IX Lisbon Summer School for the Study of Culture

Special Events

Galeria Fundação Amélia de Mello (Universidade Católica Portuguesa)

Uncanny River (The Crossing)

Uncanny River (The Crossing) (2014), by João Biscainho (1979, Portalegre), is a video installation which, for the purposes of the present exhibition, takes on the configuration of the space hosting it, namely the Amélia de Mello Foundation Gallery. In this relocation process, it simultaneously transfigures the space and is itself transfigured into a sculpture-installation.

For more information please see the exhibition handout.




On Shifting of Symbolic Boundaries Within the Israeli Culture – Performative Knowledge in the Making

(25 min.)


By Zohar Yanko, The Lisbon Consortium*

Artistic assistance: João Ferro Martins


According to John Agnew, borders “not only limit movements of things, money, and people, but they also limit the exercise of intellect, imagination, and political will (Agnew, 2008: 176). In coherence with the latest trends of border studies, this research refers to borders and boundaries as dynamic processes and institutions of power rather than stable, solid, geographical lines on the map. By tracing contemporary understandings and representations of borders in its physical and non-physical dimension, I wish to address different ways that boundaries act to shape our cultural spheres. The term Symbolic Boundaries refers to the existing, invisible separations appearing within our mental perception of the world around us; dividing it into distinct cognitive categories, while limiting our ability to think beyond them (Lamont & Molnár, 2002:168). More specifically, the research focus on the symbolic line that marks the representations of gender identity within the context of the Israeli society. Drawing on culture studies, border studies and performative studies traditions, this research wishes to create a meeting point where different forms of knowledge production come into dialogue. I present an audio-visual, performative reading of my thesis dissertation that is designed to provide a space where one can think of the border phenomenon outside of the agreed boundaries of both academic and artistic doings. This allows to reconsider and challenge yet another symbolic boundary – the one that separates “Art” and “Academia” in the context of knowledge production, as well as to wonder about the role and relevance of cultural research within contemporary fields of culture.

Keywords: Borders, Boundaries, Gender, Performance, performative bordering, Israeli culture.


Agnew, J. (2008). Borders on the mind: re-framing border thinking. Ethics & Global Politics, 1(4), 175–191. http://doi.org/10.3402/egp.v1i4.1892

Lamont, Michèle, and Virág Molnár. “The Study of Boundaries in the Social Sciences.” Annual Review of Sociology 28.1 (2002): 167-95. https://doi.org/10.1146/annurev.soc.28.110601.141107


*Zohar Yanko holds a B.A. in Psychology and Sociology from The Academic College of Tel Aviv-Yaffo and a Masters degree in Culture Studies – Performance and Creativity from Universidade Católica Portuguesa. Additionally, she holds a diploma of Research and Documentary Screenplay from the Open University of Israel. Zohar finds great interest in Visual Culture, Performative Research and Feminist Theories. Recently she’s been working on the theme of symbolic boundaries and the way they act to shape and influence the cultural, political, mental and physical environment of the Israeli society.

Create your website with WordPress.com
Get started
%d bloggers like this: