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Elizabeth Osborne

Published May 18, 2015

Graduate Faculty,
School of Theatre
Curriculum Vitae (CV)

Contact

bosborne@fsu.edu
850.645.6858
Bethosborne.com

Elizabeth A. Osborne is Associate Professor of Theatre Studies at Florida State University. Her research is driven by two connecting themes: the relationship between theatre and its surrounding society and the ways that theatre and performance influence the shaping and reshaping of history and cultural memory over time.

 

Her book, Staging the People: Community and Identity in the Federal Theatre Project (Palgrave, 2011), and many of her articles and conference presentations delve into the ways that theatre connects to, shapes, and is shaped by, its communities. Working in the Wings: New Perspectives on Theatre History and Labor (co-edited with Christine Woodworth; Southern Illinois University Press, 2015) seeks to recover the frequently unseen labors of hidden theatrical workers and to challenge the ways that scholars think about labor, theatre history, and performance. Her current research project integrates theatre history/historiography and performance studies, and explores how performance reshapes history in the popular imagination. She has presented case studies from this project at Performance Studies International, the American Society for Theatre Research, the Association of Theatre in Higher Education, the Mid-America Theatre Conference, and the International Federation of Theatre Research. She also earned the American Theatre and Drama Society’s Faculty Travel Award for this work and is the recipient of the Distinguished Research Award from the College of Visual Arts, Theatre, and Dance (2012).

 

She pioneered a hybrid version of Introduction to Theatre for Non-Majors at FSU and has recreated the course in a new, fully online version designed to serve up to 800 students a semester. She also teaches graduate and undergraduate courses in US Theatre, Theatre History & Historiography, Women in US Theatre, Contemporary US Theatre, Popular Culture and Entertainments, Theatre Pedagogy, Archives & Performance, and Dramaturgy.

 

Osborne has worked in dramaturgy and outreach on a number of professional and university productions, including the Chicago premiere of The Cripple of Inishmaan, Northlight Theatre’s Master Class, and the University of Maryland productions of Romeo and Juliet and Assassins. She also taught theatre and drama to children for Creative Kids/Interact Story and the Institute of Reading Development, and created study and outreach guides for New Repertory Theatre, Northlight Theatre, and Brandeis University.

 

Osborne has also served the profession in a range of different positions, including conference planner for the American Theatre and Drama Society (2009, 2010), Co-Chair of the Mid-America Theatre Conference Theatre History Symposium (2011, 2012), and Book Review Editor for the Journal of Dramatic Theory and Criticism (2011-2015). She is currently serving her second term on the executive board for the American Theatre and Drama Society, a member of the editorial board for the Journal of American Drama and Theatre, and the Conference Planner for the Mid-America Theatre Conference.

 

Education

B.A. Theatre, Illinois Wesleyan University, Bloomington, Illinois

M.F.A. Dramaturgy, Brandeis University, Waltham, Massachusetts

Ph.D. Theatre and Performance Studies, University of Maryland, College Park, Maryland

 

Research Areas

U.S. theatre history and historiography; the Federal Theatre Project; community, identity, and representation; performance, labor, and labor history; intersections of history, memory, time, and popular culture; intersections of theatre, math, and science; dramaturgy

 

Select Scholarly/Creative Works & Awards

  • Working in the Wings: New Perspectives on Theatre History and Labor. Co-edited with Christine Woodworth. Theater in the Americas Series. Carbondale, Illinois: Southern Illinois University Press, 2015.
  • Staging the People: Community and Identity in the Federal Theatre Project. Studies in Theatre and Performance. New York: Palgrave, 2011. (2011 Publication Subvention Award, American Theatre and Drama Society)
  • “Imagined Democracy: The Federal Theatre Project Performs (Native) America.” In Experiments in Democracy: Interracial and Cross-Cultural Exchange in American Theatre and Performance, 1912-1945, edited by Jonathan Shandell and Cheryl Black. Carbondale: Southern Illinois University Press. In Press.
  • “Waiting in the Wings: Work.” In Working in the Wings: New Perspectives on Theatre History and Labor, edited by Elizabeth A. Osborne & Christine Woodworth. Carbondale: Southern Illinois University Press, 2015.
  • “Hidden in Plain Sight: Recovering the Federal Theatre Project’s Caravan Theatre.” In Working in the Wings: New Perspectives on Theatre History and Labor, edited by Elizabeth A. Osborne & Christine Woodworth. Carbondale: Southern Illinois University Press, 2015.
  • “Storytelling, Chiggers, and the Bible Belt: The Georgia Experiment as the Public Face of the Federal Theatre Project.” Theatre History Studies 31 (2011), 9- 26. (2010 Robert A. Schanke Research Award Winner)
  • “Disappearing Frontiers and the National Stage: Placing the Portland Federal Theatre Project.” Theatre History Studies 29 (2009), 103-121.
  • “A Nation in Need: Revelations and Disaster Relief in the Federal Theatre Project.” Journal of American Drama and Theatre 20, no. 2 (Spring 2008): 49-64. http://jadtjournal.org/past-issues/volume-20-issue-2-spring-2008/.
  • Osborne, Elizabeth A. “Yankee Consternation in the Deep South: Worshipping at the Altars of Steel.Theatre Symposium 13 (2005): 51-67.
  • Numerous entries in The Facts on File Companion to American Drama, The Greenwood Encyclopedia of African American Literature, The Greenwood Encyclopedia of Ethnic Literature, The Encyclopedia of Early Republic and Antebellum America, and The Cambridge World Encyclopedia of Stage Actors and Acting.