Senior Lecturer

Dr Carolyn Shapiro received her MA and PhD in Performance Studies from New York University (2004), and received a BA in Comparative Literature and History of Art from the University of Pennsylvania in 1987. She taught in the English department at Baruch College, City University of New York, from 1996-1999, before moving to the UK in 1999. She has been lecturing in critical theory and history and cultural studies at Falmouth since 2002, across disciplines, including: BA(Hons) History of Modern Art and Design; MA 20th Century Art and Design; BA(Hons) Advertising; MA Creative Advertising; BA(Hons) Illustration, MA Authorial Practice; MA Communication Design; MA Graphic Design; BA(Hons) English and Creative Writing; and BA(Hons) Film Studies.

She currently holds the position of Course Coordinator for Critical Studies for BA(Hons) Illustration and is primary tutor for the theories and discourses module for MA Authorial Practice, and has been the primary critical theory tutor on the Visual Culture and Communication module for the MA Creative Advertising for 18 years. She is lead supervisor for Phd candidates Matthew Lunt, Louise Bell, and Jeanie Sinclair at Falmouth University. In October 2013, Carolyn received a substantial research and innovation allocation from the Academy of Innovation and Research at Falmouth University to put on coordinate the international four- day conference, Performing Objects, which took place across multiple venues between Falmouth and Penryn campuses, and included papers, performances, and workshops for both students and the general public. Coordinated with Performing Objects was in conjunction with the art exhibit "Felicitous Objects" at The Poly, Falmouth gallery, which Carolyn co-curated with Maria Christoforidou.

Carolyn’s current teaching embeds students’ critical writing into module delivery and undergraduate student symposiums such as “Disquiet Feminisms” (spring 2019) and “Decolonise Now!” (Spring 2021), for the Falmouth School of Art. Her interest in the growing theoretical area of Illustration Research comprises a guiding force in all of her teaching, including that of post-graduate research. Working with her Falmouth University colleagues and colleagues from the Illustration Research network, Carolyn will be one of the coordinators for the Illustration Research Symposium to be held in July 2022 at Falmouth University, the theme of which will be “Transitus.”

Carolyn's community outreach projects include serving as Education Officer for Kehillat Kernow, the Jewish congregation of Cornwall, working with primary, secondary and HE students on Jewish cultural and religious themes.

External Links

Contact details

Telephone 01326 213769



Year Qualification Awarding body
1987 BA Comparative Literature and History of Art University of Pennsylvania
1993 MA Performance Studies Tisch School of the Arts, New York University
2004 PhD Performance Studies Tisch School of the Arts, New York University

Honors and awards

Year Description

The Michael Kirby Award for Most Distinguished PhD dissertation, New York University

Membership of external committees

member, International Society for Utilitarian Studies; member, College Art Association

Research Interests

Research interests and expertise

  • History and psychoanalysis
  • Online feminist pedagogies
  • Decolonising art and design
  • Performance Studies and Performance Philosophy
  • The Auto-Icon of Jeremy Bentham; Bentham's theory of language; Bentham's queer body
  • Object Theatre and Object Oriented Ontology and 3-D illustration
  • philosophical theories on automata and philosophy
  • Illustration and the Uncanny
  • Animal-human relations in Studio Ghibli
  • Freemasonry: illustrations, rituals, and theatre
  • Mahj Jong and competition among Jewish American women
  • Deconstruction in and the visual arts; the Future Anterior as visual trope
  • Wacky Packages: Consumer critique in the 1970s
  • Facebook as Autothanatography

Research Outputs

Publications and research outputs


Shapiro, Carolyn ORCID logoORCID: (2022) Vicissitudes and Their Inscriptions. History of the Present: Psychoanalysis and History, 12 (1). ISSN 2159-9785 (In Press)
[thumbnail of FinalSubmissionFURRBioShapiroCarolynVicissitudes and their Inscriptions.pdf]

Shapiro, Carolyn ORCID logoORCID: (2018) Solicitations, or, Asking for it: The Violations of Anish Kapoor's *Dirty Corner*. MAI Feminism, Autumn 2018 (2). ISSN 2003-1672
[thumbnail of CarolynShapiroSolicitationsFURR.pdf]

Shapiro, Carolyn ORCID logoORCID: (2016) After the Gold Rush: Make America Great Again. Disegno, 14. ISSN unknown (In Press) Item availability may be restricted.
[thumbnail of DesignoMAGA1.docx]

