This two-volume edited collection illuminates the valuable counter-canon of Irish women’s playwriting with forty-two essays written by leading and emerging Irish theatre scholars and practitioners. Covering three hundred years of Irish theatre history from 1716 to 2016, it is the most comprehensive study of plays written by Irish women to date. These short essays provide both a valuable introduction and innovative analysis of key playtexts, bringing renewed attention to scripts and writers that continue to be under-represented in theatre criticism and performance.
Volume One covers plays by Irish women playwrights written between 1716 to 1992, and seeks to address and redress the historic absence of Irish female playwrights in theatre histories. Highlighting the work of nine women playwrights from the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries, as well as thirteen of the twentieth century’s key writers, the chapters in this volume explore such varied themes as the impact of space and place on identity, women’s strategic use of genre, and theatrical responses to shifts in Irish politics and culture.
CONTRIBUTORS: Conrad Brunström, David Clare, Thomas Conway, Marguérite Corporaal, Mark Fitzgerald, Shirley-Anne Godfrey, Úna Kealy, Sonja Lawrenson, Cathy Leeney, Marc Mac Lochlainn, Kate McCarthy, Fiona McDonagh, Deirdre McFeely, Megan W. Minogue, Ciara Moloney, Justine Nakase, Patricia O'Beirne, Kevin O'Connor, Ciara O'Dowd, Clíona Ó Gallchoir, Anna Pilz, Emilie Pine, Ruud van den Beuken, Feargal Whelan
'Spanning from the eighteenth-century to the present day, The Golden Thread brings together the work of leading scholars in Irish theatre and women’s writing with that of theatre practitioners to recover the often-hidden contributions of women playwrights. The collection develops a counter-canon of Irish playwrights that examines issues of class, sexuality, and disability.'
Colleen English, The New Books Network
'This is one of those indispensable works that will influence the future of performance studies and feminist criticism. The number and variety of voices on display, the effort in the reconstruction of the canon by adding women playwrights who had been erased in the past, and the declared ambition to draw attention to and create the conditions for revivals and publications of plays created by contemporary women playwrights make this extensive compilation more than recommendable. [....] All in all, a very enjoyable edition, which makes for a rewarding read and provides essential information.'
María Gaviña-Costero, Estudios Irlandeses