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UBC Theses and Dissertations

A stage of their own : feminist playwrights of the suffrage era Stowell, Sheila 1989

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A STAGE OF THEIR OWN: FEMINIST PLAYWRIGHTS OF THE SUFFRAGE ERA by SHEILA STOWELL The U n i v e r s i t y o f T o r o n t o (Drama C e n t r e ) , 1977 B., The U n i v e r s i t y o f B r i t i s h C o l u m b i a , 1981 THESIS SUBMITTED IN PARTIAL FULFILLMENT OF THE REQUIREMENTS FOR THE DEGREE OF DOCTOR OF PHILOSOPHY i n THE FACULTY OF GRADUATE STUDIES ( D e p a r t m e n t o f E n g l i s h ) We a c c e p t t h i s t h e s i s as c o n f o r m i n g t o t h e r e q u i r e d s t a n d a r d THE UNIVERSITY OF B R I T I S H COLUMBIA O c t o b e r 1989 © S h e i l a S t o w e l l , 1989 In presenting this thesis in partial fulfilment of the requirements for an advanced degree at the University of British Columbia, I agree that the Library shall make it freely available for reference and study. I further agree that permission for extensive copying of this thesis for scholarly purposes may be granted by the head of my department or by his or her representatives. It is understood that copying or publication of this thesis for financial gain shall not be allowed without my written permission. Department of English The University of British Columbia Vancouver, Canada Date 10 October 1989 DE-6 (2/88) i i ABSTRACT D u r i n g t h e y e a r s 1906 t o 1914, as a f l a g g i n g woman's movement was r e v i t a l i z e d by t h e c o n t r o v e r s i a l Women's S o c i a l and P o l i t i c a l U n i o n , women o f a l l c l a s s e s , t a l e n t s and o c c u p a t i o n s were g a l v a n i z e d i n t o a c t i o n . Among them were a number o f p l a y w r i g h t s who used t h e o v e r t l y ' p u b l i c ' forum o f drama t o a r g u e f e m i n i s t v i e w s . I t i s t h e i r work, i n i t s s o c i a l , p o l i t i c a l and a e s t h e t i c c o n t e x t t h a t f o r m s t h e s u b j e c t o f my s t u d y . I t a k e as my s t a r t i n g p o i n t E l i z a b e t h R o b i n s ' d r a m a t i c ' t r a c t ' V o t e s f o r Women, p r o d u c e d as p a r t o f t h e B a r k e r - V e d r e n n e C o u r t s e a s o n o f 1907. I n t r o d u c i n g b o t h f e m i n i s t and s p e c i f i c a l l y s u f f r a g e t o p i c s t o t h e w o r l d of E d w a r d i a n s o c i e t y drama, R o b i n s showed her s i s t e r p l a y w r i g h t s how e x i s t i n g t h e a t r i c a l models might be m a n i p u l a t e d t o t h e i r a d v a n t a g e . Her s u c c e s s h e l p e d spawn a s e r i e s o f s o - c a l l e d " s u f f r a g e " p l a y s p r o d u c e d under t h e d i r e c t a u s p i c e s o f t h e A c t r e s s e s ' F r a n c h i s e League and t h e Women W r i t e r s ' S u f f r a g e L e a g u e . I n t e n d e d as a g i t p r o p drama f o r t h e c o n v e r t e d , t h i s s u b - g e n r e , which i s l o o k e d a t i n my s e c o n d c h a p t e r , t o o k a d v a n t a g e o f t h e t e c h n i q u e s o f c o n t e m p o r a r y r e a l i s m , f a r c e , and c i v i c p a g e a n t r y f o r immediate and n a r r o w l y p o l i t i c a l g o a l s . In so d o i n g , however, i t p r o v i d e d v a l u a b l e e x p e r i e n c e f o r a number o f women d r a m a t i s t s who c h o s e as w e l l t o w r i t e f o r t h e l a r g e r i i i and more b r o a d l y based a u d i e n c e s of London's West End. My f i n a l c h a p t e r s f o c u s upon s e l e c t e d works by p r o f e s s i o n a l p l a y w r i g h t s C i c e l y H a m i l t o n ( D i a n a o f Dobson's 1908), E l i z a b e t h B a k e r ( C h a i n s 1909) and G i t h a Sowerby ( R u t h e r f o r d  and Son 1912). I am p a r t i c u l a r l y c o n c e r n e d w i t h t h e manner i n w h i c h each r e w o r k e d t h e t h e a t r i c a l c o n v e n t i o n s o f t h e l a t e V i c t o r i a n s a c c o r d i n g t o avowedly f e m i n i s t l i g h t s . The s u c c e s s o f t h e i r work as w e l l as t h e ways i n wh i c h i t may be shown t o d i f f e r from b o t h t h e m a i n s t r e a m drama o f P i n e r o and J o n e s and t h e p r o g r e s s i v e "new" t h e a t r e o f Shaw, G a l s w o r t h y and G r a n v i l l e B a r k e r , s u g g e s t s t h a t i n t h i s group o f w r i t e r s the E n g l i s h s p e a k i n g w o r l d e n j o y e d i t s f i r s t c o h e s i v e and s u b s t a n t i a l women's t h e a t r e . iv TABLE OF CONTENTS Preface 1 Chapter I: E l i z a b e t h Robins' Votes f o r Women 9 Chapter I I : Suff r a g e Drama 60 Chapter I I I : C i c e l y Hamilton's Diana of Dobson's ... 114 Chapter IV: E l i z a b e t h Baker's Chains 164 Chapter V: Githa Sowerby's Rutherford and Son 206 Works C i t e d 248 Appendix 258 V ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS I would l i k e t o thank t h e f o l l o w i n g i n s t i t u t i o n s f o r t h e i r a s s i s t a n c e i n t h e c o m p l e t i o n o f t h i s s t u d y . F o r s i g n i f i c a n t f i n a n c i a l s u p p o r t , The S o c i e t y f o r T h e a t r e R e s e a r c h ( U . K . ) , The S o c i a l S c i e n c e s and H u m a n i t i e s R e s e a r c h C o u n c i l and t h e H.R. M a c m i l l a n F o u n d a t i o n ( C a n a d a ) . F o r e x t e n d i n g t o me t h e c o u r t e s y o f t h e i r r e s e a r c h f a c i l i t i e s , The B r i t i s h L i b r a r y , The B r i t i s h Newspaper L i b r a r y ( C o l i n d a l e ) , The Mander and M i t c h e n s o n T h e a t r e C o l l e c t i o n , The F a w c e t t L i b r a r y , The G a r r i c k C l u b and The T h e a t r e Museum ( U . K . ) ; The B i l l y Rose T h e a t r e C o l l e c t i o n (New York P u b l i c L i b r a r y a t L i n c o l n C e n t r e ) and t h e H a r r y Ransom H u m a n i t i e s R e s e a r c h C e n t r e ( U n i v e r s i t y o f Texas a t A u s t i n ) ( U . S . A . ) . F o r a l l o w i n g me t o r e p r o d u c e u n p u b l i s h e d l e t t e r s o f B e r n a r d Shaw and H a r l e y G r a n v i l l e B a r k e r , The S o c i e t y o f A u t h