Wouldn’t it be great if there were something we could do that could teach us how to work together? Kinetic play, sports, physical games, and other activities where interacting with each is central to the experience, can unite us and can show us how to disagree with respect.

 

But there’s a catch: too much attention to winning turns sports from play into work; too much attention to winning can be stressful and can promoted deception and even violence. In this presentation, author, professor, and martial artist Janet O’Shea shows us how physical play shows us to compete without needing to win and how to disagree with respect.

WATCH THE TALK ABOVE

PODCASTS

On Martial Arts, Dance and Politics: Martial Arts Studies Podcast

MAY 2020

Conversation with memoirist Carla Sameth


MAY 2019


 

Conversation with sports sociologist Alex Channon


APRIL 2019

Conversation with poet, activist, and personal essayist
Xochitl-Julisa Bermejo


JANUARY 11, 2019


 

Conversation with sports sociologist Francesco Duina


DECEMBER 21, 2018

Conversation with Thai fighter, graphic novelist, and rhetorician Stephanie Phillips


DECEMBER 11, 2018

 

Art Fight

SEASON 4, EPISODE 10 | 2019

Burn It All Down Feminist Sports Podcast


NOVEMBER 27, 2018 

“On this week’s show, Lindsay, Brenda, and Jessica are joined by guest co-host Erica Ayala. After laughing about a new statue of Mo Salah (5:41), the gang talks about the many overlaps of Sports and Politics (22:36). Then Brenda interviews Dr. Janet O’Shea about what play can offer today’s society and O’Shea’s experiences as a martial arts practitioner (39:39). Then we get into the brand new women’s collegiate basketball season (48:44).”
 

 

Conversation with world champion kickboxer Kathy Long


OCTOBER 15, 2018
 


 

Conversation with memoirists and martial artists
Susan Schorn and Cathy Chapaty


SEPTEMBER 25, 2018



 

TALKS

Risk, Failure, Play:
Sport Beyond the Demands of Competition


NOVEMBER 20, 2018 | UNIVERSITY OF BRIGHTON, EASTBOURNE
 


 

Oppositional Civility, Far-Right Fight Clubs,
and Agonistic Democracy:
Martial Arts as a Model for Politics


NOVEMBER 21, 2018 | BRUNEL UNIVERSITY

INTERDISCIPLINARY PERFORMANCE RESEARCH LABORATORY AND LECTURES

 

MMA Progressives and Far-Right Fight Clubs:
Martial Arts as a Model for Agonistic Democracy


NOVEMBER 15, 2018 | LONDON THEATRE SEMINAR
 


 

UCLA SCHOOL OF ARTS AND ARCHITECTURE

Ten Questions Series: What is Failure?


NOVEMBER 13, 2018
 

 

Strange Bedfellows?
Academic Disciplines in an Age of Right-Wing Populism


MARCH 9, 2018 | WILLIAMS COLLEGE


DANCE/PERFORMANCE IN INTERDISCIPLINARY PERSPECTIVE SYMPOSIUM
 

Making Play Work:
Competition, Spectacle and Intersubjectivity
in Hybrid Martial Arts


JULY 2016 | UNIVERSITY OF CARDIFF, WALES


KEYNOTE ADDRESS: SECOND ANNUAL MARTIAL ARTS STUDIES CONFERENCE


 

Beyond Winning


MAY 15, 2016 | TEDxUCLA



 

INTERVIEWS

UCLA NEWSROOM

In new book, professor explores the benefits
of physical play like martial arts


SEPTEMBER 19, 2018
 

Q&A with Janet O’Shea, UCLA professor of dance, about Risk, Failure, Play:
What Dance Reveals about Martial Arts Training

 

Martial Arts Studies Interview


DOJO TV


 

VIDEOS, OP-EDS, PRESS COVERAGE

“Professor wonders what adults lose when they stop engaging in competitive play”
 

 

Five Ways Sparring Can Change you as a Person

 

 

Movement and the Mind


APRIL 1, 2015

 

©2020 JANET O'SHEA. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.