Dr. Piet Defraeye is a Professor in the department of Drama, in the Faculty of Arts. His research focuses on Contemporary mise en scène (Quebec and Europe), Reception Theories and Theatre of Provocation.

2012 Research Cluster Grant


The representation of genocide
There has been considerable production of discourse that has to do with chronicling, remembering and responding to genocide-related events, like the Holocaust and more recent genocides like the Bosnian, or Rwandese massacres. Multiple decades later, we are still struggling with formats and contents that can render the impact and the enormity of these events on our cultural memories. The proposed research is twofold. A creative project involves the staging of Raymond Federmand’s experimental text The Voice in the Closet, which deals with the arrest by the Gestapo and disappearance of both his parents and two sisters in early 1945, when he was 12 years old, witnessed through the keyhole of a closet door, behind which he was hiding. The second part is a critical project, and involves the publication of a series of critical articles, or an edited volume, on the issue of representation and cultural discourse that deals with genocidal violence and trauma.

Keywords: genocide, violence, representation, realism, provocation, Rwanda, Balkan, narrative, trauma, cultural discourse


  • Arts: Drama, Anthropology, Music, Art & Design
  • Campus Saint-Jean
  • Augustana