o r s , on b e h a l f o f t h e e s t a t e s o f B e r n a r d Shaw and H a r l e y G r a n v i l l e B a r k e r . I would a l s o l i k e t o e x t e n d t h a n k s t o t h e f o l l o w i n g i n d i v i d u a l s , A i r M a r s h a l S i r L e s l i e Bower R.A.F. ( R e t d . ) , e x e c u t o r o f t h e e s t a t e o f C i c e l y H a m i l t o n , Mabel S m i t h , e x e c u t o r o f t h e e s t a t e o f E l i z a b e t h R o b i n s , D a v i d Mayer and V i v G a r d n e r o f t h e U n i v e r s i t y o f M a n c h e s t e r , C h r i s Dymkowski of R o y a l H o l l o w a y and B e d f o r d New C o l l e g e , U n i v e r s i t y of London, E r r o l D u rbach and Andrew P a r k i n o f t h e U n i v e r s i t y o f B r i t i s h C o l u m b i a , D a v i d Lemon and S t e p h e n M a t s u b a . P a r t i c u l a r d e b t s o f g r a t i t u d e a r e owed t o Jon W i s e n t h a l and J o e l K a p l a n . 1 PREFACE "How do the y know what i s womanly? I t ' s f o r women t o d e c i d e t h a t . " So s p e a k s E r n e s t i n e B l u n t i n E l i z a b e t h R o b i n s ' V o t e s f o r Women, h e r c h a l l e n g e t o men and women h e r a l d i n g a b a t t l e t h a t was t o be waged o v e r many f r o n t s i n t h e e a r l y y e a r s o f t h e t w e n t i e t h c e n t u r y , as f e m i n i s t s o f t h a t p e r i o d s t r u g g l e d f o r t h e r i g h t t o d e f i n e t h e m s e l v e s . D u r i n g t h e y e a r s 1906 t o 1914, as a f l a g g i n g woman's movement was r e v i t a l i z e d by t h e c o n t r o v e r s i a l Women's S o c i a l and P o l i t i c a l U n i o n , women o f a l l c l a s s e s , t a l e n t s and o c c u p a t i o n s were g a l v a n i z e d i n t o a c t i o n . Among them were a c e r t a i n number o f p l a y w r i g h t s who t u r n e d t o t h e o v e r t l y ' p u b l i c ' forum o f drama ( a t a t i m e when women were c o n v e n t i o n a l l y r e l e g a t e d t o what was l a b e l l e d t h e ' p r i v a t e ' s p h e r e ) t o a r g u e t h e i r f e m i n i s t v i e w s . I t i s t h e i r work t h a t f o rms t h e s u b j e c t o f t h i s s t u d y . R e c o g n i z i n g t h a t i t was a p e r i o d t h a t w i t n e s s e d a v e r i t a b l e e x p l o s i o n i n t h e number of women d r a m a t i s t s - J u l i e H o l l e d g e e s t i m a t e s t h a t t h e r e were o v e r f o u r h u n d r e d w r i t i n g a t t h e time (3) - my s t u d y i s s e l e c t i v e r a t h e r t h a n e x h a u s t i v e , f o c u s s i n g upon a group o f 2 p l a y s t h a t a t t e m p t e d t o b r i n g f e m i n i s t v i e w s of women and a f e m i n i s t v i s i o n o f drama t o t h e s t a g e s of London's more i n n o v a t i v e and e x p e r i m e n t a l r e p e r t o r y t h e a t r e s . W i t h t h e e x c e p t i o n o f G i t h a Sowerby, about whom v i r t u a l l y no documentary e v i d e n c e e x i s t s , t h e d r a m a t i s t s l o o k e d a t were a l l a c t i v e l y i n v o l v e d i n t h e s u f f r a g e movement and i n a d d i t i o n t o t h e i r f u l l - l e n g t h work f o r t h e a v a n t - g a r d e c o m m e r c i a l t h e a t r e , c o n t r i b u t e d t o t h e o v e r t l y p r o p a g a n d i s t drama o f t h e c a u s e i t s e l f . E l i z a b e t h R o b i n s was t h e f i r s t o f t h i s group t o t a k e h e r c h a n c e s as a p r o f e s s i o n a l p l a y w r i g h t . Her V o t e s f o r Women (1907) i s a s e l f - c o n s c i o u s l y p o l i t i c i z e d " t r a c t " w h i c h i n t r o d u c e s s p e c i f i c a l l y s u f f r a g e as w e l l as more f a r - r a n g i n g f e m i n i s t i s s u e s t o t h e w o r l d o f s o c i e t y drama p o p u l a r i z e d i n t h e 1890s by s u c h p l a y w r i g h t s as A r t h u r Wing P i n e r o and O s c a r W i l d e . Her f u l l - l e n g t h e x p e r i m e n t i n f o r m and c o n t e n t spawned a s e r i e s o f s o - c a l l e d " s u f f r a g e p l a y s , " a s p e c i e s o f a g i t p r o p drama composed t h r o u g h t h e y e a r s 1908 t o 1914. R e c o g n i z i n g t h e propaganda p o s s i b i l i t i e s o f t h e t h e a t r e , s u f f r a g e s u p p o r t e r s o f t h e t h e a t r i c a l p r o f e s s i o n formed i n 1908 t h e Women W r i t e r s ' S u f f r a g e League (WWSL) and t h e A c t r e s s e s ' F r a n c h i s e League ( A F L ) , o r g a n i z a t i o n s w h i c h s u c c e s s f u l l y e n l i s t e d d r a m a t i c a r t i n t h e f i g h t f o r women's r i g h t s . The drama composed and p e r f o r m e d by t h e WWSL and t h e AFL m a n i p u l a t e s e x i s t i n g g e n r e s and s t y l e s , sometimes i n t o o b v i o u s a rguments f o r f e m a l e e n f r a n c h i s e m e n t but a l s o i n t o 3 more g e n e r a l i z e d p o r t r a y a l s o f women's e x p e r i e n c e . These i n c l u d e b o t h r e p r e s e n t a t i o n s o f woman's c o n t i n u i n g v i c t i m i z a t i o n w i t h i n t h e e x i s t i n g s o c i a l and p o l i t i c a l s y s t e m and c e l e b r a t o r y r e n d e r i n g s o f c u r r e n t and p o t e n t i a l a c c o m p l i s h m e n t s . Among the f o r m e r a r e t h e g r i m l y r e a l i s t i c dramas o f I n e z B e n s u s a n (The A p p l e ) and G e r t r u d e Vaughan (Woman w i t h a Pa c k) i n which h a r d s h i p , h a r a s s m e n t , and economic b e t r a y a l a r e shown t o be woman's common l o t , and s u f f r a g e c o m e d i e s s u c h as C i c e l y H a m i l t o n ' s How t h e Vot e Was  Won wh i c h o p e n l y r i d i c u l e t h e p o s i t i o n o f a n t i - s u f f r a g i s t s . H a m i l t o n ' s P a g e a n t o f G r e a t Women i s t h e b e s t known o f t h e c e l e b r a t o r y p i e c e s , d r a w i n g upon E n g l a n d ' s r i c h t r a d i t i o n of s t r e e t t h e a t r e and c i v i c p a g e a n t r y t o a r g u e t h e a b i l i t y of women i n t i m e s p a s t and p r e s e n t . A l l formed p a r t o f t h e pro p a g a n d a machine o f t h e c a u s e , b e i n g c o n c e i v e d , w r i t t e n , and p e r f o