The University of Massachusetts Amherst
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Sara E. Jackson

Assistant Professor

Sara E Jackson, Assistant Professor, UMass Amherst

(413) 545-6686

Herter Hall 513

Sara E. Jackson's current book project, "The Problem of the Actress in Modern German Theater and Thought," focuses on the actress as a key figure in a complex of intersecting discourses concerned with gender and subjectivity in the nineteenth and early twentieth century. Her research is interdisciplinary, incorporating a diverse range of published and archival materials including literature, philosophical texts, sexological and criminological works, and theoretical treatises on the actress, as well as letter exchanges, autobiography, turn-of-the-century journal articles, and stage performances. Her dissertation, "Staging the Deadlier Sex: Dangerous Women in German Text and Performance at the Fin de Siècle," was awarded a 2013 Proquest Distinguished Dissertation Award at the University of Michigan as well as the Women in German Dissertation Prize for 2014. She is also co-founder of GTPR: German Theater and Performance Research.


PhD 2013, Germanic Languages and Literatures, University of Michigan Ann Arbor
MA 2004, German Languages and Literatures, University of Oregon
BA 2002, German and English, University of Oregon

Selected Publications

"Embodied Femmes Fatales: Performing Judith and Salome on the Modernist German Stage." Women in German Yearbook: Feminist Studies in German Literature & Culture. 31 (2015): 48-72.

"Rat Teeth not Roses: Aesthetics and Politics of the Grotesque in Gerhart Hauptmann's Naturallist Theater." German Studies Review 42.3 (2019): 427-445.

[Forthcoming] "Whose Lulu is it anyway? Performing through Dramaturgies of Excess." Theatre Journal (March 2020).

Research Areas

  • Theater, Drama and Performance
  • Women's and Gender Studies
  • Fin-de-Siècle Cultural Studies
  • Modernism/Modernity
  • Classical Reception
  • The History of Science (with a focus on the modern human sciences)

Courses Recently Taught

Mad Scientists
From the Grimms to Disney
Advanced German I
Crime & Criminals in Modern German Culture [GenEd: HS]
Vienna 1890-1914 [GenEd: AL]

Classical Reception in German Culture & Thought
Viennese Modernism
Bodies & Law
Theater, Nation & Self in 18th-Century German Culture