Prof. Dr. Christel Stalpaert

Director of the research centre S:PAM

Short biography

Prof. Dr. Christel StalpaertChristel Stalpaert (° 1971) studied German philology and Theatre studies at Ghent University. She got promoted in 2002 with a doctoral dissertation defending a post-semiotic method of analysis, based on Gilles Deleuze's aesthetics of intensities (aesthesis) and Luce Irigaray's philosophy of embodied cognition and corporeality. Her dissertation offers an innovatory perspective on contemporary postrepresentative and postdramatic scopic regimes. Since 2003, Stalpaert is a lecturer in Theatre Studies (Performing and Media Arts) at Ghent University, and published numerous articles on theatre and performance in books and journals (Documenta, Ballet-Tanz, Arcadia, Eighteenth-century Life, a.o.). She is a member of the editorial board of Documenta, Theatre Topics (Amsterdam University Press) and Studies in Performing Arts & Media. She co-edited, among others, No beauty for me there where human life is rare: on Jan Lauwers' Theatre Work with Needcompany (2007) and Bastard or Playmate? Adapting Theatre, Mutating Media and the Contemporary Performing Arts (AUP 2012). Together with Prof. Katharina Pewny she is directing the research group S:PAM | Studies in Performing Arts & Media, and founder and convener of the associated research group for Postdramatic Aesthetics since 2007. Christel Stalpaert is an active member of international research groups Choreography and Corporeality (International Federation of Theatre Research), Performance and Philosophy (Performance Studies International) and Arbeitsgruppe Dramaturgie (Gesellschaft für Theaterwissenschaft).



Telephone: +32 (0)9 264 40 77

Address: Sint-Pietersnieuwstraat 41, 9000 Ghent Belgium (Technicum Block 4)

Office hours: Thursday, 9h-12h (with appointment only)


Christel Stalpaert's research is mostly focused on corporeality, performativity and intermediality (from the historical avant-garde to the present day) at the intersection point of philosophy and ethics. Within the research group S:PAM (Studies in Performing Arts & Media), her research is mainly concerned with five clusters: Technologies; Memories, Traumas & Conflicts; Histories; Dramaturgies and Practices. She is currently preparing a book publication titled Cultural Traumas and Violent Conflicts in the Performing Arts: Towards a Poetics of Failure (Routledge 2013) and the publication of the manual Tussen waarheid en waanzin: Geschiedenis van het moderne theater (Between truth and madness: History of modern theatre). For this she was granted a research sabbatical by the BOF (Bijzonder OnderzoeksFonds) during the academic year 2012-2013.

As both a promoter and co-promoter, Christel Stalpaert is coaching different research projects.


Academic service

  • Member of the faculty commission on internationalisation
  • Exchange coordinator for Art, Music and Theatre Studies
  • Member of the faculty board of Arts & Philosophy
  • Member of the environment commission (Ghent University)
  • Responsible for library collection for Theatre Studies
  • Coordinator apprenticeship for Theatre Studies
  • Member of the Instituut voor Publieksgeschiedenis (UGent/KULeuven)
  • Member of the research board of the University College Ghent

Public service

  • Member of the board of A Two Dogs Company (Kris Verdonck)