San Marcos Mercury | Local News from San Marcos and Hays County, Texas

May 11th, 2009
Texas State student presents paper in Spain

STAFF REPORT

Teresa Stankiewicz, a Texas State graduate student in playwriting, presented a scholarly research paper at the Universidad de Huelva in Spain, on May 6.

Stankiewicz’s paper, entitled “Straight-jacket or Freedom: Transgender in the Life and Works of Rachilde,” is a study of transgender in the female French playwright’s influential work.

“As a playwriting student, I want to study as many plays and playwrights as possible,” said Stankiewicz. “I’m also interested in voices of gender and color. I was introduced to Ratchilde’s works by Dr. Sandra Mayo in our Backgrounds in Modern Drama class.”

Continued Stankiewicz, “I was fascinated by Ratchilde’s macabre plays and wanted to study her further. When I discovered she cross-dressed in the late 1890s, I knew I had to study her life and her work to discover how a woman could present herself as a man and become a celebrated author during those times.”

Stankiewicz earned second place at the Texas Educational Theater Association’s scholar debut competition on Jan 23 for a similar paper on the subject. Stankiewicz earned her BLS from St. Edward’s University and a MFA in Dance from the University of Illinois. She says she was attracted to Texas State due to its faculty and professionalism in on-stage productions.

“I attended theater productions and was so impressed with the professional level of quality that I knew I had to study theater here,” said Stankiewicz. “Our theater graduate advisor, Dr. Debra Charlton, encourages all of us to send our research papers to conferences for presentation.”

Continued Stankiewicz, “My interest in interdisciplinary studies and my research on Rachilde made the conference a perfect fit. I was notified via e-mail, and was surprised and thrilled that I would be considered for such an honor.”

Stankiewicz will graduate with a master’s in playwriting from Texas State in 2010. She plans to continue interdisciplinary study and earn a Ph.D to teach at the collegiate level while continuing to write plays.

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