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Sandra L. Richards

Emeritus Professor of African American Studies, Theater, and Performance Studies

Drama, Stanford University (Ph.D.)
English and French Literatures, Brown University (A.B.)


AFAM 259 Introduction to African American Theatre
AFAM 381 Topics: Performance of Memory in the Black Atlantic
AFAM 332 Black Feminist Theories
AFAM 402 Memory Studies
Black Expressive Arts and Cultural Studies

Current Research:

Professor of African American Studies and Theatre, Richards also holds a courtesy appointment in Performance Studies at Northwestern University. She specializes in African American, African, and African Diaspora theatre and drama, having authoredAncient Songs Set Ablaze: The Theatre of Femi Osofisan and numerous articles on a range of black dramatists. From 2001-2004, she held the Leon Forrest Professorship of African American Studies that supported ongoing research on issues of cultural tourism to slave sites throughout the Black Atlantic. Working as co-editor with Sandra Shannon of Howard University, Richards is preparing The MLA Handbook of Approaches to Teaching the Plays of August Wilson.

Recent Publications:

"Black Women Playwrights in American Theatre," with Kathy A. Perkins, Theatre Journal 62.4 (December 2010): 541-545.

"In the Kitchen, Cooking Up Diaspora Possibilities: Bailey and Lewis’s Sistahs,"Theatre Research International 35.2 (July 2010): 152-163.

"'Function at the Junction': African Diaspora Studies and Theatre Studies," Tejumola Olaniyan and James H. Sweet, eds.,The African Diaspora and the Disciplines(Bloomington: Indiana University Press, 2010):193-212.

"Space, Water, Memory: Slavery and Beaufort, South Carolina" Cultural Dynamics: Insurgent Scholarship on Culture, Politics, and Power 21.3 (2009): 255-282.

"Landscapes of Memory: Representing the African Diaspora’s Return 'Home'" in Naana Opoku-Agyemang, Paul E. Lovejoy and David V. Trotman, eds., Africa and Trans-Atlantic Memories: Literary and Aesthetic Manifestations of Diaspora and History(Trenton, NJ: Africa World Press, 2008): 291-301.

Recent Honors and Awards:

Featured in Qatar Foundation magazine. The Foundation is the major donor/sponsor of Education City.

Performance and the Public Sphere: A Festschrift in Honor or Professor Sandra L. Richards,” University of California, Berkeley, 4-5 June 2010.

Outstanding Teacher of Theatre in Higher Education, from Association for Theatre in Higher Education, 2007.

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