Elaine Cannell

Pronouns: she/her

Email: cannell@wisc.edu

Year Admitted: 2017


Elaine is a PhD candidate in literary studies who started at UW in 2017. Her research intersects American history, performance studies, queer and feminist theory, and literary studies to explore the co-constitutional impact of performance art and drama on social movement activism from the 1960s-1990s. Elaine’s work especially investigates the following two questions: first, within social movements like Women’s Liberation, how have embodied political gestures on both the street and the stage produced (and failed to produce) avenues for radical solidarity and change across race, class, gender, and sexuality? Further, how might investigating the reciprocal impact of protest and performance shed new light on moments of social transformation and unrest in contemporary American history, including both the revolutionary 1970s and our present moment?


Multiethnic US-American Literature & Culture after 1900, Theater & Performance Studies, Queer & Feminist Theory

Degree and Institution

BA in English Literature and Creative Writing, North Central College
MA in Literary Studies, Purdue University