Dr Trish McTighe BA, MA, HDip, PhD,

Photograph of Dr Trish McTighe

Department of Drama and Theatre Arts
Lecturer in Theatre

Contact details

Department of Drama and Theatre Arts
University of Birmingham
Selly Oak Visual Arts Centre (SOVAC)
The Old Library
998 Bristol Road
Selly Oak

My work focuses on Beckett’s theatre aesthetics and the history of the author’s work in performance. I also engage in research in gender studies. 


  • PhD, Queen’s University Belfast
  • Higher Diploma in Education, National University of Ireland, Galway
  • MA in Drama and Theatre Studies, National University of Ireland, Galway
  • BA Joint Honours English/Philosophy, National University of Ireland, Galway


Before joining the University of Birmingham in 2016, I earned my PhD from Queen’s University, Belfast in 2010 and was a postdoctoral researcher on the AHRC funded Staging Beckett project at the University of Reading. 


I am the convenor for the second-year core module Politics of Performance. I also convene Multimedia Beckett, Gender in Performance and have convened a module on Irish theatre and culture. I contribute teaching to other modules across the department including first year core modules Performance: Theory, Practice and Critique and The Dramatic Medium.

Postgraduate supervision

  • The work of Samuel Beckett
  • Festivals and literary tourism  
  • Feminism and gender studies

Find out more - our PhD Drama and Theatre Studies  page has information about doctoral research at the University of Birmingham.


My current research involves two distinct strands. One emerges from my work on Beckett and seeks to examine the relationship between the arts and the economy in the latter half of the twentieth and twenty-first century, with particular emphasis on literary tourism and the festivalisation, so-called, of culture. I am in the process of establishing a research network which will address key questions about the ways in which the arts and tourism interact in Ireland (and elsewhere). I have a number of publications forthcoming on the festivalisation of Beckett’s work in Ireland and internationally.

The other strand of my research has to do with the politics of cleaning in contemporary performance. Rooted in what performance artist Mierle Laderman Ukeles has termed ‘maintenance art’, this project seeks to trace the ways in theatre and performance has used the labour of cleaning as a mode of exploring inequality, class and gender. I am currently working on ways to trace the politics and temporality of the act of cleaning in contemporary performance.

Other activities

I am currently the postgraduate admissions tutor for the Department of Drama. I will be leaving this role in January to become Staff-Student Liaison Officer.



  • The Haptic Aesthetic in Samuel Beckett’s Drama (New York: Palgrave, 2013)

Edited collection

  • (with David Tucker), Staging Beckett in Ireland and Northern Ireland and Staging Beckett in Great Britain (London: Bloomsbury-Methuen, forthcoming 2016)

Chapters in Books

  • “‘Be again, be again”: The Gate’s Beckett Country”, in The Gate Theatre, Dublin: Inspiration and Craft, ed. by David Clare, Des Lally, & Patrick Lonergan (Dublin: Carysfort Press, 2018)
  • ‘“Getting known: Beckett, Ireland and the Creative Industries in That was us: Contemporary Irish Theatre and Performance ed. by Fintan Walsh (London: Oberon, 2013), 157-172

Articles in Journals

  • 'Vessel and Nation: Company SJ's Beckett in the City, The Women Speak', Performing Ireland (2017)
  • ‘In Caves, in Ruins: Place as Archive at the Happy Days Beckett Festival’, Contemporary Theatre Review (forthcoming 2018)
  • ‘Museum, Furniture, Men: The Queer Ecology of I Am My Own Wife,’ Modern Drama 60.2  (2017), 150-168
  • (with Anna McMullan), ‘Samuel Beckett and Irish Scenography,’ Irish University Review, 45.1 (2015), 141-156
  • (with Anna McMullan) ‘Samuel Beckett, the Gate Theatre Dublin, and the Contemporary Irish Independent Theatre Sector: Fragments of Performance History,’ Breac Digital Journal of Irish Studies 2 (2014), <http://breac.nd.edu/articles/48971-samuel-beckett-the-gate-theatre-dublin-and-the-contemporary-irish-independent-theater-sector-fragments-of-performance-history/> [accessed 29July 2014]
  • (with Anna McMullan, David Pattie and David Tucker) ‘Staging Beckett: Constructing Performance Histories,’ Journal of Beckett Studies 23.1 (2014), 11-33
  • ‘Acts of Estrangement: Reading the Psoriatic-skin,’ Nyx, A Noctournal 8 (2013), 6-15
  •  ‘Noli me Tangere: Haptic Certitude in Beckett’s Eh Joe and Nacht und Träume,’ Modern Drama 55.3 (2012), 216-229
  • ‘Haptic Interfaces: The Live and Recorded Body in Beckett’s Eh Joe on Stage and Screen,’ Samuel Beckett Today/Audjourd’hui 22 (2010), 463-475.

View all publications in research portal