Englisches Seminar

Dan Poston, PhD/MFA

Research Fellow

Dan Poston is an interdisciplinary literary, performance, and theatre scholar in the English/American Studies Department and the International Literatures Program.  He manages the ERASMUS+/CIVIS exchange programs for International Literatures.


Ph.D. Theatre and Performance Studies, Chancellor’s Fellow, CUNY Grad Center, 2018
M.F.A. Writing, MFA Fellow, Bard College, 2008
M.A. Myth, Performance, and Behavior, Koopenaal Fellow, NYU Gallatin School, 2007
B.A. English and American Literatures, Harvard University, 2004


Dr. Poston is an expert in global and transcultural theatre histories as well as a specialist in British and American literature of the long eighteenth century.  His first larger research project concerned the genealogy of U.S. presidential performance and the origins of the cultural role of the modern head-of-state more broadly.  One set of findings from that project will be published in his first book (under contract), a comprehensive intellectual biography of the early eighteenth-century politician and writer, Joseph Addison.  His second, in-progress book project examines the tight nexus of theatre, philosophy, and cultural history in forming the transatlantic archetypes of the ideal national leader.  Other specific active research interests include Native American theater (and its historical antecedents), Haudenosaunee diplomacy, psychoanalysis, and Elizabethan performance.

Creative Work

Dr. Poston’s plays have been performed at Stanford University and New York University.  His art-world musical collaborations with Ei Arakawa have appeared in many galleries (Max Meyer, Taka Ishii, etc.), museums (MoMA, Museum Ludwig, Dallas Art Museum, Stedelijk Museum, etc.), festivals (Berlin Biennale, Art Basel, etc.), and outdoor installations (NYC High Line, Münster Sculpture Projects, etc.).  Some of the musical scripts and lyrical settings for those collaborations are published, with critical commentary, in Ei Arakawa: Performance People (Ed. Eva Birkenstock, Koenig Books, 2021, pp. 22-4, 176-183, 186-190, 237, 244-277.)  Dr. Poston has trained and practiced in a variety of acting and performance composition techniques, including Butoh and the SITI Company’s Viewpoints/Suzuki.  He has also staged many large political events as a member of the 2008 Obama National Advance Team and 2009 Presidential Inaugural Committee.



  • “Silent Enlightenment: Joseph Addison and Newton’s New Optics,” Silence in eighteenth-century arts, history, and philosophy, edited by Francesca Saggini with Dan Poston and Adam Schoene, Paris: Honoré Champion, 2023 (forthcoming)
  • “Joseph Addisons Cato und die Poetik der Bewunderung,“ ZwischenSpielZeit. Das Theater der Frühaufklärung, edited by Jörn Steigerwald and Leonie Süwolto, Munich: Fink, 2021 (forthcoming)


  • “Still on Classic Ground: Joseph Addison’s Italy,” Addison in Europe / Addison en Europe, edited by Claire Boulard-Jouslin and Klaus-Dieter Ertler, Berlin: Peter Lang, 2020, pp. 67-77
  • “Enlightenment Subjectivity and the Hamlet Paradigm in The Lancaster Treaty of 1744,” Drama & Theater: Festschrift zu Ehren von Bernhard Greiner, edited by Eckart Goebel and Max Roehl, Tübingen: Stauffenburg, 2020, pp. 145-176


University of Tübingen (Postdoctoral Fellow)

  • “Indigenous North American Theatres, from 1400 to today,” seminar, Winter 2021-2
  • “Recent Restagings of Classic German Dramas,” online seminar, Winter 2021-2
  • “Philip Sidney: Poetry and Masques,” online seminar, Summer 2021
  • “Classics of Psychoanalysis,” online graduate seminar, Winter 2020-1
  • “Wordsworth,” online seminar, Summer 2020
  • “Ensemble Theatre Composition,” online praxis seminar, Summer 2020
  • “Transcultural Theatre,” graduate seminar, Winter 2019-20
  • “Global Theatre Paradigms: Histories, Theories, and Practices,” seminar, Summer 2019
  • “Staging Native America,” seminar, Winter 2018-9
  • “Restoration Theatre,” seminar, Summer 2018
  • “Three Modernist Lives: Woolf, Stein, and McCullers,” seminar, Winter 2017-8
  • “Performance Studies: Key Texts,” seminar, Summer 2017
  • “Liberty & Form: The British Essay from Bacon to Wollstonecraft,” seminar, Winter 2016-7
  • “Special Relation: 18th-Century British and American Theatre,” seminar, Summer 2016
  • “Theatre and State Politics: The Head of State from Richard II to House of Cards,” seminar, Winter 2015-6

Baruch College (Graduate Teaching Fellow)

  • “Speech Communication,” lecture/workshop, Fall 2012-Spring-2015

Technische Universität Berlin (Visiting Fellow)

  • “Performative Knowledge and Philosophy: Plato to Butler and Rancière,” graduate seminar, Spring 2014

Universidad Nacional de San Martín, Buenos Aires (Adjunct Lecturer)

  • “Public Speaking” and “Creative Writing,” lectures/workshops, Spring 2008

Talks and Presentations


  • “Fainlove: Ironic Sublimation in The Tender Husband,” American Society for Theatre Research, San Diego, October 2021
  • “The Theatrical King: Staging Civic Religion from the English Monarchy to the American Presidency,” Center for Religion, Culture, and Society, Universität Tübingen, February 2021
  • “Sublimation, Again,” American Society for Theatre Research, Online Working Group, November 2020


  • “Annotating Silence: Wordsworth,” International Conference on Annotating Literature, Tübingen University, August 2019
  • “Joseph Addison’s Italy,” International Conference on Addison and Europe, Université Sorbonne Nouvelle, Paris, December 2018
  • “Addisonian Sovereignty: The Body’s Silent Persistence through the Delightful Imagination,” International Society for Eighteenth-Century Studies Seminar for Early Career Eighteenth-Century Scholars, Università della Tuscia, Viterbo, September 2018
  • “The Soul’s Site-Specific Performance: Joseph Addison’s Unique Theory of Theatricality,” Association for Theatre in Higher Education, Boston, August 2018 
  • “English, Iroquois, German: Historically Staging Conrad Weiser’s Interpretative Work in the 1744 Lancaster Treaty,” International Federation for Theatre Research, University of Arts, Belgrade, July 2018 
  • “Rome-ing the Suburbs: Joseph Addison’s Cato and the reception of Rome in 18th-Century
  • London,” Abiding Cities, Remnant Sites, CUNY Graduate Center, November 2014
  • “Promethean Expositions and the Technē of Existence,” a collaborative international lecture performance, Congress of the Gesellschaft für Theaterwissenschaft, Ruhr-Universität, Bochum, September 2014