"Becoming Columbia: Academic Freedom in a Post 9/11 Society" Presentation tonight

11:07 PM / Posted by Ashley /

First presentation of "Becoming Columbia" tonight. It went well considering we're just starting Phase 2 of the project. I have posted some pictures from the presentation on the project's blog. www.academicfreedomtheatreproject.blogspot.com . I guess this is the first time I have mentioned the "Academic Freedom" theatre project on this blog. It definitely won't be the last. To make a long story short, I'm working with a fantastic group of actor/writers on developing a documentary theatre piece on academic freedom. We're questioning the definition of academic freedom and bringing to light incidents at Columbia, NYU and Pace where issues of "academic freedom" and "free speech" have come to light. Although we have been working since January and have already presented 15 minute segments (next presentation coming up in May), we have a long journey ahead of us. It's a very exciting project and everyone is looking forward to pressing on. I'm also in the process of writing a supporting "artistic statement" to hand in as part as my MA presentation... which basically analyzes the material using performance studies theory. Basically, I'm looking forward to not having to approach it as an academic piece, and rather just a script and a play that will open up discourse on this topic in both non-academic AND academic circles. After all, as I've learned from one of my informants, "Academic Freedom is Free Speech in the University and what is happening in the University represents what's happening in the society at large". Eventually, I look forward to returning to the hundred or so pages of testimony that we have to write an ethnography for academic circles etc. However, for the next few months the focus will be on making this an accessible theatre piece.

The Academic Freedom blog is easily accessible through the "About Me" section of this blog.

Woow... I wrote a lot on this topic. I'm very happy about it. Documentary Theatre is what I've always wanted to do and working with a fantastic group is very rewarding!

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