Author Archives

I am a writer and educator in Drama and Theatre Studies. My specialist areas are Shakespeare, particularly with regard to the female characters, dramaturgy and theatre history. Raising a little boy also gives me plenty of cause to reflect on parenting and social justice issues. While my active site is you can find lots more of my writing archived at Hoyden About Town, under both Anna and my earlier handle, Orlando. Twitter: @orlandocreature

  • “Abigail’s age has been raised.”

    A young woman of mixed race, in Puritan costume, clasps her hands and looks up.

    Arthur Miller’s The Crucible has meant so much to so many people. As a parable about state control, or without its political dimension, as an examination of the power dynamics within a closed society, or of an individual working through guilt to find something valuable in themselves. In fictionalising the lives of the real people involved, however, Miller raised Abigail’s age from eleven to seventeen. It may be time to think about his motives and the implications of the changes he made.

  • Quick Hit: this is definitely the droid you are looking for

    For the sheer delight of it (and a bit especially for Chally) – Yarn R2-D2 | The Mary Sue.

  • Friday Hoyden: Grace O’Malley, the Pirate Queen

    Photo image of a redheaded woman in 16th century dress sitting against a granite wall.

    Grace (Grainne) O’Malley ruled the seas to the west of Ireland in the sixteenth century. It was unheard of for a woman to command ships and lead a clan, but Grace did it, holding the loyalty of her troops for decades.

  • Shakespeare and the Bechdel Test

    We all know which way the Avengers falls, but have you ever wondered whether Shakespeare passes the Bechdel test?

  • IWD Event: Dame Carol Kidu to give the 2012 Pamela Denoon lecture

    For Hoydens within travelling distance of Canberra, this year’s Pamela Denoon lecture will be given on International Women’s Day (Thursday 8 March), at the ANU, on on “Sex, Women and the 21st Century in Papua New Guinea”.

  • Friday Hoyden: Dora Chance

    BookCover showing two young women in matching brightly coloured dresses

    Dora and Nora Chance (the “Lucky Chances”, naturally) are twins born into post- war London, on the wrong side of the theatrical tracks. Bastard children of a grand Shakespearean actor, Dora and Nora learn to dance to work their passage through a world that makes a great fuss of legitimacy, but likes to have less licit elements on call as well. Dora narrates, and you accompany her giddy passions, frantic hopes and pragmatic compromises.

  • Blegging: Name Orlando’s Book

    My first book is to be published later this year, and I am still not happy with the title. It is an academic text, but one I hope will have a broader appeal for people interested in the theatre, and the way women are presented on stage.

  • Friday Hoyden: Camila Vallejo

    Camila Vallejo, despite being twenty-three, an age at which I thought being organised and active meant getting friends to come with me to a gig instead of going on my own, is the most prominent activist in the Chilean movement to force the government to enact free public education for all, right up to tertiary level.