Elizabeth Robins: Staging a Life
Routledge – 1995 – 312 pages
A woman of extraordinary energy, talent and versatility. Elizabeth Robins was an actress who popularised Ibsen on the British stage, a prolific and popular writer of novels and non-fiction, and an Edwardian suffragette. Her extensive circle of friends included Florence Bell, Henry James, John Masefield and William Archer. She worked with the Pankhursts and knew the Woolfs. Through examining the life and work of this vivid and transatlantic figure born during the American Civil War yet surviving into the England of the 1950s, Angela John raises questions about the shaping of historical identities.
Situating Elizabeth Robins's achievement in the context of the British and American cultural history of the period, this is a book which will attract historians, teachers and students of theatre studies and all those fascinated by biography.
This meticulously researche book places Robins firmly within her social and cultural context. By skilfully weaving the social history of time into the circumstances that Robins may have faced at any particular historical moment, John breaks away from the traditional literary account of a life and presents historical biography at its best.' - THES
`Nonetheless, John's meticulous scholarship and her perspicacious reading of the evidence goes some way towards revealing what Elizabeth Robins tantalizingly called `the real me.' I Theatre Resh Intl