Wyatt, Carolyn ORCID logoORCID: (2012) Exquisite Pain. Benzanoe, 65. ISSN XXXX-XXXX
[thumbnail of RR_exquisite pain_030314.pdf]

Book Section

Shapiro, Carolyn ORCID logoORCID: (2020) Bentham's Image: The Corpo-Reality Check. In: Bentham and the Arts. UCL Press, London. ISBN 9781787357389 (In Press)
[thumbnail of chapter to be published in a book, Bentham and The Arts, to be published Spring 2020 by UCL Press]

Shapiro, Carolyn ORCID logoORCID: (2019) Historical and Philosophical Relations between the Uncanny and Illustration. In: A Companion to Illustration: Art and Theory. Blackwell Companions to Art History . Wiley Blackwell, Oxford, pp. 444-466. ISBN 978-1-119-18553-6
[thumbnail of "Historical and Philosophical Relations between the Uncanny and Illustration" chapter to be published in the Wiley Blackwell Companion Guide to Illustration, ed. Alan Male, forthcoming.]

Shapiro, Carolyn ORCID logoORCID: (2019) “Happiness, Dead and Alive: Object Theatre as Philosophy of the Encounter,” in the forthcoming book Second Nature: Comic Performance and Philosophy. In: Second Nature: Comic Performance and Philosophy. Rowman & Littlefield, London, UK. ISBN N/A (In Press)
[thumbnail of ShapiroCarolynFURRFINALSUBMISSIONHappinessCShapiro[2].pdf]

Conference or Workshop Item

Shapiro, Carolyn ORCID logoORCID: (2017) Illustration, Performativity and the Explicit Body of Marie-Antoinette in Eighteenth-Century French Pornographic Pamphlets. In: Illustrating Identity/ies, 8-10 November, 2017, University of Lorraine, Nancy, France. (Unpublished)
[thumbnail of ShapiroIllustration, Performativity, Marie Antoinette .docxNancyConference.pdf]

Shapiro, Carolyn ORCID logoORCID: (2017) On Objects. In: "On Objects," sponsored by The Forum for European Philosophy, 31 January 2017, Wolfson Theatre, London School of Economics.
[thumbnail of CarolynShapiroLSEFURR.docx]

Shapiro, Carolyn ORCID logoORCID: (2016) Dirty Corner’s Elicitations and, “Myth Today,” today. In: Society for European Philosophy, August 23-26, 2016, Regent's University, London. (Unpublished)
[thumbnail of EuroPhilosophyTalk25August2016Regent'sUniversity.docx]

Shapiro, Carolyn ORCID logoORCID: (2016) Nature as Neighbour: Landscape’s Relation to the Human in Studio Ghibli Films. In: Lanugage, Landscape and the Sublime, 29-30 June 2016, Dartington College, Devon.
[thumbnail of GhibliFURR.pdf]

Shapiro, Carolyn ORCID logoORCID: (2016) Deconstructive Tendencies in Bentham's Philosophy of Language: Reading the (per)Happiness in Felicific Calculus. In: The Bentham Project Seminar Series, 11 March 2016, Faculty of Laws, University College London. (Submitted)
[thumbnail of BenthamPerhapinessPPMarch11UCLFURR.pptx]

Shapiro, Carolyn ORCID logoORCID: (2014) Performing Objects/Performing Philosophy. In: Performance Philosophy, April 1-12, 2015, University of Chicago. (Unpublished)
[thumbnail of powerpoint presentation]

Shapiro, Carolyn ORCID logoORCID: (2014) (Per)happiness, Performative Language and the Figure of the Automaton: reading the deconstructive wedge of Felicific Calculus. In: Well-Being Reconsidered: the International Society for Utilitaran Studies, 19-22 August 2014, Yokohama University.
[thumbnail of PerhappinessShapiroISUSpresentationYokohama.docx]

Wyatt, Carolyn ORCID logoORCID: (2012) "Farther Uses of the Dead to the Living": Reading the Felicity of the Body in Jeremy Bentham's Auto-Icon. In: International Society for Utilitarian Studies, 8 - 11 August 2012, Stern School of Business, New York University, USA.
[thumbnail of RR_Farther uses of the dead to the living_100913_nid162.pdf]

