As She Likes It
Shakespeare's Unruly Women
By Penny Gay
Routledge – 1994 – 224 pages
Series: Gender in Performance
As She Likes It is the first attempt to tackle head on the enduring question of how to perform those unruly women at the centre of Shakespeare's comedies.
Unique amongst both Shakespearian and feminist studies, As She Likes It asks how gender politics affects the production to the comedies, and how gender is represented, both in the text and on the stage. Penny Gay takes a fascinating look at the way Twelfth Night, The Taming of the Shrew, Much Ado About Nothing, As You Like It and Measure for Measure have been staged over the last half a century, when perceptions of gender roles have undergone massive changes. She also interrogates, rigorously but thoughtfully, the relationship between a male theatrical establishment and a burgeoning feminist approach to performance.
As illuminating for practitioners as it will be enjoyable and useful for students, As She Likes It will be critical reading for anyone interested in women's experience of theatre.