r m e d f o r immediate and s p e c i f i c p o l i t i c a l e nds. At t h e same t i m e t h a t t h e y were w r i t i n g p r o p a g a n d i s t drama i n t e n d e d f o r p e r f o r m a n c e b e f o r e s u f f r a g e s y m p a t h i z e r s and w o r k e r s , C i c e l y H a m i l t o n and E l i z a b e t h B aker were a l s o engaged i n t h e c o m p o s i t i o n o f c o m m e r c i a l drama d e s t i n e d f o r the r e p e r t o r y s e a s o n s t h a t i n t r o d u c e d Shaw, G r a n v i l l e B a r k e r , G a l s w o r t h y and company t o London p l a y g o e r s . A l o n g w i t h G i t h a Sowerby t h e y r e w o r k e d d r a m a t i c c o n v e n t i o n s ( t h o s e o f r o m a n t i c comedy i n H a m i l t o n ' s c a s e , and o f n a t u r a l i s m i n t h a t o f Baker and Sowerby) from a d i s t i n c t l y f e m a l e p e r s p e c t i v e t h a t can be d i s t i n g u i s h e d from s u c h m a i n s t r e a m w r i t e r s o f t h e l a t e V i c t o r i a n and E d w a r d i a n s t a g e as P i n e r o . and Henry A r t h u r J o n e s as w e l l as f rom s u c h p r o g r e s s i v e , ' f e m i n i s t ' d r a m a t i s t s as Shaw, G r a n v i l l e B a r k e r , G a l s w o r t h y and Houghton. And a l t h o u g h s u c h p l a y s as D i a n a o f Dobson's ( 1 9 0 8 ) , C h a i n s (1909) and R u t h e r f o r d and Son ( 1 9 1 2 ) , a r e q u i t e o b v i o u s l y r o o t e d i n t h e s o c i a l c o n d i t i o n s o f t h e i r t i m e , t h e y can a l s o be d i s t i n g u i s h e d f r o m R o b i n s ' V o t e s f o r  Women i n t h e i r movement away from t h a t p l a y ' s o v e r t p o l i t i c i z i n g . In f a c t , H a m i l t o n and B a k e r ' s work seems t o d i v i d e i n t o s p e c i f i c a l l y p r o p a g a n d i s t p l a y s f o r t h e s u f f r a g e c a u s e and more complex, f a r - r a n g i n g f e m i n i s t drama f o r t h e p r o f e s s i o n a l s t a g e . Which i s not o f c o u r s e t o deny t h e p o l i t i c a l power o f c o m m e r c i a l t h e a t r e - as t h e c r i t i c a l r e a c t i o n t o R u t h e r f o r d and Son d e m o n s t r a t e s , a p l a y can become most p o l i t i c a l when l e a s t o v e r t l y s o . F o r d e s p i t e the g r e a t e r or l e s s e r w e i g h t p l a c e d upon f e m a l e e n f r a n c h i s e m e n t i n t h e s e p l a y s (and i t i s w o r t h r e i t e r a t i n g h e r e t h a t a number o f t h e p r o p a g a n d i s t p l a y s d i d not c o n f i n e t h e m s e l v e s m e r e l y t o l o b b y i n g f o r v o t e s f o r women) t h e y must a l l be r e a d as women's c h a l l e n g e s t o dominant d r a m a t i c and s o c i a l c o n v e n t i o n s , w h i c h a r e t h e m s e l v e s so i n t e r t w i n e d as t o make i t d i f f i c u l t t o d i s t i n g u i s h t h e two. S o c i e t y ' s i n s i s t e n c e upon m a r r i a g e f o r women, f o r i n s t a n c e , merges i n t o t h e t r a d i t i o n a l r e s o l u t i o n of comedy. T h i s i s an i s s u e H a m i l t o n g r a p p l e s w i t h i n D i a n a o f Dobson's as she r e w o r k s t h e c o n v e n t i o n s of r o m a n t i c comedy, w i t h i t s p r e s c r i b e d m a r i t a l 5 denouement, t o r e n d e r a f e m i n i s t c r i t i q u e upon what she l a b e l s " m a r r i a g e as a t r a d e . " M a r r i a g e f a r e s worse i n the o t h e r f u l l - l e n g t h p l a y s t h a t c o m p r i s e t h i s s t u d y as t h e t r a d i t i o n a l l o v e and m a r r i a g e p l o t f a l l s by t h e w a y s i d e ; i n V o t e s f o r Women, C h a i n s and R u t h e r f o r d and Son, t h e p l a y s ' f e m a l e p r o t a g o n i s t s come t o r e j e c t m a r r i a g e as i t i s o f f e r e d t o them, o p t i n g i n s t e a d f o r a l i f e o f h e r o i c c e l i b a c y . I t i s o n l y i n G e r t r u d e J e n n i n g s ' s u f f r a g e p l a y , A Woman's  I n f l u e n c e , t h a t a p p a r e n t m a r i t a l harmony i s a c h i e v e d ; t h e o b v i o u s s u p e r i o r i t y o f the w i f e , however, c o u p l e d w i t h h er s o c i a l and p o l i t i c a l i n f e r i o r i t y t o her husband u n d e r c u t any easy endorsement o f t h e c h a r a c t e r s ' a l l i a n c e . Nor s h o u l d i t be t h o u g h t t h a t i t i s m e r e l y t h e i r a l l i a n c e s w i t h f e m a l e c h a r a c t e r s t h a t a r e r e n d e r e d s u s p e c t or r e j e c t e d i n t h e s e p l a y s . Male c h a r a c t e r s as a whole a r e p o r t r a y e d i n a l e s s t h a n p o s i t i v e l i g h t , t h e i r c h a r a c t e r i z a t i o n r u n n i n g t h e gamut from t h e c o n g e n i a l but f e c k l e s s , i l l - u s e d but weak, t h r o u g h t h e pompous and o v e r b e a r i n g , a r r o g a n t and s e l f -c e n t r e d , t o t h e d e s t r u c t i v e o g r e w i t h g o d - l i k e p r e t e n s i o n s t o power. B r o t h e r s , l o v e r s , f a t h e r s , husbands - a l l a r e measured and i n some manner f o u n d w a n t i n g . So t o o a r e male e m p l o y e r s , as women a t work becomes a t o p i c o f c o n c e r n i n many o f t h e s e p l a y s and the f e m a l e worker moves t o c e n t r e s t a g e . U s u a l l y p o r t r a y e d as o p p r e s s e d and e x p l o i t e d by t h e combined f o r c e s of p a t r i a r c h y and c a p i t a l i s m , s u c h w o r k i n g women r e m a i n f i g u r e s o f r e s p e c t and 6 sympathy. O c c a s i o n a l l y , however, t h e y become s o c i a l r o l e models a t t h e same time t h a t t h e y p r o v i d e i n n o v a t i v e d r a m a t i c r o l e s f o r women a c t o r s f r u s t r a t e d w i t h t h e s t a g e ' s p r e d o m i n a n t l y c o n s e r v a t i v e t r e a t m e n t o f women. The f e m a l e i n d e p e n d e n t e n t r e p r e n e u r i n B a k e r ' s E d i t h i s an o b v i o u s example. In her c a s e , s e l f - e m p l o y m e n t p r o v e s l i b e r a t i n g and she e n j o y s a f r e e d o m from male c o n t r o l enhanced by t h e f a c t o f a s p e c i f i c a l l y f e m a l