Dr. Kristen Murray holds a PhD from both the School of the Arts & Media and the School of Social Sciences at the University of New South Wales in Sydney, where she received an Australian Government International Postgraduate Research Scholarship. Dr. Murray also earned a Master of Creative Arts in Theatre (Directing) and a Master of Science in Psychology, following a Bachelor of Arts (Honours) in Psychology with a secondary emphasis in Theatre.
Dr. Murray engages in interdisciplinary analyses of mortality, disability and inequality in Shakespeare and twentieth-century theatre texts, with a specific interest in dramatic articulations and representations of loss. Her PhD dissertation examined scenes of physical demise in contemporary plays, seen in relation to sociological shifts in the medicalisation and mediatisation of death. In 2016, Dr. Murray’s book chapter on current American television was published in Taboo Comedy: Television and Controversial Humour. As a theatre practitioner, Dr. Murray has directed or acted in over twenty productions; she continues to guide and develop student performances, with a particular focus on Shakespeare.
In addition, Dr. Murray has worked extensively in public policy research, advising government departments and NGOs in Australia regarding inequalities in health and education services. In recent years, Dr. Murray has been involved in collaborative research on effective, inclusive health communication in hospitals. Her current research focuses on theatrical representations of mortality and bereavement.