Dr Caroline Wake

Lecturer; Australian Research Council DECRA Fellow
BA (Hons Class I) PhD (UNSW)
School of the Arts & Media


+ 61 2 9385 0720
Room 246E, Level 2, Robert Webster
Kensington Campus
Fields: Drama, Theatre and Performance Studies, Migration, Performing Arts and Creative Writing, Performance and Installation Art, Migrant Cultural Studies
Tags: Conserving Intangible Cultural Heritage, The Performing Arts (incl. Theatre and Dance)

Caroline Wake is an Australian Research Council DECRA Fellow and Lecturer in Theatre and Performance. Her research interests include contemporary Australasian performance; the participation and representation of refugees in performance and visual art; theatres of the real; and theories and practices of witnessing.

She is co-editor, with Bryoni Trezise, of Visions and Revisions: Performance, Memory, Trauma (2013) and author of articles in Theatre Research International, Text & Performance Quarterly, New Theatre Quarterly and Modern Drama, among others. She is also Deputy Editor of Performance Paradigm journal, Series Advisor (Australia) to Methuen Modern Classics, and reviewer for RealTime arts magazine.

She currently holds two ARC grants: her DECRA, Restoring the Contemporary: Remembering Live Art at the Performance Space, which examines the archive of the Performance Space, Sydney, as a microcosm of how contemporary aesthetic practices have shifted over the past thirty years (DE150100553); and a Discovery Project, Power and Performance: Revaluing Theatre in the 21st Century, led by Helena Grehan (Murdoch) and jointly held with Eddie Paterson (Melbourne) and Edward Scheer (UNSW) in Australia as well as Janelle Reinelt (Warwick) in the UK and Peter Eckersall (Graduate Center, CUNY) in the US. This project considers the politics of value and the value of performance in the post-political age (DP160100272).

For more information, see her profiles on academia.edu https://unsw.academia.edu/CarolineWake and RealTime arts magazine http://www.realtimearts.net/feature/Contributor_Profiles/11616

Forthcoming publications include:

Book Chapters

Wake, C, 2015, 'Performance in the Refugee Determination Process', in Emma Cox (ed.), Staging Asylum: Contemporary Australian Plays about Refugees. Sydney: Currency Press. n. pag. [e-book].



I am currently research-only but have taught across theatre, performance and media studies.

Within theatre and performance studies, I have previously taught in:

  • ARTS1120 Introduction to Theatre and Performance
  • ARTS1121 Reading Performance
  • ARTS2120 Writing for Performance
  • ARTS2121 Critical Perspectives in Theatre and Performance
  • ARTS3124 Performance Production 2: Collaborative Making

Within media studies, I have previously convened:

  • ARTS2091 Mobile Cultures

and taught in:

  • ARTS2090 Publics and Publishing in Transition 
  • ARTS3091 Advanced Media Issues: New Media, Cultural and Social Change

I also give occasional guest lectures and seminars in courses such as ARTS3120 Studies in World Performance, ARTS3289 Documentary Film and HIstory, and ARTS4201 Uses of Theory.

Honours and prizes

I am the recipient of the 2014 Marlis Thiersch Prize for excellence in English-language articles anywhere in the world in the broad field of drama, theatre and performance studies. The article is "Between Repetition and Oblivion: Performance, Testimony, and Ontology in the Refugee Determination Process." Text & Performance Quarterly 33.4 (2013): 326-343 and is available here or here. The judges' comments are available here.

Affiliations and membership

Board Member

PSi (Performance Studies international) (2016-)


ADSA (Australasian Association for Theatre, Drama, and Performance Studies)
ASTR (American Society for Theater Research)
ATHE (Association for Theatre in Higher Education)
FIRT (International Federation for Theatre Research)
MLA (Modern Language Association)

Related links

Related news

Other information

External Grants

Australian Research Council, DECRA Fellowship (2015-17)
Restoring the Contemporary: Remembering Live Art at The Performance Space (DE150100553, $327,849)

Australian Research Council, Discovery Project (2016-18)
Power and Performance: Revaluing Theatre in the 21st Century (DP160100272, $137,455)
Lead CI Helena Grehan (Murdoch); Chief Investigators Eddie Paterson (Melbourne) and Edward Scheer (UNSW) in Australia; Partner Investigators Janelle Reinelt (Warwick) in the UK and Peter Eckersall (Graduate Center, CUNY) in the US.