Professor Jaffe-Berg studies the ways theatre functions as a laboratory for innovative explorations of language and multilingualism. Her most recent book is Commedia dell’ Arte and the Mediterranean: Charting Journeys and Mapping “Others” (Ashgate Publishing, Sept. 2015) published as part of the Transculturalisms, 1400-1700 series (www.ashgate.com/isbn/9781472418142). The book is a study of commedia dell’ arte as reflective of its culturally diverse Mediterranean world.
Her book The Multilingual Art of Commedia dell’Arte (Ottawa, Toronto, N.Y.: Legas, 2009) explores how theatre simultaneously foregrounds and critiques multilingualism in the early-modern period.
Along with her books, she has published articles on commedia dell’arte in: Theatre Survey, The Journal of Dramatic Theory and Criticism, Early Theatre,Translation Perspectives, The European Studies Journal, il cannocchiale, Text and Presentation, Metamorphoses, Testuale Critica, Quaderni d’Italinistica, and the anthologies International Dramaturgy: Translations & Transformations in the Theatre of Timberlake Wertenbaker (PIE-Peter Lang Press, 2008) and La terra di Babele: Saggi sul plurilinguismo nella cultura italiana, ed. Dario Brancato and Marisa Ruccolo (Legas, 2011).
She has also contributed a translation into Hebrew of Polygraph by the French-Canadian playwrights Robert Lepage and Marie Brassard to Canadian Plays: An Anthology (Jerusalem: Hebrew University Magnes Press, 2005).
In commedia dell’ arte’s performative “staging” of national and political boundaries Prof. Jaffe-Berg finds a precursor to contemporary experimental performances in which theatre addresses political hotbeds such as the Middle East. In representations of the Middle East language is often a key device used to probe issues of territoriality, exclusion and hybridity. Along with a conference on the subject of “staging the Middle East in theatre and through performance” (UCR, April 2009), Prof. Jaffe-Berg has published her work on the representation of the Middle East in the journals Text & Presentation, Scripta Mediterranea, Quaderni di Studi Arabi and in the anthologies Performance, Exile and ‘America’ (Palgrave Macmillan 2009) and Aesthetics in Present Future: The Arts and the Technological Horizon (Lexington Books, 2013).
For her work, Prof. Jaffe-Berg has been awarded a National Endowment for the Humanities grant as well as a grant from the Canadian embassy. She is a member of the Son of Semele Theatre Ensemble (SOSE), an Ovation award winning, LA-based theatre company. She is also a member and participant in the mobile artist collective Moving Matters Traveling Workshop. (movingmattersworkshops.com).
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