Drama, Theatre and Performance: Our Research
Our globally renowned research spans feminist theatre and thought, Shakespeare in performance and on television, site-specific, live art and experimental theatre, performance ethnography, contemporary playwriting, radio and sonic arts, postcolonial and world theatre, creative writing, curatorial practice, political performance, social action, cultural memory and archives. Lecturers are experts on prominent contemporary artists and dramatists as well as being leading innovators in the field of creative practice-as-research.
Drama staff see their research not only as a way of retrospectively reflecting on ‘cultures of performance’, but as a valuable means of intervening within such cultures in the present, to address profound social challenges, enrich lives and effect positive cultural change. They have distinguished research profiles and trainings in performance and theatre studies, ethnography, anthropology, historiography, visual arts, literary, cultural and media studies, philosophy and political theory. Our work in performance studies, at the crossing of disciplines, has been at the forefront of broad interdisciplinary shifts in the field of Theatre Studies.
In recent years we have produced leading monographs on contemporary European theatre aesthetics, mobility and performance, Roma performance cultures, Nigerian Theatre, Harold Pinter, 1960s New York performance, and early Suffrage theatre, alongside significant edited collections on televised Shakespeare, creative criticism, and performance and nature. We have also produced highly impactful practical research projects in site-specific performance and installation art, dramaturgy, exhibition curation, radio playwriting and adaptation.
The department has many links and formal collaborations with major and small arts organisations in the UK and overseas, and we share our research globally through new media, in workshops, and by presentations at conferences and festivals. Staff research actively feeds back into new teaching so that our students learn from cutting-edge thinking, writing and making. Our doctoral research environment is one of the strongest in the field.
In the most recent Research Excellence Framework, the national survey of research quality, over 80% of our research was ranked as "world leading" or "internationally excellent".
Our Research Centre’s event listings are found at the top of this page and some examples of our recent and historical research projects and funded collaborations are found below.