 2011), pp. 83-97 [chapter in book]

‘Other Possible Worlds Onstage,’ in PAJ: A Journal of Performance and Art 96 (2010): 48-54 [review article]

‘Tango Tourism 101: A Photo-Diary, Buenos Aires’, in Conversations across the Field of Dance Studies XXIX “Dancing Economies” (2009): 18-24 [article]

Noteworthy Performances, Events and Artistic Collaborations

Matthias Sperling, The Institute of Neurochoreography – First Open Congress, Lilian Baylis Studio, Sadler’s Wells, 2 November 2018. https://www.sadlerswells.com/whats-on/2018/matthias-sperling-institute-of-neurochoreography-first-open-congress/ Semi-fictional symposium imagining an ‘institute of neurochoreography’, hosted by UK choreographer Matthias Sperling. 

The Snakes by Marie NDiaye, translated from the French by Kélina Gotman, staged reading, directed by Daniel Goldstein, The Gate Theatre, London (2016).  smooth & striated: form, hARTslane Gallery, London, UK, three-day art&theorylab, co-curator and co-producer. July 11-13 2016. https://hartslanestudiosdotorg.wordpress.com/2016/07/07/smooth-striate-d-form-july-11-13-10am-5pm/

Infancy, History and the Avant-Garde, festival, co-curator, Clapham Omnibus, 23-24 January 2015. Presented by Recreational Services / the operlab at King’s College London. A micro festival of extreme sensation, illegibility, inchoate speech, sounds, cries, screams; chaos, excess, discovery, experimentation, risk, and the flip-side: discipline, control, security, the infantilism and fascism of the police state. Also toys, props; pataphysics, dada, scatological humour; imitation, counter-imitation, mimesis; play, games; the politics of the family, resistance to capitalism’s drive towards ever-changing relationships, adaptability & rootlessness; work, sleep & sleep deprivation; cuteness; lullabies. Featuring performances and talks by Eric Wubbels, Josh Modney, Sam Pluta, Ollie Evans, Adam de la Cour, Schopenhauer, Federico Reuben, Tom Jackson, Kirstin Smith, Patrick ffrench, Matthew Fink, P.A. Skantze, Stephen Upshaw, Rocío Bolaños, Siwan Rhys, Steve Potter, Irum Fazal, Strangeface Theatre Company, Joel White, Mark Knoop, Carl Rosman, Lucy Beynon, Lisa Jeschke, Jeremy Hardingham, Huw Hallam, Efrosini Protopapa.

Propositions: after Bataille. Infancy, History & the Avant-Garde festival, Omnibus Clapham (solo speaker/performer and co-creator, with Schopenhauer) (2015)

The Spurt of Blood by Antonin Artaud. Infancy, History & the Avant-Garde festival, Omnibus Clapham (translator and director/designer) (2015)

Whiggly Kinderproducts, Whiggly Ensemble, Yinka Shonibare’s Guest Projects, London (performer) (2013)

Socialist Realism, with London Sprechchor, music by Philip Venables, LSO St. Luke’s, London (solo speaker / performer) (2013)

100 Combat Troupes: denkbild for six musicians and four actor-dancers, presented at The Village Underground, 2012, librettist, director and dramaturg, collaboration with composer Steve Potter, with musicians from The London Sinfonietta, commissioned by The London Sinfonietta Blue Touch Paper Project, funded by The Jerwood Foundation.

Paradis sur Terre by Charles L. Mee, co-produced by Witness Relocation and Compagnie Ildi! Eldi, at Les SubSistances (Lyon) and La MaMa E.T.C. (New York, NY) (translator, English to French, adapted by the company), 2010.