e c l i e n t e l e , one i n s t a n c e of the s p i r i t of f e m a l e s o l i d a r i t y t h a t p e r m e a t e s t h e w r i t i n g c o n s i d e r e d h e r e . A d i f f e r e n t a s p e c t of su c h f i d e l i t y i s e v i d e n t i n t h e s e p l a y w r i g h t s ' h a n d l i n g o f 'motherhood', a vexed t o p i c f o r women i n t h e p e r i o d , r e p r e s e n t i n g as i t d i d " t h e p r i n c i p a l e l e m e n t i n t h e d e f i n i t i o n and r e g u l a t i o n of f e m a l e s e x u a l i t y and a t t h e same time a s o u r c e of f e m i n i n e power" ( T i c k n e r 2 1 7 ) . In t h e hands o f R o b i n s , Baker and Sowerby motherhood p r o v e s t h e i m p e t u s f o r a f e m i n i s t r e c o n s i d e r a t i o n of A D o l l ' s House. R e j e c t i n g N ora's i n s i s t e n c e upon h e r p r e - e m i n e n t d u t y to h e r s e l f , t h e y i n s i s t upon t h e a b s o l u t e p r e c e d e n c e of t h e bond between p a r e n t and c h i l d , an o b l i g a t i o n r e c k o n e d a t t h e c o s t of p e r s o n a l i n d e p e n d e n c e . I t i s not i n t h e p l a y s a l o n e t h a t i n s t a n c e s o f f e m a l e l o y a l t y e x i s t . The p l a y w r i g h t s t h e m s e l v e s e n j o y e d a form o f f e m i n i s t c a m a r a d e r i e . R o b i n s f o r i n s t a n c e was t h e f i r s t p r e s i d e n t o f t h e WWSL ( H a m i l t o n and Baker were a l s o members), an o r g a n i z a t i o n d e d i c a t e d t o t h e c o m p o s i t i o n and 7 d i s s e m i n a t i o n o f f e m i n i s t w r i t i n g . D i a n a o f Dobson's was p r o d u c e d by a c t o r - m a n a g e r and AFL member Lena A s h w e l l w h i l e t h e P l a y A c t o r s , the s o c i e t y t h a t s t a g e d B a k e r ' s C h a i n s , had b o t h H a m i l t o n and I n e z Bensusan (head o f t h e AFL p l a y w r i g h t i n g d e p a r t m e n t ) on i t s a d v i s o r y c o u n c i l . In t h e c a s e o f R u t h e r f o r d and Son, i t was a c t o r and s u f f r a g e s u p p o r t e r T h y r z a Norman who e n c o u r a g e d a f r u s t r a t e d Sowerby t o c o m p l e t e t h e p l a y . When f i r s t p r o d u c e d each o f t h e works d i s c u s s e d below r e c e i v e d s e r i o u s and s u s t a i n e d c r i t i c a l a t t e n t i o n - a l t h o u g h what r e v i e w e r s seemed t o see o f t e n depended upon t h e i r sex and p o l i t i c a l p e r s u a s i o n . Some p i e c e s were e x t r a v a g a n t l y p r a i s e d and have been r e v i v e d i n r e c e n t y e a r s . V o t e s f o r  Women was s t a g e d a t RADA i n 1987; R u t h e r f o r d and Son a t t h e C o u r t T h e a t r e ( U p s t a i r s ) i n 1980 and a t RADA i n 1988; and D i a n a o f Dobson's a t t h e U n i v e r s i t y o f London (RHBNC), a l s o i n 1988. I t i s , however, not my i n t e n t i o n t o a r g u e t h e q u a l i t y o f e a c h work, but t o s u g g e s t t h a t t h e i r r e t r i e v a l as p a r t o f our s o c i a l , t h e a t r i c a l and l i t e r a r y h e r i t a g e w i l l p r o v i d e new c o n t e x t s i n which t o examine t h e drama o f e a r l y modern E n g l a n d . Not o n l y w i l l t h e s e p l a y s g a i n by b e i n g i n t r o d u c e d i n t o more m a i n s t r e a m s t u d i e s of E d w a r d i a n t h e a t r e , t h e y w i l l p r o v i d e i n t u r n new p e r s p e c t i v e s upon t h e work o f more f a m i l i a r w r i t e r s s u c h as Shaw, G r a n v i l l e B a r k e r and G a l s w o r t h y . 8 B r o u g h t t o g e t h e r by t h e h i g h l y o r g a n i z e d s t r u g g l e f o r the v o t e , t h e women p l a y w r i g h t s c o n s i d e r e d h e r e t u r n e d t o drama t o a d v o c a t e change a c c o r d i n g t o t h e i r f e m i n i s t i d e o l o g y ; a c c o r d i n g t o E.F. Spence, i t was i n g e n e r a l " t h e woman r a t h e r t h a n t h e man d r a m a t i s t who a p p r e c i a t e [ d ] t h e u t i l i t y o f t h e s t a g e as a means f o r s e e k i n g r e f o r m " ( 1 1 5 ) . T h e i r p l a y s s h o u l d n ot be r e a d as ' c o n s e r v a t i v e ' i n i n t e n t i o n , i f by c o n s e r v a t i v e we mean a s i m p l e i n t e g r a t i o n i n t o t h e e x i s t i n g p a t r i a r c h a l s o c i a l and p o l i t i c a l s t r u c t u r e . Some a r e g r i m p o r t r a y a l s o f t h e c o n s e q u e n c e s f o r women of l i f e i n su c h a s y s t e m , o t h e r s i d e a l i z e d r e p r e s e n t a t i o n s o f women's p o t e n t i a l . As a body, t h e y s t a n d b o t h as a c o n d e m n a t i o n and a c h a l l e n g e : a c o n d e m n a t i o n o f e x i s t i n g p a t r i a r c h a l v a l u e s and a c h a l l e n g e t o c o n s t r u c t f e m i n i s t a l t e r n a t i v e s , t h e a t r i c a l as w e l l as s o c i a l . C h a p t e r 1 E l i z a b e t h R o b i n s ' V o t e s f o r Women: "What we need i s a B a t t l e C r y " To women f a r and wide t h e trumpet c a l l goes f o r t h , Come f i g h t w i t h us i n our b a t t l e f o r f r e e d o m . T h i s i s no o r d i n a r y p e t t y c o n f l i c t , t h e i s s u e of wh i c h can be d e c i d e d by a few s t r e n u o u s w o r k e r s i n d i f f e r e n t l y and l a n g u i d l y s u p p o r t e d . T h i s i s a b a t t l e i n which a l l must t a k e p a r t ; t h e y must come re a d y f o r a c t i v e e n d e a v o u r and f o r s t r e n u o u s s e r v i c e ; t h e y must be p r e p a r e d not t o f l i n c h i n t h e hour o f d i f f i c u l t y or under t e m p o r a r y r e v e r s e , f o r t h e b a t t l e i s not t o the weak or to t h e dow n h e a r t e d , or t o the i n d i f f e r e n t , but t o t h o s e who r e s o l u t e l y s e t b e f o r e t h e m s e l v e s t h e d e t e r m i n a t i o n o f v i c t o r y . Thus "The B a t t l e C r y " went f o r t h i n O c t o b e r 1907 i n t h e f i r s t i s s u e o f V o t e s f o r Women, t h e o f f i c i a l o r g a n o f t h e Women's S o c i a l and P o l i t i c a l U n i o n , or WSPU as i t was commonly known. Founded by