Carol Martin


Carol Martin

Carol Martin is a Professor of Drama. Her books include Theatre of the Real and Dance Marathons: Performing American Culture of the 1920s and 1930s. She is the Editor of Dramaturgy of the Real on the World Stage, A Sourcebook of Feminist Theatre, and the co-editor with Henry Bial of Brecht Sourcebook.  She is the Guest Editor of four special issues of TDR, “Reclaiming the Real” (2017), “Performing the City” (2015), “Documentary Theatre” (2006), and “Japanese Theatre: 1960s to the Present” (with Kurihara Nanako).


2021 Invited Speaker at the Brecht and Cinema Conference, 21 November, The New School, NYC.
2021 Invited Plenary presentation of “House Museums, Public Space and Personal Memory” 2nd Rupkatha International Open Conference on Recent Advances in Interdisciplinary Humanities, August 28-30, 2021. Organized by Rupkatha Journal on Interdisciplinary Humanities in collaboration with the University of Arizona, Tucson, USA, and the University of Talca, Chile.
2021 Speaker/Curator for Segal Talks at CUNY Graduate Center, June 6: Emily Mann.
2021 Segal Talks at CUNY Graduate Center, May 27: Carol Martin discusses Theatre of the Real.
2020 Speaker/Curator for Segal Talks at CUNY Graduate Center, November 11, 12,13: Hotel Modern (Holland), Rabih Mroué (Lebanon), and Nicolas Kent (United Kingdom).
2020 Guest Speaker “Theatre in the Coronavirus” part of the “Dean’s International Lecture Series” at The Yolanda and David Katz Faculty of the Arts, Tel Aviv University, Israel 24 June.
2017 “The Real and Its Outliers” Hong Kong Academy for Performing Arts, Hong Kong, July 29-31.
2015 “On Location: Notes Toward a Theory of Location Performance” at “Rethinking Political Theatre in the West” Tel Aviv University, Israel, March 2-4.
2012 “The Reality Based Community,” at Monsters of Reality Festival and Conference, Dramatikkens Hus, Oslo, Norway, March 22-25.
2011 “Dramaturgy of the Spectator in Kamp by Hotel Modern,” Things Unspeakable: Theatre and Human Rights Conference, University of York, United Kingdom, October 5-7.
2010 “Not by Words Alone” Acting with Facts Conference, University of Reading United Kingdom, September.


