Can the humanities perform efficiently and effectively?
Today representatives of the humanities take part in various kinds of performances with different or even mutually exclusive meanings and goals. In some cases they perform willingly and deliberately, but in others they become a catalyst of new strategies of resistance.
A mutative performance (i.e. one the objective of which is change) is usually the goal and sense of research which is to enrich, transform and often criticise the existing rules of describing and understanding cultural phenomena. On the other hand, researchers’ environment is often provided by the reality of organisational normative performances: institutional and market-related. An additional challenge is posed by the high performance of advanced technologies because of which the humanities began to lose their monopoly on the knowledge of the cultural functioning of humans.
Drawing on Jon McKenzie’s general performance theory, I will focus on potentially successful — usually bottom-up — autostrategies of managing one’s own scholarly performance, strategies that enable representatives of the humanities to loosen the grip of the hierarchical, linear and closed disciplinary paradigm in order to fully participate in the modern networked performance of science based on relations and openness.