Date of Award

Fall 12-1-2016

Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Liberal Arts


English & World Languages


College of Arts & Humanities

Committee Chair

Dr. David J. Eshelman

Program Director

Dr. Deborah Wilson


Navigating the complexities of naturalist dramatic literature proves to be a challenge under the best circumstances. How do we attempt to highlight the major themes and tenants of Naturalism through an educational theatre lens? What happens when the show is then double cast due to indecisiveness? How do we handle actors with personal trauma influencing their ability to work with vulnerability and physical contact? These questions and others were answered throughout this master’s thesis production of Miss Julie by August Strindberg. Through a process guided by social research and dramaturgical attention to detail, this director was able to explore a variety of different tools to reach actors and help them explore the vulnerabilities of their characters. This paper will also discuss the challenges of employing “liberatory pedagogy,” as detailed by Jonathan Cole, to the process of working with designers. This process allowed for an open opportunity to both collaborate with designers on their work, while also stepping back to allow their creative desires flourish. Our experience however, eventually challenged the tenants of teacher / student veracity.