Faculty Profile

William E. Kleb

William E. Kleb taught theatre history, critical theory and playwriting in the Department of Theatre & Dance from 1974 to 1994, when he retired. During that time, he served on numerous department and university administrative committees and chaired the graduate program. Prior to that he taught in and chaired the Creative Arts Interdisciplinary Program at San Francisco State University, and, simultaneously, chaired the Film Department there (1971-74).He has taught at other institutions, including Yale University where he began his career as a Carnegie Teaching Fellow in the English Department (1961-62); he received his B.A. from Yale (1961) and a DFA from the Yale School of Drama (1970).

During the 1970s, Professor Kleb was active in the avant-garde theatre scene in San Francisco, writing about performance art in numerous publications including Alternative Theatre, Artweek, and Performing Arts Journal. At UCD, he focused on theatre history and criticism, specializing in the plays of Sam Shepard. Among the journals in which he has published articles and reviews are Theatre Survey, Theatre History Studies, Journal of the History of Sexuality, Contemporary Theatre Review and [Yale] Theatre (for which he served as contributing editor). His essays have appeared in edited books such as American Dreams: The Imagination of Sam Shepard, American Playwrights Since 1945: A Guide to Scholarship, Criticism and Performance, and Confronting Tennessee Williams’s A Streetcar Named Desire: Essays in Critical Pluralism.

Kleb’s chief interest throughout his career was (and remains) his students and classroom teaching.

Since his retirement, Professor Kleb has lived in New York and Santa Fe, New Mexico. He returned to San Francisco in 2006 where he now resides.

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