2017 Women and Comedy Symposium

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Women and Comedy Symposium

University of Salford Thursday 19th October 2017


This symposium was the first convened by Mixed Bill, a newly established interdisciplinary comedy and gender research network currently comprised of researchers from the Universities of Salford, Leeds and Sheffield Hallam. This inaugural event included a vibrant mixture of academic papers, interventions, workshops and panel discussions and coincided with the opening of the 2017 Women in Comedy Festival in central Manchester. As part of the symposium, attendees went along to the launch night of the festival to socialise, network and encounter first-hand the evolving strategies that seek to challenge the inequalities on today’s live comedy circuit.

Presenters and papers

Keynote lecture
Dr Rosie White (Northumbria University) Smack the Pony: Queering Postfeminism in British Sketch Comedy

Panel 1 Capturing female comic performance.

Sam Beale (Middlesex University) Gagging for it: irony, innuendo and the politics of subversion in women’s comic performances on the London music hall stage

Dr Ian Wilkie (University of Salford) Missing in Action? The Strange Invisibility of Two (Very) Funny Women

Harriet Reed (V&A Museum London) Female Liberation in BBC Radio Comedy

Panel 2 Comedy and gender subversion

Dr Maggie Inchley (Queen Mary University of London) Womanhearing in Manwatching

Victoria Hogg and Francesca Reid – (Performers, London) Breaking The Gender Trap In Comedy Improv (performance paper)

Panel 3 Comedy, feminism and the live circuit

Lindsay Rodgers (Queen’s University Canada) Intersectional feminism as championed by/within stand-up comedy

Neslihan Arol (University of Arts Berlin), An Escape Strategy from the Constructions of Hegemonic Imaginary: Using Allegory in Stand-Up Comedy

Ellie Tomsett (Sheffield Hallam University) Where are we now? Comedy and Spatial Justice  (a short provocation).

Panel 4 Comedy, activism and female bodies 

Chella Quint (Performer and activist, Sheffield) Adventures in Adventures in Menstruating: How goofing on adverts became the #periodpositive movement.

Janice Perry (Performance artist, University of Vermont) Naked at the Met (performance paper)

Future Funny Industry Panel and Q&A

Chairing discussion – Ellie Tomsett (Sheffield Hallam) and Kate Fox (University of Leeds)

Panel members:

Ava Vidal (Stand-up comedian, journalist and activist, currently raising awareness of domestic violence and empowering women through comedy)

Hazel O’Keefe (Director or Laughing Cows and Women in Comedy Festival UK)

Caroline Moran (Rose D’Or winning co-creator and writer of Raised by Wolves)

Sameena Zehra (Stand-up comedian and storyteller)

Jackie Hagan (Comic, stand-up poet and theatre-maker, whose work includes Some People Have Too Many Legs)

Rebecca Papworth (BBC TV comedy producer, first female producer of Have I Got News For You?)

This event was made possible with the support of both University of Salford and Sheffield Hallam University.

Keep up to date on our future events by following us on Twitter @MixedBill


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