Foreign Assembly: Okada’s Time’s Journey Through a Room” in TDR, Spring 2021, T250, guest edited by William Sun.
“Holding a Mirror Up To Theatre: Milo Rau’s La Reprise: Histoire(s) du théâtre (I)” in TDR, T249, winter 2021.
“Requiem” in TDR, Fall 2020.
“The Power of Reimagining Cultural Tradition” in Wochi Kochi (Japanese journal), summer 2020.
“The Theatricalization of Public and Private Life” a chapter of Theatre of the Real (in Chinese) for the Beijing journal Drama, 2019.
“No Heaven, Only Sky” published in Skirball’s Indefinite Articles both online and in the printed matter, 2019.
"Teatr I rzeczywistość," (“Artists’ Testimonies:” Theatre and Reality”) in Dialog (in Polish), 2019. The lead essay in the leading Polish theatre journal.
“Our Reflection Talks Back” in American Theatre, August 2017.
Locations of Memory: Bridging the Gap between Private and Public Memory in Location Performance and Theater Mitu’s Hamlet-Ur-Hamlet” in Sinais de cena, edited by the Centre for Theatre Studies, University of Lisbon, Portugal 2016.
“The Real and Its Outliers” in Theatre Journal, March 2015.
“Please Take Your Seats” with Jane Arnfield in Theatre Pages: The Magazine of York St. John’s, issue 9, 2014.
“Performing the City” in TDR (T223), Fall 2014.
“Becoming Corpus” with Richard Schechner TDR (T223) Fall 2014.
“The Theatrical Life of Documents” in Peripeti (Scandinavian Theatre Journal) June 2014 (invited contribution).
“Rushing the Gates of Heaven: At Arena, Double Edge’s Grand Parade Marches through a Turbulent Century,” in American Theatre, April 2013 (invited contribution).
“After Paradise: The Open Theatre’s The Serpent, Terminal, and The Mutation Show,” in Theatre Arts China (in Chinese) issue # 5, 2010.
“Foreword” to Wanderers: New Israeli Plays edited by Sharon Aronson-Lehavi, Seagull Books, 2009.
“Intersections of Art and Life: The Avant-Garde, Autobiography and Documentary” (in French) in Théâtre/Public, no. 190, a special issue entitled "Théorie et histoire” September 2008.
“Extending the Real: Theatre of the 21st Century” in New Asian Imaginations July 2008.
“Bodies of Evidence” TDR China ed. by William Sun, vol. 1, no. 1, (in Chinese) pp.66-73, autumn 2007.
“Feminist Drama,” “Jack Gelber,” “Emily Mann,” and “Notozake Shange” entries in the Columbia Encyclopedia of Modern Drama, Columbia University Press, 2007.
“Bodies of Evidence,” The Drama Review (T191), fall 2006.
“Autobiography and Documentary: The Self and Social Justice” in Theatre Arts (in Japanese), 2006.
“Lingering Heat and Local Global J Stuff” in TDR (T189) spring 2006.
“In Defense of Democracy: Celebrating the Work of Emily Mann,” in Women and Performance, spring 2005.
“Bertolt Brecht “in Encyclopedia of Science, Technology, and Ethics, Macmillan, 2005.
“Jack Gelber: In Memoriam” TDR T180, winter 2003.
“The Magic of Ancient Japan Onstage” New York Times, Arts and Leisure, 23 March 2003: Sec. 2, p.5.
“Action Speaks Louder” New York Times, Arts and Leisure, 23 Sept. 2001: Sec. 2, p. 5.
“Another Kind of Metamorphosis” in Konteksty, vol. 1-4 (in Polish), 2001:  pp. 208-291.
“Theatre, Dance and Gender in a Global Context” in Theatre Art (in Chinese) published by Shanghai Theatre Academy, 2000.
“Out of Asia.” in Playbill, 2000, with Richard Schechner.
“Japanese Theatre: 1960s – Present” The Drama Review T165, 2000.
“Brecht, Feminism and Chinese Theatre,” The Drama Review, guest editor Sussane Winnacker, T164, 1999.
“Trinidad Carnival Glossary,” The Drama Review, T159 1998.
“Dance Marathons,” The International Encyclopedia of Dance, Oxford University Press, 1997.
“Introduction” A Sourcebook of Feminist Theatre, 1996.
“Private Fantasy and Public Ambivalence,” conference proceedings of The Society of Dance History Scholars, pp. 321-330, 1994.
“Esistenze Inimmaginate,” Lapis: Percorsi della Riflessione Femminile no. 22, pp. 41-42, (in Italian) 1994.
“Unimagined Existence,” The Magdalena: An International Grapevine for Women in Contemporary Theatre, no. 11, 1993.
“Feminist Analysis Across Cultures: Performing Gender in India” Women and Performance vol.3, no.2, pp. 32-40, 1988.
“Dance Marathons: For No Good Reason,” The Drama Review, T113, pp. 48-63, 1987.
Introduction to Martha Clarke’s “Vienna Lusthaus,” The Drama Review, T115, pp. 42-44, 1987.
“Indian Dance Traditions and Modern Theatre,” Asian Theatre Journal, vol.2, no.2, 1986.

Book Chapters

“Prophets Needed: Five Easy Pieces and La Reprise: Histoire(s) du théâtre (I) by Milo Rau in Staging 21st Century Tragedies: Theatre, Politics and Global Crisis edited by Avra Sidiropoulou, Routledge, forthcoming 2022.

“Foreign Assembly: Okada’s Time’s Journey Through a Room” in Okada Toshiki and Japanese Theatre Edited by Peter Eckersall, Andreas Regelsberger, Barbara Geilhorn, and Cody Poulton

Performance Research Books, 2021.

“Under the Radar Festival, New York: Experimental, Urban and Global” in Cambridge Companion to International Theatre Festivals edited by Ric Knowles, Cambridge University Press, 2020.

La Table et Le Monde Hors Scène: Les Objects Scéniques Dans Le Théâtre Du Réel” (“Tables and the Offstage World: Stage Objects and Theatre of the Real”) in Les Théâtres documentaires edited by Beatrice Picon-Vallin, Montlellier, Deuxième époque, 2019.

 “The Theatrical Life of Documents” in Das Dokument in den Künsten edited by Daniela Hahn, Wilhelm Fink publishers, Berlin, 2016.

“History and Politics Onstage: The Theatre of the Real” in Not Just a Mirror. Looking for the Political Theatre of Today edited by Florian Malzacher, Alexander Verlag, Berlin & Live Arts Development Agency, London, 2015.

