Creative Matters with Nicole Hodges Persley

Nicole Hodges Persley

“Limitless Fun: Cultivating World Changing Creativity”

This interactive talk will explore how acts of fun and play can be read as radical acts of empathy that can inspire communities of care in scholarly, artistic, and workplace environments.  Dr. Hodges Persley will discuss how we can cultivate fun and play as ciphers of creativity that help us improvise, refine, and perform strategies of resistance that protect limitless environments of fun.

This talk seeks to inspire us to use acts of fun and play as curated modes of being that help us think critically about how we can address structures of power and inequity as roadblocks to social change.

Nicole Hodges Persley is an Associate Professor of African American Theater and performance in the Department of American Studies and African and African American Studies at The University of Kansas. An artist-scholar, Hodges Persley creates intentional bridges between the entertainment industry and academia. She is the Artistic Director of the KC Melting Pot Theatre, the premier African American theater company in Kansas City.


This talk is part of the Creative Matters lecture series sponsored by the UI Office of the Vice President for Research, in collaboration with the UI Arts Advancement Committee. A Q&A session will follow his talk. The event is free and open to the public.

The Creative Matters lecture series, launched in Fall 2015, seeks to demonstrate that creativity and innovation are not only at the core of all research and discovery, but also central to our human experience. Our lineup of speakers includes artists, thinkers, builders, and doers who challenge conventional thinking about creativity, science, and artistic expression, and borrow from a range of influences and disciplines in their work.

Individuals with disabilities are encouraged to attend all University of Iowa–sponsored events. If you are a person with a disability who requires a reasonable accommodation in order to participate in this program, please contact in advance at