Ph.D., Northwestern University. Cole is the author of Performing South Africa’s Truth Commission: Stages of Transition (2010) as well as Ghana’s Concert Party Theatre (2001). In addition to serving as past editor of Theatre Survey, Cole has co-edited the book Africa After Gender? (2007), a special issues of Theatre Survey on African and Afro-Caribbean Performance, and a special issue of TDR: The Drama Review entitled “Routes of Blackface.” Cole’s dance theater piece Five Foot Feat, created in collaboration with Christopher Pilafian, toured North America in 2002-2005. She has published articles in Africa, Boom: A Journal of California, Critical Inquiry, Dissidences: Hispanic Journal of Theory and Criticism, Disability Studies Quarterly,Research in African Literatures, Theatre, Theatre Journal, and TDR, as well as numerous chapters in edited volumes. Cole’s research has received funding from the National Humanities Center, National Endowment for the Humanities, Fund for U.S. Artists, American Association of University Women, ELA Foundation, and University of California Institute for Research in the Arts.
Recent work: Cole is currently working on a book on human rights and performance. She is also co-editing with Christopher Balme and Tracy C. Davis, Transnational Theatre Histories to be published with Palgrave MacMillan. She is currently serving as the Vice President for Publications for the American Society for Theatre Research. In Fall 2012, Cole served as the lead curator on the exhibit Fiat Lux Redux: Ansel Adams and Clark Kerr at the Bancroft Library, which also featured a video installation created by Cole and Kwame Braun entitled “Take Five.” This project included a campus-wide curricular engagement through Berkeley’s On the Same Page Program, which culminated in presentations to the UC Regents and Governor Brown in Spring 2013. For videos and press coverage, see: http://fiatlux-onthesamepage.berkeley.edu/. In 2012-13, Cole gave lectures at SFMOMA, Yerba Buena Center for the Arts, Brown University, University of Texas at Austin, and University of Indiana at Bloomington. She also convened an ongoing working group of graduate students in African Cultural Studies at Berkeley and Stanford. In June 2013, Cole concluded her tenure as Head of Berkeley’s Graduate Program in Performance Studies and assumed her new post as Department Chair.
in press “Reverberations of Testimony: South Africa’s TRC in Art and Media,” in Beyond Outreach. Transitional Justice, Culture and Society, edited by Clara Ramirez-Barat, International Center for Transitional Justice, New York: Social Science Research Council
2013 Special issue of TDR, “Routes of Blackface,” co-edited with Tracy C. Davis, vol. 57, no. 2.
2012 “The Blanket of Reconciliation in South Africa,” for special issue on commemoration and reconciliation to be published in Dissidences: Hispanic Journal of Theory and Criticism, vol 8, issue 4.
2012 “Of California: The Yosemite of Higher Education,” Boom: A Journal of California (Fall)
2012 “Wole Soyinka’s The Beatification of Area Boy as Neoliberal Kaleidoscope,” in Neoliberalism and Global Theatres: Performance Permutations, edited by Lara Nielsen and Patricia Ybarra, Palgrave Macmillan, 189-208.
2012 “American Ghetto Parties and Ghanaian Concert Parties: A Transnational Perspective on Blackface” in Burnt Cork: Traditions and Legacies of Blackface Minstrelsy, edited by Stephen Johnson, U of Massachusetts Press, pp. 223-253
2011 “Beautiful Me/We: Gregory Maqoma and Ubuntu,” African Arts. Winter, 2011, pp. 22-25.
2010 “History’s Thresholds: Stories from Africa,” in Representing the Past: Essays in the Historiography of Performance, edited by Charlotte Canning and Thomas Postlewait, University of Iowa Press, pp. 263-281.