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     My research is distinguished by a wide range of interests, from American theatre history to theatre as a liberal art. The majority of my research has been focused on theatre's role within a liberal arts curriculum. My dissertation explores theatre and the liberal arts in Christian higher education. Through a qualitative study, I am interviewing department chairs and program directors at Christian institutions to understand the effects of religious affiliation on theatre and the liberal arts.

     Beyond the liberal arts, my research has included looking at patriotic presentations in early twentieth-century public schools. Public school performances of patriotic vignettes were crucial in America’s eventual involvement in World War I and World War II. This type of performative patriotism was, and is, also seen in the recitation of the Pledge of Allegiance. My research into patriotic performance has also led to exploring American theatrical activities during wartime from the Revolutionary War through the First World War. This has culminated in a one-act, one-woman play about the real actress turned Civil War spy, Pauline Cushman.

     Both my theatrical practice and my research are informed by applied theatre, performance studies, and Augusto Boal’s theories on social and political theatre. As an essential component of society, theatre has both the power and responsibility to actively engage in public discourse. In order to do this effectively we must engage in the history and theory of theatre as a liberal art, but also on the development of skills in acting and technical theatre as a practical art.

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