Monday, November 8, 2010

Kim Marra, a board member for The University of Iowa Press, focuses her research on how key figures in American theatrical and social history performed their identities on and off the stage, mainly in New York City, in the decades from the Civil War through World War I.

Marra wrote about this topic in a book published by the UI Press in 2006 titled Strange Duets: Impresarios and Actresses in the American Theatre, 1865-1914. In the book, Marra, chair of the American Studies Department at Iowa, combines methods of cultural, gender, and sexuality studies with theatre history to explore the vexed mutual dependency between status-seeking Svengalis and their willing yet resistant leading ladies.

"My books have especially emphasized the ways sexuality intersects with race, ethnicity, class, and gender in the process of identity formation," Marra said.