“The Politics of Telling and Workers' Rights: The Case of Mike Daisey” in Theatre and Human Rights after 1945: Things Unspeakable edited by Mary Luckhurst and Emilie Morin, Palgrave, 2015.

 “Table on Stage: The Rise of the Messenger” in Performance Studies in Motion: International Perspectives and Practices in the Twenty-First Century edited by Sharon Aaronson-Lehavi, Atay Citron and David Zerbib, Methuen, 2014.

“Jews and Jewishness in Documentary Theatre” in Jews, Theatre, Performance in an Intercultural Context edited by Edna Nashon, Brille, 2012.

“The Dramaturgy of the Real” in The Dramaturgy of the Real on the World Stage edited by Carol Martin Palgrave/MacMillan, 2010.

“Living Simulations: The Use of Media in Documentary in the UK, Lebanon, and Israel” in Get Real edited by Alison Forsyth and Chris Megson, Palgrave/Macmillan, 2009.

“The Political is Personal: Feminism, Democracy and Antigone Project” in Feminist Theatrical Revisions of Classic Works, edited by Sharon Friedman, McFarland and Company, 2009.

“Reality Dance: American Dance Marathons” in Ballroom, Boogie, Shimmy Sham, Shake: A Social and Popular Dance Reader edited by Julie Malnig, University of Illinois Press, 2009.

“Justice Outside the Law” in Silence of God by Catherine Filloux, Seagull Books, 2009.

“After Paradise: The Open Theatre’s The Serpent, Terminal, and The Mutation Show,” in Restaging the Sixties: Radical Theatres and Legacies edited by James Harding and Cindy Rosenthal, University of Michigan Press, 2006.

“Divine Memory and Abject Reality: Miyagi Satoshi’s Tenshu Monogatari and Simizu Shinjin’s Bye Bye: The New Primitive,” in Modern Japanese Theatre and Performance edited by David Jortner, Keiko Iwai McDonald, and Kevin J. Wetmore, Jr., Lanham MD: Lexington Press, 2006. 

 “Classical in Difference: Isadora Duncan and Bill T. Jones,” in Gender Nonconformity, Race, and

 Sexuality edited by Toni Lester, The University of Wisconsin Press, 2002.

“Brecht, Feminism and Chinese Theatre,” in Brecht Sourcebook edited by Carol Martin and Henry Bial, Routledge, 2000.

“High Critics, Low Arts,” Moving Words: Re-Writing Dance edited by Gay Morris, Routledge, 1996.

“Bearing Witness: Anna Deavere Smith from Community to Theatre to Mass Culture,” in A Sourcebook of Feminist Theatre and Performance, edited by Carol Martin, 1996.


She is the General Editor of the book series “In Performance” published by Seagull Books, distributed by The University of Chicago Press.

Recent anthologies published: Citizens of Tokyo: Six Plays by Oriza Hirata edited by Cody Poulton (2019); Everything and Other Texts from Germany edited by Matt Cornish (2019). Stories Under Occupation and Other Plays (2019) edited by Samer Al-Saber and Gary English; The Intricate Art of Actually Caring and Other New Zealand Plays with an Introduction and edited by Sharon Mazer (2018); I Love XXX and Other Plays of Meng Jinghui with an Introduction and edited by Claire Conceison (2017); Unofficial Rolexana and Other Plays of Özen Yula edited by Seçil Reel with an Introduction by Marvin Carlson (2017). Tahrir Tales: Plays from the Egyptian Revolution edited by Mohammed Albakry and Rebecca Maggor with an Introduction by Nehad Salaiha (2016); How to Explain the History of Communism to Mental Patients and Other Plays Matei Visniéc (2015); Rechnitz; The Merchant's Contracts

Areas of Research/Interest

Theatre of the real; contemporary live performance, objects on stage; and house museums.

Honors and Awards

Martin has been awarded a Visiting Professor Fellowship at Tokyo University, Komaba Graduate School of Arts and Science, two Fulbright awards, an NEH, a Mellon, a De La Torre Bueno Special Citation for Dance Marathons, Best Issue of the Year by the Professional/Scholarly Publishing Division of the Association of American Publishers, and travel and research grants from the Adam Mickiewicz Institute, Trust for Mutual Understanding, and Tisch School of the Arts. Martin has been nominated for the teaching award at NYU.