Dr. Emily Sahakian (Ph.D., Northwestern University and the École des Hautes Études en Sciences Sociales) teaches French and Francophone literature in the Department of Romance Languages. She is jointly appointed with Theatre & Film Studies, where she teaches theatre history/theory and community-based theatre. She specializes in Francophone Caribbean theatre, literature, and culture. Other research interests include intercultural theatre, post-colonial and transnational theatre and theory, French-language theatre, race and performance, and translation for the stage. Her first book, Staging Creolization: Women's Theatre and Performance from the French Caribbean (New World Studies Series, University of Virginia Press, 2017), examines seven plays by Ina Césaire, Maryse Condé, Gerty Dambury, and Simone Schwarz-Bart that premiered in the Caribbean or in France in the 1980s and 1990s and soon thereafter traveled to the United States. The book recasts how we understand these pioneering women playwrights, documents for the first time their global production and reception histories, and puts forth the concept of “creolization” as a way of understanding the broader cultural contributions and aesthetics of Caribbean theatre and performance. Professor Sahakian is the author of essays on Francophone Caribbean theatre and a forthcoming book chapter on French stage adaptations of Uncle Tom's Cabin. With Dr. Andrew Daily (University of Memphis), she is preparing a critical edition and translation of Edouard Glissant's play Histoire de nègre.
Assistant Professor of French
Assistant Professor of Theatre