Mrs. Emmeline P a n k h u r s t and her d a u g h t e r C h r i s t a b e l i n M a n c h e s t e r i n 1903 as an o r g a n i z a t i o n d e d i c a t e d t o t h e e n f r a n c h i s e m e n t o f women, t h e WSPU soon came t o t h e c o n c l u s i o n t h a t t h e v o t e c o u l d o n l y be won by a s h i f t i n t a c t i c s away from t h e c o n s t i t u t i o n a l and l e g a l l o b b y i n g t h a t had been p r a c t i s e d by a v a r i e t y of o r g a n i z a t i o n s o v e r t h e p r e v i o u s h a l f - c e n t u r y . ' ' ' To t h a t end on 13 O c t o b e r 1905 C h r i s t a b e l P a n k h u r s t and A n n i e Kenney, a L a n c a s h i r e c o t t o n m i l l worker and WSPU r e c r u i t , i n t e r r u p t e d a m e e t i n g a t t h e M a n c h e s t e r F r e e T r a d e H a l l , demanding o f the L i b e r a l s p e a k e r , S i r Edward Grey, " W i l l t h e L i b e r a l Government g i v e women the v o t e ? " They put t h e i r q u e s t i o n more t h a n once but i t went unanswered. I n s t e a d , i n Kenney's own words, t h e " s t r o n g arms of L i b e r a l s t e w a r d s d r a g g e d us from t h e m e e t i n g and l i t e r a l l y f l u n g us out o f d o o r s " (Kenney 3 5 ) . A t t e m p t i n g t o a d d r e s s t h e crowd o u t s i d e , b o t h women were c h a r g e d w i t h o b s t r u c t i o n and marched o f f t o j a i l by t h e p o l i c e . The e p i s o d e i n i t i a t e d a p o l i c y o f r a d i c a l m i l i t a n c y t h e WSPU would p u r s u e f o r t h e n e x t d e c a d e , a p e r i o d which would w i t n e s s an e v e r - i n c r e a s i n g s p i r a l of v i o l e n c e . D e s p i t e the p o t e n t i a l d a n g e r s , many women answered t h e " B a t t l e C r y . " Among them was A m e r i c a n w r i t e r and a c t o r , 1 The b e s t known and l a r g e s t was t h e N a t i o n a l U n i o n o f Women's S u f f r a g e S o c i e t i e s (NUWSS) f o u n d e d i n 1897 as an amalgam o f s i x t e e n p r e - e x i s t i n g s o c i e t i e s , and headed by M i l l i c e n t G a r r e t t F a w c e t t . E l i z a b e t h R o b i n s , who l a t e r was t o admit t h a t she "had l i t t l e u n d e r s t a n d i n g o f and no p a r t i c l e of sympathy w i t h t h e f i r s t m i l i t a n t a c t " (Way S t a t i o n s 2 1 ) . R o b i n s might have seemed an o b v i o u s r e c r u i t f o r t h e c a u s e . E n c o u r a g e d by her f a t h e r t o a t t e n d m e d i c a l s c h o o l (an u n c o n v e n t i o n a l p r o f e s s i o n f o r women a t t h e t i m e ) she c h o s e i n s t e a d a c a r e e r i n t h e t h e a t r e . I t was w h i l e w o r k i n g on t h e A m e r i c a n s t a g e t h a t she r e l u c t a n t l y m a r r i e d a c o - w o r k e r who ended t h e i r m a r r i a g e soon a f t e r by c o m m i t t i n g s u i c i d e ; i n t r u e ( i f b i z a r r e ) t h e a t r i c a l s t y l e he jumped i n t o t h e C h a r l e s R i v e r i n B o s t o n d r e s s e d i n a s u i t o f s t a g e armour (Marcus E l i z a b e t h R o b i n s 2 1 ) . S h o r t l y t h e r e a f t e r R o b i n s , aged t w e n t y - s i x , d e p a r t e d f o r E n g l a n d ; i t was t o become he r permanent home. I t was i n London d u r i n g t h e 1890s t h a t she p l a y e d a s i g n i f i c a n t r o l e i n b r i n g i n g I b s e n ( w i t h h i s p e r c e i v e d r e v o l u t i o n a r y i d e a s ) t o c o n s e r v a t i v e B r i t i s h a u d i e n c e s . H a v i n g s e c u r e d p e r f o r m i n g r i g h t s t o Hedda G a b l e r , R o b i n s , i n p a r t n e r s h i p w i t h a n o t h e r A m e r i c a n , M a r i o n L e a , s t a g e d t h e f i r s t E n g l i s h p r o d u c t i o n of t h a t p l a y i n 1891, R o b i n s p l a y i n g Hedda t o L e a ' s T h e a . ( L e a had e a r l i e r a p p e a r e d as Mrs. L i n d e i n J a n e t A c h u r c h and C h a r l e s C h a r r i n g t o n ' s 1892 p r o d u c t i o n of A D o l l ' s House.) Two y e a r s l a t e r R o b i n s p r e s e n t e d E n g l a n d w i t h i t s f i r s t Rosmersholm and M a s t e r B u i l d e r . Of t h e l a t t e r she s t a t e d , "no o t h e r [ p l a y ] e v e r seemed so much mine" ( I b s e n and the A c t r e s s 4 7 ) . I t was as H i l d a Wangel, she t e l l s us, t h a t " I suppose I s c o r e d my g r e a t e s t t r i u m p h ; I c e r t a i n l y remember t h a t as t h e c r o w n i n g p l e a s u r e o f my t h e a t r i c a l l i f e " (Book News M o n t h l y 242, q u o t e d i n Marcus E l i z a b e t h R o b i n s 1 5 3 ) . The M a s t e r  B u i l d e r was f o l l o w e d i n 1896 by L i t t l e E y o l f , w h i c h c o n t a i n e d a c c o r d i n g t o H a r l e y G r a n v i l l e B a r k e r " p e r h a p s t h e most tremendous s i n g l e moment I have e v e r e x p e r i e n c e d i n a t h e a t r e " ("The Coming o f I b s e n " 1 8 0 ) . In each of t h e s e p r o d u c t i o n s R o b i n s was f o r c e d t o c i r c u m v e n t t h e a c t o r -manager s y s t e m . When she t r i e d to p e r s u a d e t h e e s t a b l i s h e d t h e a t r e managers o f the v a l u e of Hedda G a b l e r t h e i r r e s p o n s e was a v a r i e t y o f " T h e r e ' s no p a r t f o r me?" and "But t h i s i s a woman's p l a y , and an uncommon bad one a t t h a t " ( I b s e n and  the A c t r e s s 1 6 ) . F o r women o t h e r w i s e "condemned t o t h e "hack-work" o f t h e s t a g e ... [ w h i c h ] was what we c a l l e d p l a y i n g even the b e s t p a r t s i n p l a y s s e l e c t e d by t h e a c t o r -manager," I b s e n ' s " g l o r i o u s a c t a b l e s t u f f " ( I b s e n and t h e  A c t r e s s 33,31) p r o v e d i r r e s i s t i b l e . To have t h e o p p o r t u n i t y o f p l a y i n g s u c h r o l e s R o b i n s s u c c e s s f u l l y u n d e r t o o k a l l a s p e c t s o f s t a g e p r o d u c t i o n . As she d e s c r i b e d i t i n t h e c a s e o f The M a s t e r B u i l d e r ( c o - p r o d u c e d w i t h a c t o r H e r b e r t W a r i n g ) "[we] had not o n l y o u r s e l v e s t o t h i n k a b o u t , we