Sasha Colby

Director, Graduate Liberal Studies, Associate Professor, Department of English

Areas of interest

Sasha Colby's research asks how literary and visual modernism (1880-1950) can be newly explored, represented, and shared through the creation of theatre, literary nonfiction, and fiction. Her most recent book, Staging Modernist Lives: H.D., Mina Loy, Nancy Cunard, Three Plays and Criticism (McGill-Queen's UP, 2017; funded by SSHRC) uses performance scripts to critically investigate auto/biographical writing of the avant-garde within the social, political, and artistic currents of modernism. Sasha performs all twenty-five roles in the one-woman play about H.D. and has toured the performance in North America, Europe, and Asia. Past SSHRC-funded projects include Stratified Modernism: The Poetics of Excavation from Gautier to Olson, a monograph on poetry and archaeology, and Voicing the Mosaic, a large-scale student/community installation and performance project on language and identity in Surrey. Sasha’s current work, funded by a 5 year Insight Grant (2020-2025), uses biographical fiction and literary non-fiction to explore modern photography’s collision with Hitler’s forced labour campaign, particularly through the lives of French photographer, Henri Cartier-Bresson, Leica Camera heiress, Elsie Kühn-Leitz, and the forced labourers at the Leica factory in Wetzlar.


  • BA, University of Victoria
  • MA, University of Victoria
  • PhD, University of Sussex


Future courses may be subject to change.