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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.)


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.