Introduction: Attending to Early Modern Women as Theatre Makers


  • Elizabeth Schafer Royal Holloway University of London



women playwrights, early modern drama, Mary Sidney, Mary Wroth, Elizabeth Cary, gender


This essay introduces the playwrights under consideration and looks forward to the four essays in this section examining the work of early modern women theatre makers.The introduction ends with a census of early modern women's plays in modern performance.

Author Biography

Elizabeth Schafer, Royal Holloway University of London

Elizabeth Schafer ( is Professor of Drama and Theatre Studies at Royal Holloway, University of London. She has published performance histories of The Taming of the Shrew and Twelfth Night and is currently writing a performance history of The Merry Wives of Windsor.  She has published extensively on the work of women theatre directors; the early history of the Royal Ballet; Australian theatre; and the work of Lilian Baylis. She edited The City Wit for Richard Brome online. In 2013 she ran 'The Mariam Project' to mark the 400th anniversary of the publication of Elizabeth Cary's The Tragedy of Mariam






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