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Empowerment Committee
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Response to COVID-19

In light of tough decisions about hiring freezes, furloughs, and even departmental suspensions due to COVID-19, ASTR’s Empowerment Committee offers this RESPONSE TO COVID-19. This collection of suggestions is to aid all ASTR faculty who can advocate for those whose jobs are at risk. This letter includes recommendations for those who are contingent faculty who would like to take action. At the same time, we wish to avoid adding additional uncompensated labor to contingent faculty and recognize the precarity of their employment. The Empowerment Committee was designed to advocate for an equitable and sustainable future of the fields of theatre and performance studies in higher education. 


The Empowerment Committee's work includes:

  • Informing the ASTR membership about how gender inequality plays out in our field in academic hierarchies and across different types of college/university contexts;
  • Amplifying our members’ voices on issues related to gender equality in higher education;
  • Supporting, mentoring, and empowering members who identify as women, trans, and gender non-conforming by learning about tools that
  • help achieve gender equality; and
  • Working with the Field Conversations Coordinators to advance conversations about gender equity in our field.

Committee Members

Vivian Appler (Chair),College of Charleston
Debra Caplan, Baruch College
Amy Cook, Stony Brook University
Chrystyna Dail, Ithaca College
Daphne Lei, University of California, Irvine
Carol MartinNew York University
Lynn Deboeck, University of Utah
Sarah Bay-Cheng, York University (representative from the Executicve Committee)


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