had e v e r y b o d y e l s e ' s p a r t and c l o t h e s t o t h i n k a b o u t , t h e T i g h t n e s s of t h e s c e n e r y , t h e l i g h t i n g , t h e a d v e r t i s e m e n t s , t h e s e a t i n g — a l l the t h o u s a n d t h i n g s t h a t make up a p r o d u c t i o n a s a who l e " ( I b s e n and t h e A c t r e s s 4 4 ) . I t was not s u r p r i s i n g t h a t t h i s i n d e p e n d e n t and c a p a b l e a r t i s t who had, a t one s t r o k e , championed t h e c a u s e of t h e "new" woman and the "new" drama, would be drawn t o the s u f f r a g e movement. R o b i n s ' c o n v e r s i o n to t h e c a u s e , she t e l l s us, came on a c e r t a i n memorable a f t e r n o o n i n T r a f a l g a r S q u a r e when I f i r s t h e a r d women t a l k i n g p o l i t i c s i n p u b l i c . I went o u t o f shamefaced c u r i o s i t y , my head f u l l o f m a s c u l i n e c r i t i c i s m as to woman's l i m i t a t i o n s , h er well-known i n a b i l i t y t o s t i c k t o t h e p o i n t , h e r p o v e r t y i n l o g i c and i n humour, and t h e i m p o s s i b i l i t y , i n any c a s e , o f her c o p i n g w i t h t h e mob. I had f o u n d i n my own h e a r t h i t h e r t o no f i r m a s s u r a n c e t h a t t h e s e c h a r g e s were not a n c h o r e d i n f a c t . But on t h a t Sunday a f t e r n o o n , i n f r o n t of N e l s o n ' s Monument, a new c h a p t e r was begun f o r me i n t h e l e s s o n o f f a i t h i n t h e c a p a c i t i e s o f women. (Way S t a t i o n s 40) R o b i n s j o i n e d t h e Women's S o c i a l and P o l i t i c a l U n i o n i n 1906, r e m a i n i n g a committee member u n t i l 1912 when she, a l o n g w i t h o t h e r s , l e f t o v e r a d i s a g r e e m e n t c o n c e r n i n g m i l i t a n t t a c t i c s . She d e l i v e r e d her f i r s t s u f f r a g e s p e e c h i n th e f a l l o f 1906 and by A p r i l 1907 " S t . E l i z a b e t h " ( a s Shaw c a l l e d her f o l l o w i n g her e m p h a t i c d i s m i s s a l of h i s a d v a n c e s ) had once more "marched o n t o t h a t b a t t l e f i e l d ... [ o f ] t h e 14 s t a g e " ( I b s e n and t h e A c t r e s s 4 6 ) , t h i s t i m e as a p a r t i s a n s u p p o r t e r of t h e women's movement. Her p r i n c i p a l c o n t r i b u t i o n was what she h e r s e l f termed a " d r a m a t i c t r a c t " , a t h r e e - a c t p l a y e n t i t l e d V o t e s f o r Women, whi c h was p e r f o r m e d a t t h e C o u r t T h e a t r e as p a r t of t h e t h i r d r e p e r t o r y s e a s o n p r e s e n t e d by G r a n v i l l e B a r k e r and John V e d r e n n e . The C o u r t , under th e V e d r e n n e - B a r k e r management, was h a i l e d as London's " T h e a t r e o f I d e a s " (The C l a r i o n 19 A p r i l 1907 3 ) ; i t had a l r e a d y p r e s e n t e d a number of Shaw's d i s c u s s i o n p l a y s as w e l l as works by G r a n v i l l e B a r k e r h i m s e l f , c o n s i d e r e d by many a t t h e t i m e t o be a more i n t e l l e c t u a l Shaw. P e r h a p s i t was i n e v i t a b l e t h a t R o b i n s -" t h e f i r s t i n t e l l e c t u a l I had met on t h e s t a g e " a c c o r d i n g to Mrs. P a t r i c k C a m p b e l l (65) - s h o u l d have b r o u g h t h e r f e m i n i s t drama where i t s p o l i t i c a l c o n t e n t would be l o o k e d upon w i t h p a r t i c u l a r sympathy. G r a n v i l l e B a r k e r c o n s i d e r e d h i m s e l f " s t r o n g l y p r e j u d i c e d i n f a v o u r of i t s s u b j e c t " ( H a r r y Ransom H u m a n i t i e s R e s e a r c h C e n t e r , HRHRC) and a c c e p t e d t h e p i e c e f o r a l m o s t immediate p r o d u c t i o n . As B a r k e r put i t , "now i s u n d o u b t e d l y t h e t i m e f o r a t r a c t on t h e s u f f r a g e " (HRHRC). Henry James, a l o n g - t i m e c o r r e s p o n d e n t o f R o b i n s who s h a r e d her t h e a t r i c a l a s p i r a t i o n s , was e f f u s i v e a t t h e news: How p e r f e c t l y d e l i g h t f u l and a d o r a b l e and how a b s o l u t e l y and as i t s h o u l d be! I t ' s t h e one and o n l y way i n which th e P l a y s h o u l d be p r e s e n t e d : a n y t h i n g l e s s was, a l l the w h i l e , a most ' f e l l ' ( i n d e e d ! ) and i n f e r i o r p i s - a l l e r . I a l m o s t weep f o r j o y ; I c o n g r a t u l a t e you t o e x t r a v a g a n c e ; and I l o s e m y s e l f i n the v i s i o n o f how i n t e r e s t i n g and i n s p i r i n g and t r i u m p h a n t t h e whole b u s i n e s s i s now g o i n g t o be f o r you! ... How j o l l y and i n t e r e s t i n g to have G r a n v i l l e B a r k e r - an i n t e l l i g e n c e and a competence so g r e a t - t o work w i t h ! My b l e s s i n g s on him and the h e r o i c ( a s t h e y w i l l have to be,) r e h e a r s a l s ! ( T h e a t r e  and F r i e n d s h i p 266 ) One might be f o r g i v e n f o r d e t e c t i n g c o n d e s c e n s i o n i n s u c h h y p e r b o l e . C e r t a i n l y James was no s u p p o r t e r o f t h e movement; a c c o r d i n g t o V i o l e t Hunt, he even r e f u s e d t o s i g n h e r s u f f r a g e p e t i t i o n ( S h o w a l t e r 2 1 9 ) . A d e c i d e d l y d i f f e r e n t s i t u a t i o n p r e v a i l e d a t the C o u r t T h e a t r e where, a l o n g w i t h B a r k e r and Shaw, C o u r t w r i t e r s s u c h as John G a l s w o r t h y and L a u r e n c e Housman a c t i v e l y s u p p o r t e d t h e c a u s e . In s u c h company R o b i n s ' " t r a c t " went f o r w a r d , i n s i s t i n g , i n t h e m a r t i a l l a n g u a g e t h a t would become the common c o i n o f t h e s u f f r a g e movement, upon i t s s h a r e of " t h e most e f f e c t u a l weapon i n a l l man's armoury ... t h e Power o f t h e Word" (Way S t a t i o n s 2 9 ) . By her e n d e a v o u r R o b i n s hoped t o r a i s e woman's v o i c e i n t h a t most p u b l i c of f o r u m s , the t h e a t r e , and i n so d o i n g b e g i n t o f i l l i n t h e s i l e n c e t h a t she had f e l t t o be t