Date of Award

2014

First Advisor

Aimee Michel

Second Advisor

Karen Beaumont

Third Advisor

Wendy Shifrin

Abstract

My thesis is a record of the process I went through this year while trying to write an original play. I began the year researching Theatre of the Absurd with the intention to write an original play inspired by the Absurdist genre. During this part of my thesis writing process, in addition to learning that I am not naturally a playwright, I became frustrated with the representation of women in the genre and thus switched to researching female Absurdist playwrights. Discovering a handful of inspiring feminist authors motivated me to write a new play composed of found texts voicing the silenced stories of marginalized people, primarily women of color. I completed the first draft of this play before discovering the writer Peggy Phelan. At the end of my thesis I write about how Phelan’s book Unmarked influenced my perception of the play I’d written and helped me fully realize the relationship of my new play to liberal representation/visibility politics. Due to the turbulent nature of my writing process, none of the plays I drafted were ever performed.

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