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Conference Announcement

Shaking the Walls – International Conference in Gdańsk (Poland) 25-26.09.2020

Call for workshops and seminars (up to 1,5h each) is open till 20th April 2020
Call for papers (15-20 minutes presentations) is open till 10th May 2020

Conference package includes:
– a congress goody bag
– artistic/visual events
– catering during coffee breaks
– lunch on both days (if needed)
– guided sightseeing tours of Gdańsk and the Gdańsk Shakespeare Theatre
– book of abstracts will be available on-line
Package does not include conference dinner on Friday (additional cost: 35€).

The Gdańsk Shakespeare Theatre is pleased to announce an open call for papers, presentations, seminars and workshops for the Shaking the Walls International Conference, which will take place at the University of Gdańsk (Poland) on 25-26.09.2020.

The Conference is the final event of 2-year artistic project by the same name: Shaking the Walls, that brings together organisations from five European countries operating in the scope of performing arts. The Gdańsk Shakespeare Theatre from Poland is the leader of the project, the partners are as follows: Cooltour – Kulturní centrum Cooltour Ostrava z.ú., from Czech Republic, RaTaTam – Reykjavik Art Group from Iceland, Parrabbola – community theatre collective from London, Great Britain and An Grianán Theatre from Letterkenny, Ireland.

Conference will take place at the Faculty of Law and Administration (University of Gdańsk)

The conference’s aim is to explore the theme of walls between people using various methodological approaches, including the following:
– sociology
– philosophy
– linguistic studies
– arts engaged in social interventions
– theatre, performing arts, literature (including Shakespeare) studies

The conference aims to address specifically the metaphor of the wall of indifference, which is perhaps the most blurred and undefined boundary separating humans in today’s world, both as individuals and social or ethnic groups. We would like to talk about ways of identifying “walls” (barriers, boundaries, problems) in different countries and subsequently, through inter-cultural creative dialog, art and education find ways of raising public awareness of the issues tackled, and reach solutions.

The range of considered issues varies from political problems, immigration, domestic violence, isolation in the society and many more, including the following:
– What types of walls have been diagnosed in different social and cultural contexts?
– How can art talk about these walls? What artistic tools may be used to tackle the issues concerned?
– What makes us choose a particular side of the wall?
– In what, socially accepted, ways can one particular point of view be supported?
– Are there any real solutions? Can “shaking the walls” be effective?
– Who should feel responsible to “shake the wall”? Academics? Artists? Politicians? Media?
– Who are the people who actually make a difference in the world-wide context?
– What are the dangers and ethical dilemmas that might be faced, when trying to shake most important walls?
– What barriers can be identified and modified by the particular works of art or theatre?
– How the divisions influence the language and social/political discourse?
– To what extent is it possible to heal the divisions through education?
– What educational tools proved to be more effective?

Conference will be divided into two groups of subjects:

First day (September 25th):  Barriers in wide social and cultural contexts.
Welcome lecture by Guy Le Jeune (Ireland)
Key note speaker: Mary Ann DeVlieg (Italy)

Second day (September 26th): Arts (theatre, performance, literature)
Key note speaker: Prof. Małgorzata Grzegorzewska (Poland)


For panel presentations – sign up here
Conference fee for panelists:
100€ (427 PLN)- rate for students, PhD students, Professors Emeriti
120€ (513 PLN) – standard rate
130€ (555 PLN) – last call rate (if the fee is not regulated on-time)

For workshops and seminars – sign up here
Please note that we support cooperation between scholars and artists. Therefore – you can run a workshop or conduct a seminar in a tandem (or trio) with an artist, that uses his/ her art to raise awareness about the walls between people, in practice. We would promote the proposals including practical rather than strictly academic approach.

Conference coordinators:
Marta Nowicka
Anna Ratkiewicz
Anna Szynkaruk-Zgirska


Shaking The Walls