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

  • Charity Signal Boost: Special Effect

    9 year old boy and his dad with gaming controller.

    Special Effect is a UK-based charity full of very clever people who develop work-arounds that allow people with a wide range of disabilities to play computer games.

  • Signal Boost: Wonder Women!

    Woman in Wonder Woman costume laughs with child in WW shirt.

    This coming Saturday at the Mitchell Library, in Sydney, there will be a screening of a new American-made documentary about the history and influence of Wonder Woman. Afterwards there will be a panel discussion with some amazing local wonder women: Nicola Scott, Feisty Cuffs, Queenie Chan and Mystic Medusa will be chatting with filmmaker and journalist Daz Chandler.

  • Signal Boost: Pamela Denoon Lecture

    Head-and-shoulders of Wendy McCarthy, suit jacket.

    People who can get to Canberra: this year’s Pamela Denoon lecture is the 25th Anniversary of the event. The speech will be given by Wendy McCarthy AO, and many previous speakers and committee members will be attending for this special occasion.

  • Friday Hoyden: Beatrice

    B&W of Kate Hepburn in very silly costume, with a goat mask on a stick.

    The way women are treated by men in Shakespeare’s Much Ado About Nothing is awful, but don’t let that fool you into thinking this is an anti-women play. This is a play that exposes everything that is foolish and harmful about fearing female sexuality, or about doubting female capacity for steadfastness.

  • A Guard’s Story

    Via the Global Mail, this is a cartoon-illustrated account by an ex-guard of working in one of Australia’s migration detention centres. This is very tough to read, but worse not to know.

  • More of this, please

    Cartoon of all kinds of people having paired conversations. Text: Alison Bechdel, passing the Bechdel test.

    How great is it to see a cover like this on a street rag?

  • Friday Hoyden: Héloïse d’Argenteuil

    Medieval painting of monk and nun conversing.

    The second in my set of Three Wise H’s. Poor, tragic Heloise was one of the great minds of the twelfth century. Eventually Abbess of the Oratory of the Paraclete, she was not a nun by vocation, but through the medieval systems of sexual repression and ultra-strict gender role enforcement, along with a good sized dollop of bad luck.

  • The Totally Esoteric Cocktail Party

    Martini with olive.

    It looks like we need a spillover thread from the Totally Esoteric Thread, since Hildy and tigtog have lots to talk about regarding biomechanics, and I really want to ask kittehserf why that particular Louis. Feel free to chat, mingle,… Read More ›

  • The Totally Esoteric Thread (and follow-up on ARC funding cuts)

    While we sit around waiting for someone with some political muscle to actually weigh in on the issue of ARC funding cuts and the disrespect being shown to expertise, let us occupy ourselves in a positive way by opening up eilish’s suggested Totally Esoteric Thread. Please take this opportunity to share with the rest of us which esoteric pocket you can be popped into, especially if you are generally a lurker, and let’s find out what we, collectively, know.

  • Quick, Late Friday-Now-Saturday Hoyden courtesy of my crashing internet connection: Saint Lucy

    Group of girls holding candles, one at the front wearing a candle crown.

    Saint Lucy’s Day is celebrated throughout Scandinavia, particularly in Sweden, and is a very special marker in the lead-up to Christmas. It is traditionally celebrated by the young girls of the town walking in procession wearing white dresses with red sashes and carrying lighted candles. The eldest wears a crown of candles to represent the saint herself.