Patrick Anderson

Associate Professor

Associate Director, Critical Gender Studies Program (2014-2017)

Joint Appointment,
Department of Communication and
Department of Ethnic Studies


PhD, Performance Studies (Designated Emphasis in Women, Gender, and Sexuality), UC Berkeley
MA, Communication Studies and Cultural Studies, UNC Chapel Hill
BS, Performance Studies (High Distinction) and Anthropology (Honors), Northwestern


Patrick Anderson works at the interstices of performance studies and cultural studies, focusing in particular on the constitutive role of violence, mortality, and pain in the production and experience of political subjectivity. His work-in-progress includes a mixed-genre book on illness and memory, and a critical study of the role of empathy in contemporary US performance practice and inter-cultural discourse. He is a core member of the UC Office of the President Multi-Campus Research Group on International Culture and Performance

Anderson has worked as a director and actor in theater and film; as an anthropologist in Sri Lanka, Chicago, and New Mexico; and as an activist and organizer for anti-war groups in Sri Lanka, for the Berkeley Free Clinic in California, and for HIV/AIDS groups in various locations in the United States. He has previously taught undergraduate and graduate classes in performance and culture at Stanford University; the University of California, Berkeley; the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill; and the MFA program at the American Conservatory Theater (San Francisco).


So Much Wasted: Hunger, Performance, and the Morbidity of Resistance (Duke University Press, 2010)

Violence Performed: Local Roots and Global Routes of Conflict (Palgrave, 2009)

Empathy's Others (in process)

Autobiography of a Disease (in process)

Recent Essays

"Color Blind: Seeing Difference, Performing Slightlessness (Forthcoming)

"I Feel For You (Forthcoming)

"Architecture is not Justice: Seeing Guantánamo Bay (Performance in the Borderlands)

"The Master Plan (é-misferica)

"There Will Be No Bobby Sands in Guantánamo Bay (PMLA)

Viral Terror (é-misferica)

Anorexia Nervosa and the Problem of 'Men' (Women & Performance)

Radical Intimacy: Dwight Conquergood's Classroom (Cultural Studies)\

Trying Ordeal: Henry Tanner and Chris Burden in the Event of Subjectivity (Radical History Review)

On Feeding Tubes (TDR)

To Lie Down to Death for Days: The Turkish Hunger Strike, 2000-2003 (Cultural Studies)