Audience Research

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The Routledge Theatre & Performance Series in Audience Research is an interdisciplinary forum for investigating audience response and spectatorship via empirical methodologies.

The primary aim of this series is to give scholars a dedicated place not simply to disseminate the findings of their empirical research, but to reflect on the relationship between findings and methodology: more specifically, between the specific ethical and practical features of methodological design, the information they have uncovered, and the knowledge they have produced as a result.

Projects in the series consider a number of questions, namely: How did the methods adopted and the questions asked draw out particular kinds of information? What are we able to know about audience response from this data, what is still hidden from us, and why? What are the study’s strengths and limitations? What does ‘rigour’ look like in audience research, and which of these requirements does this project fulfil? What were the epistemological, ethical, and methodological considerations of carrying out this research in this way, and what can your findings tell us about how we experience our shared social world? In this way we hope that the various books will begin to speak to each other, building up a richer picture over time of the complexities around understanding audience response.

This series offers a vital home for this fast-growing field. Proposals are welcomed either as monographs (likely full-length academic studies of around 80,000 words) or edited collections.

Kirsty Sedgman has a permanent role as full-time Lecturer in Theatre at the University of Bristol. She specializes in studying theatre audiences: engagement, experience, community, fandom, response. As one of the leading scholars bringing quali-quantitative audience studies approaches into theatre and performance studies, her work has been published in a variety of journals, from Theatre Research International to Contemporary Theatre Review.