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Graduate Program: Theatre and Performance Studies

Dissertations and Theses

Graduate students performing

The dissertation is the culminating project for the Ph.D. in Theatre and Performance Studies. A formal proposal for a dissertation should be submitted for the endorsement of the Graduate Faculty. See the department's Graduate Student Handbook for proposal instructions. The Graduate Faculty will review the proposal. Sample proposals are on file in the department or by contacting the Director of Graduate Studies.

We welcome projects that include archival research, ethnography, critical theory, literary analysis, and performance studies. Dissertation work begins in the third year of the Ph.D. program and is typically completed in a student's fourth or fifth year in the doctoral program.

Search the Archive

Dissertations and theses by our graduate are catalogued in the Dissertations & Theses @ Tufts University database. In the "Advanced Search" option, search for "drama" in the "Department – DEP" category. Dissertations & Theses @ Tufts provides full text for:
  • Most Ph.D. dissertations issued after 1996
  • Most master's theses issued after 2005

Recent Dissertations and Theses

2019 – Dissertations

"Beyond Dahomey: The Legacy and Afterlife of the Williams and Walker Company 1902-1921" (Beck Holden)
(Pat King)

"Directing btween the Lines: Iranian Theatre and the Aesthetics of Ambiguity" (Reza Mirsajadi)

"Homing a Turkish Diaspora: Turkish-American Women's Creative Labor" (Irem Seçil Rell Sen)

"Inspiration, Countercultural Aesthetics, and Dissent: The Ilklhom Theatre of Mark Weil" (Irina Yakubovskaya)

"Theories for Corporate Theatre" (Michael Morris)

2019 – Theses

"'ENOUGH OF THIS I'M NOTE LATINO ENOUGH BULLSHIT' The Social Re-Evaluative Eroticisms of Afro-Latinx Identities in U.S. Pop Culture" (Stephanie Engel)
"In Solidarity: Queer Appalachia's Zine Activism and the Radical Aesthetics of Homemaking." (Harry Hoke)

2018 – Dissertations

"An obvious caricature: The Consequences of Scientific Discourse on Theatrical Madness, 1807-1895" (Katherine Swimm)

Brief Deceptive Rainbows: Cultural Memory in Productions of Tennessee Williams's The Glass Menagerie, A Streetcar Named Desire, and A Cat on a Hot Tin Roof (Daniel Ciba)

2018 – Theses

"But What if Instead We Imagine Black Life" Femininity, Performance, and the Black Lives Movement (Teri Incampo)

The Man Within: Depictions of Blackness in Superhero Adaptations” (Peter Spearman)

2016 – Dissertations

"Black or Red? The Construction of Identity in Langston Hughes' Plays" (Katya Vrtis)

"Forgotten Figures: The Rhetorical Function of Tecmessa, Chrysothemis, and Ismene in Tragedies of Sophocles and Selected Adaptations" (Tiffany Pounds-Williams)

"Theatre of Common Sense: Ernie McClintock, Jazz Acting, and the Black Power Aesthetic (1965-2003)" (Ibby Cizmar)

2016 – Theses

"'Am I Not A Woman and A Sister?' Performance as Political Discourse in African American Women's Literary Societies" (Jenny Herron)

"Staging as Youth Culture in Colonial-Modern Shanghai: Student Theatre from the 1890s-1920s" (Yizhou Huang)

2015 – Dissertations

"American Billing: Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Shakespeare" (Danielle Rosvally)

"The American Pipe Dream: Drug Addiction on Stage 1890-1940" (Max Shulman)

"Arab and Muslim American Female Playwrights: Resistance and Revision through Solo Performance" (Megan Stahl)

"Freaks, Beasts, and Gadgets: Performing Order and Disorder in Early America" (Matthew DiCintio)

"Constructing the Sensorium: Neoliberalism and Aesthetic Practice in Neoliberal Theatre" (Paul Masters)

"Cultural Improvisations: Luigi Riccoboni and the Nouveau Theatre Italien" (Matthew McMahan)

"Documenting Rehearsal for Revolution: Theory, Practice, and Praxis in Theatre of the Oppressed" (Betsy Goldman)

2015 – Theses

"'Of Thee We Sing:' Microhistories of the Northeastern United States through the Lens of American Folkloric Opera" (Christian Krenek)

"Spectrums of Truth: Transcribing Reality in the Documentary Musical" (Reza Mirsajadi)