Emily Underwood-Lee

Emily Underwood-Lee

Prof

Former affiliations
20152021

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Personal profile

Research interests

My work focuses on amplifying little heard personal stories from people whose voices may have been marginalised or overlooked and from the difference that hearing these stories can make in policy, practice, and daily life for both teller and listener. I have a particular interest in stories of the maternal, gender, health/illness, and heritage. 

My research focuses on contemporary feminist performance, autobiographical performance, and first person narratives in a variety of contexts including performance and the maternal and storytelling in health. I aim to contribute towards the greater understanding of how women both represent themselves and are represented in contemporary culture, with an aspiration to impact on both the social and material conditions of women.  My research is conducted through, and concerned with, contemporary performance practice. 

Expertise

I am Professor of Performance Studies at the University of South Wales, where I am based within the George Ewart Evans Centre for Storytelling and lead on a number of externally funded research projects including ‘Performance and the Maternal’ (supported by the AHRC), ‘Fireside Science’ (supported by the Wellcome Trust), and ‘Forty Voices, Forty Years’ (supported by the Heritage Lottery Fund). I also supervise postgraduate research students and teach across the drama and performance curriculum at both undergraduate and postgraduate levels including the Level 7 ‘Digital Storytelling for Health’ module, through which over 50 frontline healthcare professionals have trained to use stories with their service users to improve patient experience. With Dr Sarah Wallace, I lead the ‘Violence Against Women, Domestic Abuse, and Sexual Violence Research Network Wales’, co-convene the biannual ‘Storytelling for Health’ international conference with Prue Thimbleby (Swansea Bay University Health Board), and sit on the steering groups of both the 'WISERD Wellbeing Network' and the  ‘Wales Arts Health and Wellbeing Network’, which works closely with the Welsh Government CPG on Arts and Health.  Within the University of South Wales am part of the steering group of the George Ewart Evans Centre for Storytelling as well as a number of internal USW committees. 

Experience

I have published widely in peer-reviewed journals and academic books.  My most recent publications include the co-authored book  Maternal Performance: Feminist Relations (Palgrave 2021) with Dr Lena Šimić, the forthcoming edited collection, again with Dr Lena Šimić, Mothering: Processes, Practices and Performance (Routledge 2022), and a special edition of the peer-reviewed journal Storytelling Self Society ‘Storytelling for Health’ (2019). I am an experienced UKRI peer-reviewer.

Education/Academic qualification

PhD (2016), University of South Wales

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