Dr Emily Underwood-Lee’s work focuses on amplifying little heard personal stories from people whose voices may have been marginalised or overlooked and from the difference that hearing these stories can make in policy, practice, and daily life for both teller and listener. She has a particular interest in stories of the maternal, gender, health/illness, and heritage.
Emily is Associate Professor of Performance Studies at the University of South Wales. She is based within the George Ewart Evans Centre for Storytelling, where she leads on a number of externally funded research projects including ‘Performance and the Maternal’ (supported by the AHRC), ‘Fireside Science’ (supported by the Wellcome Trust), and ‘Forty Voices, Forty Years’ (supported by the Heritage Lottery Fund). Emily supervises postgraduate research students and teaches across the drama and performance curriculum at both undergraduate and postgraduate levels including leading the Level 7 ‘Digital Storytelling for Health’ module, through which over 50 frontline healthcare professionals have trained to use stories with their service users to improve patient experience.
With Dr Sarah Wallace, Emily leads the ‘Violence Against Women, Domestic Abuse, and Sexual Violence Research Network Wales’ and sits of the steering group of the George Ewart Evans Centre for Storytelling. In public life Emily co-convenes the biannual ‘Storytelling for Health’ international conference with Prue Thimbleby (Swansea Bay University Health Board) and sits on the steering group of the ‘Wales Arts Health and Wellbeing Network’.
Emily has published in peer-reviewed journals and academic books. Her most recent publications include the co-authored book with Dr Lena Šimić Maternal Performance: Feminist Relations (Palgrave 2021), the forthcoming edited collection, again with Dr Lena Šimić, Mothering: Processes, Practices and Performance (Routledge 2022) and a special edition of the peer-reviewed journal Storytelling Self Society ‘Storytelling for Health’ (2019).