r a d i t i o n a l l y woman's l o t . R o b i n s was p r o f o u n d l y c o mmitted t o t h e b e l i e f t h a t the f e m i n i s t movement was p r o v i d i n g women w i t h the s u p p o r t n e c e s s a r y t o a l l o w them t o speak w i t h t h e i r own v o i c e , t h a t t h e y were no l o n g e r a b s o l u t e l y c o n s t r a i n e d by a p a t r i a r c h a l hegemony wh i c h f o r c e d them " t o i m i t a t e as n e a r l y as p o s s i b l e t h e method, but above a l l the p o i n t o f view, of man" (Way  S t a t i o n s 5 ) . F e m i n i s t s , a l i v e t o t h e p o l i t i c a l , s o c i a l and c u l t u r a l c o n s e q u e n c e s o f b e i n g women, were now, a c c o r d i n g t o R o b i n s , i n a p o s i t i o n to speak on t h e i r own b e h a l f . In an a d d r e s s to the Women W r i t e r s ' S u f f r a g e League, g i v e n a t t h e C r i t e r i o n T h e a t r e on 23 May 1911, R o b i n s i n s i s t e d upon b o t h t h e p o l i t i c a l and a e s t h e t i c i m p l i c a t i o n s o f t h e v e n t u r e : Fellow-members o f t h e League, you have s u c h a f i e l d as n e v e r w r i t e r s had b e f o r e . An a l m o s t v i r g i n f i e l d . You a r e , i n r e s p e c t of l i f e d e s c r i b e d f e a r l e s s l y from the woman's s t a n d p o i n t - you a r e i n t h a t p o s i t i o n f o r w h i c h C h a u c e r has been so e n v i e d by h i s b r o t h e r - p o e t s , when th e y say he round the E n g l i s h l a n g u a g e w i t h the dew upon i t . You f i n d woman a t the dawn. C r i t i c s have o f t e n s a i d t h a t women's men a r e b a d l y drawn. L a d i e s , what s h a l l we say o f many of t h e g i r l s drawn by men? I t h i n k we s h a l l be s a f e r not t o s a y . But t h e r e she s t a n d s - the R e a l G i r l ! - w a i t i n g f o r you t o do her j u s t i c e . No mere c h o c o l a t e - b o x " t y p e , " but a c r e a t u r e o f _ i i r i n i t e v a r i e t y , of c u r i o s i t i e s and a m b i t i o n s , o f j o y i n p h y s i c a l a c t i o n , o f h i g h dreams o f l o v e and s e r v i c e , s h a r e r i n h e r b r o t h e r ' s " . . . e x u l t a t i o n s , a g o n i e s , / And man's u n c o n q u e r -a b l e s o u l . " The G r e a t A d v e n t u r e i s b e f o r e h e r . Your G r e a t A d v e n t u r e i s t o r e p o r t h e r f a i t h f u l l y . So t h a t h e r c h i l d r e n ' s c h i l d r e n r e a d i n g h er s t o r y s h a l l be l i f t e d up - proud and f u l l o f hope. "Of su c h s t u f f , " t h e y s h a l l s a y , "our mo t h e r s were! S w e e t h e a r t s and w i v e s - y e s , and o t h e r t h i n g s b e s i d e s : l e a d e r s , d i s c o v e r e r s , m i l i t a n t s , f i g h t i n g e v e r y f o r m o f wrong." (Way S t a t i o n s 250-1) In V o t e s f o r Women R o b i n s shows how s u c h g o a l s a r e t o be r e a l i z e d , p r e s e n t i n g C o u r t a u d i e n c e s w i t h a p r o t a g o n i s t meant t o s u p e r s e d e t h e " c h o c o l a t e box ' t y p e . ' " W h i l e i t i s t r u e t h a t V i d a L e v e r i n g i s "an a t t r a c t i v e , e s s e n t i a l l y f e m i n i n e and r a t h e r 'smart' woman o f t h i r t y - t w o " , h er good l o o k s a r e d e s i g n e d to be r e a d as an o v e r t p o l i t i c a l manoeuvre, a r e t o r t t o p e r v a s i v e s t e r e o t y p i n g o f s u f f r a g e women as " a l l dowdy and d u l l " ( 4 7 ) . S o mething o f an unknown q u a n t i t y ( s h e has been l i v i n g a b r o a d ) L e v e r i n g i s " t h e k i n d of [woman, a b o u t ] whom men and women a l i k e s a y , 'What's her s t o r y ? Why d o e s n ' t she m a r r y ? ' " ( 4 6 ) . The p l a y ' s s u b s e q u e n t a c t i o n emerges from j u s t s u c h q u e s t i o n s , as R o b i n s t r a n s f o r m s t h e " t a i n t e d " f e m a l e of p o p u l a r s o c i e t y drama i n t o a champion o f women's r i g h t s and s o c i a l j u s t i c e . ( L e v e r i n g ' s name i s p a r t i c u l a r l y a p t as t h r o u g h o u t t h e p l a y she s e r v e s t o " l i f t " up o t h e r women.) Ten y e a r s b e f o r e t h e p l a y b e g i n s , L e v e r i n g , h a v i n g " t a k e n o f f e n c e a t an u g l y t h i n g t h a t was g o i n g on under her f a t h e r ' s r o o f , " l e f t h i s house and went to London. An u p p e r - c l a s s woman u n s k i l l e d a t any t r a d e , she soon f o u n d h e r s e l f w i t h "an u n p a i d h o t e l b i l l , and not a s h i l l i n g i n t h e w o r l d . " By ch a n c e she met a f a m i l y " f r i e n d " who " s a i d he wanted to h e l p . " The r e s u l t : L e v e r i n g f o u n d h e r s e l f p r e g n a n t and her " f r i e n d " , t h e H o n o u r a b l e G e o f f r e y S t o n o r ( a g a i n t h e surname i s s u g g e s t i v e ) who saw b e f o r e him a b r i l l i a n t p o l i t i c a l c a r e e r , c o u n s e l e d a b o r t i o n , m a i n t a i n i n g t h a t an i l l e g i t i m a t e c h i l d would make i t i m p o s s i b l e t o win h i s f a t h e r o v e r to t h e i r f u t u r e m a r r i a g e . L e v e r i n g a c q u i e s c e d , but t h e " g h o s t o f a c h i l d t h a t had n e v e r seen t h e l i g h t ... was s t r o n g enough t o push [ S t o n o r ] o ut of [ h e r ] l i f e " ( 8 4 ) . Upon her r e t u r n t o E n g l a n d ( t h i s i s where t h e p l a y b e g i n s ) L e v e r i n g becomes swept up i n the s u f f r a g e c a u s e , r e c o g n i z i n g t h a t i t p r o v i d e s t h e means to f i g h t " t h e h e l p l e s s n e s s o f women" ( 4 9 ) . In t h e c o u r s e of th e p l a y L e v e r i n g r e - e n c o u n t e r s S t o n o r , now a s u c c e s s f u l T o r y MP r e a d y t o marry a young and b e a u t i f u l h e i r e s s . I n s p i r e d by L e v e r i n g , however, S t o n o r ' s young f i a n c e e a t t e n d s a s u f f r a g e r a l l y and i s c o n v e r t e d ; she a l s o comes t o l e a r n o f L e v e r i n g ' s " p a s t " and i n s i s t s t h a t her would-be 19 husband make amends. In h i s s u