Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)


Communication Studies

Document Type



The overall aim of this project is to theorize and invent a method of performance based on écriture féminine. This method is meant to be useable, generative, and transferable to other practitioners. Following a heuretic practice of reading selected texts for what they suggest about making new texts, writerly method that invites expansion in future research is revealed. This project is but a beginning of an articulation and proposes only one path through these texts. The tracking of the process of reading and experimenting with performance provides a space for reflection that illuminates gaps to be explored in future work. The purpose of this study is three-fold. The first aim is to articulate a method for creating postdramatic devised feminist performance as an entry into and extension of the history of feminist performance and theater. Second, I advocate the use of écriture féminine as a generative starting point for devising rather than an after-the-fact application that subordinates performance to philosophy. The use I advocate moves beyond the application of philosophical ideas to performance examples to bring performance and philosophy into contact with one another and generate new ideas of both based on a mutually affective encounter. Finally, by using écriture féminine in this way I hope to reintroduce it into the feminist performance conversation from which it is often left out or dismissed as essentialist. I approached this project in three phases. The first phase was the close reading of Stigmata by Hélène Cixous, Strangers to Ourselves by Julia Kristeva, and The Irigaray Reader by Luce Irigaray and edited by Margaret Whitford. In this phase I gleaned compositional principles to use in performance experimentation. The second phase involved the rehearsal and experimentation process, which culminated in the public performance. In the third phase I review my close reading notes, the documentation of the rehearsal process, and audience feedback to formulate a picture of the project as a whole and reflect on what was accomplished. The project concludes with a summary and suggestion for future possibilities as well as a number of practical exercises for performance purposes.



Document Availability at the Time of Submission

Release the entire work immediately for access worldwide.

Committee Chair

Bowman, Michael S.



Included in

Communication Commons