Plays by Mediterranean Women
Edited by Marion Baraitser
Plays from countries geographically linked but politically divided.
“…a great opportunity for those who don’t see much live theatre by women to know what they’ve been missing.” Everywoman Magazine
“Twelve Women in a Cell” by Nawal el Saadawi, translated by Helen Kaye and Miriam Kainy
A penetrating autobiographical play about the imprisonment in the same cell of twelve Arab women from different backgrounds, who would not tow the line.
“The End Of The Dream Season” by Miriam Kainy
A woman doctor outwits her friends and relations to retain her inheritance.
“Libration” by Lluisa Cunillé
A mysterious, intense and comic two-hander about two women who meet in a city park at night.
“Mephisto” by Ariane Mnouchkine, adapted from the novel by Klaus Mann, translated by Timberlake Wertenbaker
The story of a German actor who sells his soul to Nazi ideology. Also a feature film.
“Harsh Angel” by Maria Avraamidou, translated by Rhea Frangofinou
A gentle Chekhovian tale of a family torn by the partition of their native land.
“Veronica Franco, Courtesan and Poet” by Dacia Maraini, translated by Sian Williams and Marion Baraitser
The life of a sixteenth century Venetian courtesan during a time of plague.
About the Editor
Marion Baraitser is a commissioned Arts Council and BBC playwright. She is an award winning published playwright, short story writer, translator and editor. She took an M.A. in English Literature at Witwatersrand University, then worked as a teacher and journalist before settling in London. She was tutor in English Literature for Birkbeck Extramural Department, London University for many years and taught Creative Writing for Morley College, City Lit Institute, Women’s Theatre Workshop. In 1996 with an Arts Council award, and with grants from UNESCO and the European Jewish Publications Society, she started her own press, Loki Books, specialising in new fiction in translation from minority languages by women. As editor of Plays by Mediterranean Women she attended the Women Writers Talk Peace conference in March 1997 in Israel on a British Council travel award
About the authors
Nawal El Saadawi was an Egyptian feminist writer, activist and physician. She wrote many books on the subject of women in Islam, paying particular attention to the practice of female genital mutilation in her society. She was described as “the Simone de Beauvoir of the Arab World”, and as “Egypt’s most radical woman”. She was founder and president of the Arab Women’s Solidarity Association and co-founder of the Arab Association for Human Rights. She was awarded honorary degrees on three continents. In 2004, she won the North-South Prize from the Council of Europe. In 2005, she won the Inana International Prize in Belgium, and in 2012, the International Peace Bureau awarded her the 2012 Sean MacBride Peace Prize.
Miriam Kainy was born in Vienna, Austria and immigrated to Israel with her parents in 1950 at the age of 8. She studied history and philosophy at Tel Aviv University and always combined her artistic activity with social and political engagement. Miriam Kainy writes for adults as well as for children and young people. One of her plays, The End of the Dream Season, has been translated and published internationally. She has also written manuscripts for radio and television and adapted and translated drama from English and Yiddish into Hebrew.
Lluisa Cunillé was born in Badalona (Barcelona) in 1961. She is a Spanish playwright, awarded in 2010 by the Ministry of Culture of Spain with the National Prize for Dramatic Literature. She studied in the drama seminars-workshops given by Sanchís Sinisterra in Barcelona. Her projects combine realism and absurd elements, with a certain poetic and humorous touch. Some of her important plays are Berna (1992), La festa(1993), Libración (1993), Accident (1994), and Privado (1996). She is also the author of some of the best works of cabaret in Catalan theatre.
Ariane Mnouchkine (born 3 March 1939) is a French stage director. She founded the Parisian avant-garde stage ensemble Théâtre du Soleil in 1964. She has written and directed 1789 (1974) and Molière (1978), and in 1989, she directed La Nuit Miraculeuse. She holds a Chair of Artistic Creation at the Collège de France an Honorary Degree in Performing Arts from the University of Rome III, awarded in 2005 and an Honorary Doctor of Letters from Oxford University, awarded 18 June 2008. Photograph by Michèle Laurent.
Maria Avraamidou is a very prolific and award-wining writer. She is mostly a theatrical writer and most of her works were awarded first prize by the Theatrical organization of Cyprus (ΘΟΚ). Her other works have been presented in other theatrical establishments in Cyprus as well as at the Cyprus television where she worked as director for many years. Greek channel (EΡΤ) also has shown some of her work (Harsh Angel). A collection of her short stories was awarded with a State Award for short stories in 2018 with title «Nearly» («Παρ’ ολίγον»).
Dacia Maraini is an Italian writer. Maraini’s work focuses on women’s issues, and she has written numerous plays and novels. She has won awards for her work, including the Formentor Prize for L’età del malessere ; the Premio Fregene for Isolina ; the Premio Campiello and Book of the Year Award for La lunga vita di Marianna Ucrìa ; and the Premio Strega for Buio.