Episode Three: Julietta Singh


  • Rajni Shah
  • Julietta Singh
  • Fili 周 Gibbons




loss, pain, mess, disaster, haunting, non-linearity, process, resistance, dreams, cicadas


This episode draws on two different recordings of conversations between Rajni Shah and Julietta Singh, in which they discover and recognise common ground in their lived and embodied experiences while learning to let go of expectations about how the recording process itself might unfold. The structure of this episode is non-linear, inviting the listener on a disorienting and dreamy listening adventure.

The episode consists of three parts. First, there is an opening section in which Rajni and Julietta talk about loss, haunting, and mess, reflecting back on their original conversation, which was lost. This is followed by a series of dreamings: glimpses of the (restored) original conversation, enveloped in a thick soundscape of cicadas, neighbourhood sounds, and cello. In the third and final section, we return to the opening conversation, and hear Rajni and Julietta thinking through what it means to move into a heightened sense of the unknown.

In the accompanying offering to this episode, Julietta shares a reading from her new book, The Breaks.

Click here for full episode and credits.

Author Biographies

Rajni Shah

Rajni Shah (they/them) is an artist whose practice is focused on listening and gathering as creative and political acts. Key projects—always created alongside and in collaboration with others—include hold each as we fall (1999), The Awkward Position (2003-2004), Mr Quiver (2005-2008), small gifts (2006-2008), Dinner with America (2007-2009), Glorious (2010-2012), Experiments in Listening (2014-2015), Lying Fallow (2014-2015), Song (2016), I don’t know how (to decolonize myself) (2018), Feminist Killjoys Reading Group (2016-2020) and Listening Tables (2019-2020). In 2021, Rajni will publish a monograph and series of zines as part of the Performance Philosophy Series, entitled Experiments in Listening.

Julietta Singh

Julietta Singh is Associate Professor of English and Gender Studies at the University of Richmond, where she teaches courses on decolonial literature, the ecological humanities, and queer studies. She is the author of three books: No Archive Will Restore You (Punctum Books, 2018), Unthinking Mastery: Dehumanism and Decolonial Entanglements (Duke UP, 2018), and her forthcoming work of epistolary nonfiction, The Breaks (Coffee House Press and Daunt Books Originals, 2021).

Fili 周 Gibbons

Fili 周 Gibbons (we/them/us) are a musician and recording engineer working across a range of community and professional contexts to support plural voices, expressions, and sonic experiences. As well as leading community workshops they frequently work with other sound and video artists, drawing on listening, memory and intuition as guiding forces in collaborative making practices. Their work interfaces with plural cultural histories and experiences, intangible arts traditions, and community-oriented sound practice.


Butler, Octavia. 1993. Parable of the Sower. New York: Four Walls Eight Windows.

Butler, Octavia. 1998. Parable of the Talents. New York: Seven Stories Press.

Morrison, Toni. 1987. Beloved. New York: Alfred A. Knopf

Singh, Julietta. 2018. Unthinking Mastery: Dehumanism and Decolonial Entanglements. Durham, NC: Duke University Press. https://doi.org/10.1215/9780822372363

Singh, Julietta. 2021. The Breaks. Minneapolis and London: Coffee House Press and Daunt Books.




How to Cite

Shah, Rajni, Julietta Singh, and 周 Gibbons Fili. 2021. “Episode Three: Julietta Singh”. Performance Philosophy 6 (1):13 March 2021. https://doi.org/10.21476/PP.2021.61340.