Saturday 31 May 2014 from 9.30-5pm at University of Hull, England

**£15/£10 concessions**

This is a conference about a 1914 women’s suffrage production of a play by the tenth-century nun said to be the first female dramatist.

In January 1914 in London, England, the Pioneer Players theatre society produced a remarkable and disturbing play about prostitution. This play was written by Hrotsvit, the tenth-century nun from Gandersheim. Known also as ‘strong voice’, Hrotsvit has been claimed as the first female dramatist. Edith Craig’s production of the play for the Pioneer Players theatre society and Christopher St John’s translation was part of a programme of encouraging women’s writing for the stage in the period of the campaign for women’s suffrage.

The play featured the punishment of the prostitute, Thais, by imprisonment, providing a topical allusion in 1914 to the brutal treatment of suffragettes in London. This interdisciplinary international conference will mark the centenary of this remarkable production and provide an opportunity for a reassessment of Hrotsvit’s drama, bringing together researchers interested in the modern production of the play, as well as the medieval text and context.  Dr Anna Birch will lead a workshop reading of Paphnutius and a discussion, which will be filmed as part of the ongoing project on Pageants and Pioneers begun in May 2011 with the Fragments & Monuments production and film of A Pageant of Great Women.

Confirmed Speakers: Anna Birch, Katharine Cockin, Phil Crispin, Ellen Ricketts, Helene Scheck, Jenna Soleo-Shanks Registration fee £15/£10 concessions includes buffet lunch and refreshments during the day. For more information and registration form, email:


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