Wyatt, Carolyn ORCID logoORCID: (2011) Reading the work of Matthew Barney: Disability as Deconstruction. In: Disability and The Arts, 28 October 2011, Cornwall College, St Austell.
[thumbnail of Matthew barney CWS.doc.pdf]


Shapiro, Carolyn ORCID logoORCID: (2015) Facebook as Graveyard. [Artwork] (Unpublished)
[thumbnail of artists' book]


Wylde, Gillian ORCID logoORCID:, Shapiro, Carolyn ORCID logoORCID:, Christoforidou, Maria and Chapman, Neil ORCID logoORCID: (2017) FOMO: Falmouth Art Publishing Fair 2017. UNSPECIFIED.
[thumbnail of documentation of event] [thumbnail of documentation of event]

Research Students

Current research students

Completed PhD supervisions:

  • Matthew Lunt, “Harry Penhaul and the subject of the real: photographing post-war Cornish community through a Lacanian lens,” 2019.
  • Jeanie Sinclair, We came for the parties: performing art community, archive and place in St Ives, 1945 – 1970, 2021.

Current PhD supervisions:

  • Louise Bell, “Illustration as empathic attention: using creative practice as an other way of knowing place” (DoS)
  • David Greeves, “Embodied Performative practices in the Delivery of Vertical Dance Pedagogy” (supervisory committee)
  • Sara Hougham-Slade, “A practice-based examination of weight and correlative movement through non-digital ‘Haptic Illustrative Devices’ as textual aids” (supervisory committee)
  • Tim Jones, “Artful Conversations: Establishing an approach to using the visual arts for enabling communication in the Memory Café” (DoS)
  • Dan O’Carroll, “Writing the New Heritage” (DoS)
  • Gilly Nevin, “Placental Textuality in the art practices of Helen Chadwick and philosophy of Luce Irigaray” (DoS)
  • Drew Turner, “Stories of Home: ethnographic illustration research methodology” (supervisory committee)
  • Ian Walden, “How to end your life in the 21st Century: Facilitating cultural and sociological discursivity around end of life choices” (supervisory committee)

Previous student supervision

Gemma Anderson, PhD confirmation committee; numerous MA degrees (MA 20th Century Art and Design; MA Creative Advertising)

Number of research students supervised to completion


Research degrees examined

Examined PhDs:

  • Ann Roberts, “Painting by mouth: art, modernity and disability. Bartram Hiles (1872-1927)” Falmouth College of Art, 2012.
  • Jason Cleverly, “The artist-designer: situating creative interaction and interpretation in the museum” Falmouth University, 2017.
  • Francis Williams, “Looking away: failure, embarrassment and mis-attention in a performance-related artistic practice” Falmouth University, 2020.
  • Tom Milnes, “Spatially-immersive Networked Composites: A Media Archaeology of the Photogrammetric Image through Glitch Practice” Falmouth University, 2021.

Number of research degree examinations



Areas of teaching

  • 20th century consumer culture
  • Advertising and the consumer subject
  • creative advertising and digital media theory
  • critical studies: feminist and queer theory
  • Critical Theory (structuralism
  • Critical theory of graphic design
  • Cultural Studies
  • deconstruction
  • dissertation supervision
  • Expository Writing
  • Film Studies
  • Gender Studies
  • History of Art & Design
  • History of Modern Art and Design
  • Modernism/Postmodernism
  • Performance Studies
  • post-colonial and de-colonial theory
  • post-structuralism
  • psychoanalysis
  • Semiotics
  • sequential narrative
  • Social Networking and Subjectivity
  • The language of film

Courses taught

  • CriticalStudies (BA Illustration); Visual Culture and Communication (MA Creative Advertising); "Why We Buy" (BA Advertising); "Body Gender Language" (BA English with Creative Writing); Dissertation Supervision
  • Theories and Discourses (MA Authorial Practice)
  • Dissertation BA Illustration

Professional Engagement

Social, community and cultural engagement

Conference coordinator, "Performing Objects," October 17-20 2013, Falmouth University, in collaboration with The Performance Centre, The Poly, Falmouth Gallery, Kneehigh Theatre

Engagement with professional associations and societies

The Bentham Project, University College London

Professional esteem indicators

Year Description

Invited lecturer, University College Faculty of Law, on the topic of Jeremy Bentham's philosophy of language


Invited lecturer, University College Faculty of Law, as part of the Jeremy Bentham and the Arts lecture series