In his germinal essay, “Of Caravans and Carnivals: Performance Studies in Motion” Dwight Conquergood (1995) uses the compelling metaphor of a caravan to describe performance studies; a “commitment to praxis, to multiple ways of knowing that engage embodied experience with critical reflection … a caravan: a heterogeneous ensemble of ideas and methods on the move” (pp. 139–140). This expanded discussion on the relation between performance and metaphor first presented at the 2009 Qualitative Inquiry Congress asked each of the original participants to develop new metaphors for performance that open up an aspect or understanding of performance that is underdeveloped, underutilized or untapped. Key questions were explored in discussion: How are these metaphors provocative and what to they provoke? How do metaphors work in understanding performance in performance studies? What is the critical service these metaphors make in/as qualitative inquiry? How do or can these metaphors be made to work for social justice? Whose interests are served by particular metaphorical constructions? This Special Issue includes a section entitled “New Metaphors for Performance” which included the original metaphors offered by Ronald Pelias, David Hanley-Tejada, W. Benjamin Myers, Season Ellison, Lesa Lockford, Shauna MacDonald, D. Soyini Madison, and Della Pollock. The second section entitled, “Listeners/Respondents” includes generative autobiographical metaphors, from key audience members as their experiences/ responses to and in dialogue with the originating metaphors presented in the panel (Christopher N. Poulos, John T. Warren, Nicole Defenbaugh, Tami Spry, Karin Schlücker, Claudio Moreira, and Hari Stephen Kumar).
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