Rebecca Rovit

Assistant Professor, Department of Theatre
Primary office:
785-864-5251 or 6295
Murphy Hall
Room 356
University of Kansas
1530 Naismith Drive
Lawrence, KS 66045


Curriculum Vitae

Ph.D., Florida State University
Script Analysis, Theatre History, Modern European Drama, Jewish Artistic production in Nazi Germany, Theatre and Genocide.

Rebecca Rovit joined the KU faculty in August 2009. She teaches Script Analysis, Theatre History, and topics related to historiography, German theatre, and performance and genocide at the undergraduate and graduate levels.

Dr. Rovit’s area of research expertise explores the cultural heritage of the Holocaust (1933-1945), including art produced by prisoner-artists in situ and the role of the performing arts under duress: within Nazi Germany, and in ghetto and camp settings.  Her micro-history, The Jewish Kulturbund Theatre Company in Nazi Berlin is forthcoming in September 2012 with Iowa University Press (Studies in Theatre History and Culture, ed. Thomas E. Postlewait).  She co-edited (with Alvin Goldfarb), Theatrical Performance during the Holocaust: Texts, Documents, Memoirs (The Johns Hopkins UP, 1999), a Finalist for the National Jewish Book Award. Her publications appear in such journals as American Theatre, PAJ, TDR, Theatre Survey, and The Journal of Holocaust and Genocide Studies. In spring 2013, she will guest edit a special section of the Journal of Dramatic Theory and Criticism entitled “Witnessing History: Performing Trauma.”

Dr. Rovit has received research fellowships from the American Philosophical Society; the ACLS, the U.S Holocaust Memorial Museum; the Jewish Memorial Foundation for Culture; and the Deutscher Akademische Austauchsdienst. She recently received a KU New Faculty Research Grant for a new project on post-1945 German theatre and performance. Besides lecturing independently in the U.S. and in Europe, she has taught courses in theatre history, play analysis, and modern drama at Illinois State University, and Indiana University.

She holds a Ph.D. in Theatre History from Florida State University, an MA in German language and literature from the University of Virginia, and a BA from Bucknell University.

In Memoriam

Reed Rankin ✝ 12/29/2019

The faculty and students in the Department Slavic Languages and Literatures are deeply saddened that one our undergraduate majors, Reed Rankin, passed away last week (12/29) in Fredonia, Kansas. Reed was a beloved student in the department and is fondly remembered by his peers and professors. He began studying Russian as a Freshman and stayed with a challenging but rewarding language for three and a half years, tackling introductory, intermediate, advanced levels, and even continuing his studies into his senior year with Russian for the Professions. We know that he was planning further study in Moscow in the next academic year, prior to matriculation at KU School of Law.

A thoughtful student, Reed often contributed insight and posed challenging questions in class. ​​ Reed’s dedication to the study of Russian language, culture, and history was tremendous and fueled by infectious curiosity. He showed great acumen in translating from Russian into English, always finding English-language equivalents for Russian cultural concepts through skillful use of one-liners from American films. We also treasured his ability to speak in fluid Russian about rural, farm life in Kansas, and the effects that natural phenomena, like floods, on a farming community. He was a pleasure to know and teach, and will be remembered for his kind and polite demeanor. Our thoughts are with Reed’s family at this time


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KU’s Center for Russian, East European and Eurasian Studies program is one of only 12 federally-funded national resource centers in the US
Only doctoral program in Slavic Languages and Literatures between the Mississippi and the West Coast
100% of graduate students in the Slavic program had funding in academic year 2012-13
KU's Libraries house over 500,000 volumes of Slavic books and electronic editions
Two of the department’s last four doctoral candidates have won a Fulbright grants to conduct dissertation research abroad