Dr David Calder

Lect. in Theatre & Performance Studies

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I am Lecturer in Theatre & Performance Studies in the Department of Drama at Manchester. Broadly speaking, my research and teaching address the politics of performance through engagement with theatre and performance theory (particularly questions of theatrical space and time), political theory (particularly feminist and queer approaches), and theories of space and place. I am especially interested in what happens when theatre claims or conjures space as public (hence my research on street theatre and other performances of public space -- see Research section for details). In both my research and my teaching, I am interested in how theatre and performance work: the material infrastructures that support them, and the aesthetic and phenomenological dynamics that animate them.

Prior to joining the Drama Department in 2014, I earned my B.A. in French from Trinity College in Hartford, Connecticut and completed my Ph.D., titled "Visible Machinery: Street Theatre and Industrial Space in Contemporary France," at Northwestern University in Evanston, Illinois. I conducted fieldwork for my doctorate as a Fulbright Fellow in France.

I am an award-winning writer working across multiple genres. My work has received the TDR Essay Prize (2012), the inaugural QuietManDave Prize for flash nonfiction (2020), and honourable mention in the Outstanding Article Prize from the Association for Theatre in Higher Education (2021). I enjoy working with students and colleagues on the craft and habit of writing.

Areas of expertise

Education / academic qualifications

  • 2014 - Doctor of Philosophy, Visible Machinery: Street Theatre and Industrial Space in Contemporary France, Northwestern University

Related information


Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

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Prize: Fellowship awarded competitively

Prize: Prize (including medals and awards)

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