Post-war British Drama: Looking Back in Gender
Routledge – 2001 – 288 pages
In this extensively revised and updated edition of her classic work, Look Back in Gender, Michelene Wandor confirms the symbiotic relationship between drama and gender in a provocative look at key, representative British plays from the last fifty years.
Repositioning the text at the heart of hteatre studies, Wandor surveys plays by Ayckbourn, Beckett, Churchill, Daniels, Friel, Hare, Kane, Osborne, Pinter, Ravenhill, Wertenbaker, Wesker and others. Her nuanced argument, central to any analysis of contemporary drama, discusses:
*the imperative of gender in the playwright's imagination
*the function of gender as a major determinant of the text's structural and narrative drives
*the impact of socialism and feminism on post-war British drama, and the relevance of feminist dynamics in drama
*differences in the representation of the fmaily, sexuality and the mother, before and after 1968
*the impact of the slogan that the 'personal is political' on contemporary form and content.
'Wandor strides out of the Spare Rib years to give us a salutary shake.' - Plays International
'There is something unabashedly radical about Wandor's writing which makes it a pleasure as well as a challenge to read. Her language is immediate, her motives and politics transparent, and her grasp of her subject matter is simply unparalleled. Looking Back in Gender remains a forcefully engaging, fascinating read. ' - Lucy PowellHam & High Books