Gustave Weltsek

Associate Professor

Curriculum and Instruction
Academic Programs:
Arts Education
Research Areas:
Critical Performative Pedagogy, Arts as Community Activism, Collaborative Arts Based Inquiry
ED 3226
(812) 856-8158
Curriculum Vitae

About Me

My work emerges from a commitment to Anti-racist, Anti-Black racist, LGBTQ+ positive, and Anti-ableist, actionings of social justice and equity. Primary to this is a positioning of the Arts and "education" as an applied critical performative pedagogy where;

“…classrooms are perceived as spaces where students and teachers perform and imagine multiple social realities and texts addressing political issues, moving beyond superficial understandings of ‘difference’, ‘the other,’ or assumed ‘naïve’ notions of empowerment and instead explore the embedded multiplicity of discourses” Weltsek and Medina (2020)

Along these lines my artistic activity, research, scholarship, and teaching imagine the "Arts" as an applied means to engage in creative activism within and across a multiplicity of communities, ways of knowing and acting upon and within the world. Theatre, drama, and the performative as applied are for me socio-cultural community-based spaces to engage in creation, imagination and politically powerful playfulness.

Much of my work consists of collaborating with diverse communities to devise new pieces of issue and activist-based theatre which emerge from their specific realities.

Another Play about Racism: A Film

Another Play about Racism: A Film is a student created film funded in part by The IU OVPR and the IU Emergency Grant in Aid program. The play focuses on how the eight young people’s struggle with racism and anti-racist action in Bloomington, Indiana.

NAT 20 

Nat 20 to Heal is a student created play developed as part of the Drama and Theatre Education Secondary License Addition I Created.  The play deals with living through the trauma of suicide and is the topic of the article, Devising in the Pandemic: Trauma and a dramatic redesign of a Youth Theatre Tour. International Journal for Designs in Learning.

Emergent Theatre

Along with Mr. Eric Love, and a group of 30 dedicated undergraduates and graduates we developed the student group Emergent Theatre. This group created works based in social justice and equity, though Diversity Training and multiple theatre strategies. This collaborative work awarded the 2012, Indiana University, Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Building Bridges Outstanding Leadership Faculty Award.

I've taught at Ivy Tech Community College in Bloomington where I served as the Chair of the Humanities and Fine Arts Department. I have served as the editor of the Youth Theatre Journal and been a recipient of the American Alliance of Theatre and Education’s (AATE) research award. In addition to my work locally, I have served on the faculty at the University of Puerto Rico and the University of British Columbia.

Publication Sampling:

Weltsek, G. & Cohee-Manifold, M. (2022) Embodying the Political: Arts-Based Learning and Student Agency, Art Education, 75:5, 21-26, DOI: 10.1080/00043125.2022.2076542

Weltsek, G. (2022). Let’s Make Theatre Illegal Again. ElevAATE.

Weltsek, G. (2022, under review) Decoloniality, Standardization, and Conscientização: A Critical Performative Pedagogical approach to Teacher Education.

Weltsek, G.(2021) Devising in the Pandemic: Trauma and a dramatic redesign of a Youth Theatre Tour. International Journal for Designs in Learning. 12 (1), 171-180. 

Weltsek, G., & Hammoor, C. (2019). Leaping into the disassociated space: Unknowing activism, agency and youth identity in “Notes from Nowhere.” ArtsPraxis 5(2), 80-113. 

Weltsek, G., & Hammoor, C. (2019). Drama with, by and for youth in an age of post- truth. Youth Theatre Journal33.

Weltsek, G. (2019). Leap into action: Critical performative pedagogies. In L. Campbell (Ed.), Art & design education. New York, NY: Peter Lang.

Weltsek, G. (2018). Theatre programs in community colleges: A policy for equity. Arts Education Policy Review120(2), 103-111.

Weltsek, G. (2018). The racialized roles we play: Owning the self through an emergent theatre project, Youth Theatre Journal, 32(1), 16-29.

Weltsek, G., & Koontz, N. (2018). Subversive literacy: Arts-based learning for social justice, equity, and student agency. English Journal,107(6), 61–68.

Weltsek, G. (2017). Journeying into the complexities and possibilities of performative pedagogical practice, research and analysis. SCENARIO: Journal for Performative Teaching, Learning, Research,11(2), 32-50.

Weltsek, G., & Medina, C. (2014). Global markets/global Englishes: Drama and discourses in colonial spaces. Youth Theatre Journal,28(1), 18-31.

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