b s e q u e n t i n t e r v i e w w i t h L e v e r i n g , S t o n o r t o o becomes c o n v i n c e d o f t h e s u f f r a g e c a u s e and a t t h e p l a y ' s c o n c l u s i o n p r o m i s e s to s u p p o r t women's s u f f r a g e i n P a r l i a m e n t . Such a r e s o l u t i o n f a l l s , i n D e n n i s Kennedy's words, i n t o the r e a l m o f " d r a m a t i c f a n t a s y - as i f Helmer s u d d e n l y u n d e r s t o o d Nora and vowed t o change h i s ways i n t h e f u t u r e " (Dream of T h e a t r e 5 9 ) . In t h e c o n t i n u i n g s t r u g g l e f o r power t o d e f i n e "woman" and l o c a t e her p l a c e w i t h i n t h e p o l i t i c a l and s o c i a l h i e r a r c h y , V o t e s f o r Women can be r e a d as "a d i s p a t c h from t h e f r o n t , f i e r c e l y p a r t i s a n and m i l i t a n t " (Hynes 2 0 2 ) . B e l i e v i n g t h a t drama can be more t h a n i d e o l o g i c a l l y c o m p l i c i t , R o b i n s r e s h a p e s t h e c o n v e n t i o n s and t r a d i t i o n s of t h e l a t e V i c t o r i a n s t a g e t o p r e s e n t us w i t h " c o r r e c t i v e " r e p r e s e n t a t i o n s of women, b o t h on s t a g e and o f f . She a d a p t s f o r h e r own p u r p o s e s f e a t u r e s of t h e well-made p l a y and d r a w i n g - r o o m melodrama ( t h e advancement o f t h e ' p l o t ' l e a n s h e a v i l y upon t h e s e f o r m s ) ; i n a d d i t i o n A c t I r e v e a l s d e b t s t o t h e S h a v i a n / B a r k e r e s q u e d i s c u s s s i o n p l a y , A c t I I a r e l i a n c e on c o n v e n t i o n s o f n a t u r a l i s t t h e a t r e , and A c t I I I t h e i n f l u e n c e o f what was known as I b s e n ' s p s y c h o l o g i c a l 2 drama. To draw upon s u c h m a t e r i a l was p e r h a p s i n e v i t a b l e . 2 I n t h e words o f The Times (New Y o r k ) r e v i e w e r , t h e p l a y "has t h e t a n g o f Shaw, w i t h o u t h i s b r u t a l i t y , and t h a t i n s i g h t i n t o t h e h e a r t o f woman wh i c h i s P i n e r o ' s g r e a t e s t g i f t . ... Her f i r s t a c t i s l e i s u r e l y c o n v e r s a t i o n , her s e c o n d b l a z e s w i t h h o n e s t human p a s s i o n and h e r t h i r d i s f e m i n i n e p s y c h o l o g y " ( q u o t e d i n E l i z a b e t h R o b i n s 3 1 4 - 1 5 ) . To t h o s e l i k e R o b i n s , who b e l i e v e d t h e y were t h e f i r s t t o b e g i n t o speak out of a h i s t o r y o f s i l e n c e , t h e r e was as y e t no d i s c r e t e t r a d i t i o n o f women's t h e a t r e upon which t o b u i l d . C e r t a i n l y t h e r e had been women p l a y w r i g h t s , but what s m a l l s u c c e s s t h e y had e n j o y e d was m o s t l y due ( a c c o r d i n g to R o b i n s ) t o t h e i r a b i l i t y t o ape t h e w r i t i n g o f men, t o i m i t a t e t h e i r method as w e l l as t h e i r p o i n t o f view. In R o b i n s ' words, " A l l t h a t i s not s i l e n c e i s t h e v o i c e of man" (Way S t a t i o n s 4 ) . Or as L i s a T i c k n e r p o i n t s o ut i n her r e c e n t s t u d y of t h e i c o n o g r a p h y o f t h e s u f f r a g e campaign, " T h e r e was no a l t e r n a t i v e t r a d i t i o n of r e p r e s s e d but ' f e m i n i n e ' meanings t o b r i n g i n t o p l a y , no u l t i m a t e or e s s e n t i a l f e m i n i n i t y t o be u n v e i l e d b e h i n d t h e l a y e r s of ( m i s ) r e p r e s e n t a t i o n " ( 1 5 2 ) . In o r d e r t o be i n t e l l i g i b l e t o the women she wanted t o r e a c h , R o b i n s was c o m p e l l e d t o r e l y upon c o n v e n t i o n s and t r a d i t i o n s d e e p l y imbedded i n p a t r i a r c h a l a s s u m p t i o n s . But i n her r e c o n s t r u c t i o n of t h e s e r e s o u r c e s t o c r e a t e a new f e m i n i s t i d e o l o g y V o t e s f o r Women becomes a drama of her own. W h i l e t h e c o m p o s i t i o n o f t h e p l a y was marked by the s p e c i f i c i n t e r v e n t i o n of a number o f male w r i t e r s , R o b i n s seems t o have e x e r c i s e d f i n a l c o n t r o l o v e r t h e shape and d e t a i l s o f her work. G r a n v i l l e B a r k e r , we know, p r o v i d e d t h e p l a y w i t h i t s t i t l e . O r i g i n a l l y c a l l e d "a d r a m a t i c t r a c t , " B a r k e r recommended " a c c e n t u a t i n g t h e d e s c r i p t i o n ... by u s i n g some o b v i o u s p o l i t i c a l t i t l e ; t h i s w i l l f o c u s 21 a t t e n t i o n on t h a t s i d e of t h e p l a y which you want t o s t a n d o u t . The b e s t t h a t o c c u r s to me, o f c o u r s e , i s 'Votes f o r Women', t h e motto on the banner i n t h e se c o n d a c t . From a b u s i n e s s p o i n t o f view I s h o u l d t h i n k i t ' s good t o o " (HRHRC). B a r k e r o b v i o u s l y b e l i e v e d t h a t o v e r t l y p o l i t i c a l drama c o u l d be c o m m e r c i a l l y s u c c e s s f u l . T h a t i t c o u l d be c o n s i d e r e d a p o l i t i c a l t h r e a t t o t h e government was a l s o on B a r k e r ' s mind; i n a l e t t e r t o R o b i n s he e x p r e s s e d some c o n c e r n o v e r p o t e n t i a l p r o b l e m s w i t h the C e n s o r w h i c h a p p a r e n t l y d i d not m a t e r i a l i z e . G i v e n B a r k e r and Shaw's d i f f i c u l t i e s i n o b t a i n i n g l i c e n c e s t o p e r f o r m t h e i r own p o l i t i c a l dramas ( B a r k e r ' s s u b s e q u e n t l y banned Waste, c o n c e r n i n g an a b o r t i o n and a r i s i n g p o l i t i c i a n ' s s u b s e q u e n t f a l l f r o m g r a c e , has much i n common w i t h V o t e s f o r Women) one wonders whether the g r a n t i n g of a l i c e n c e was an example of t h e L o r d C h a m b e r l a i n ' s w h i m s i c a l i n c o n s i s t e n c y or e v i d e n c e o f a p a t r i a r c h y so smug as t o be u n p e r t u r b e d a t t h e p o s s i b i l i t y of any r e a l t h r e a t from s p e c i f i c a l l y women's . . . . 3 a g i t a t i o n . And y e t i f t h e C e n s o r s e e m i n g l y c h o s e n o t t o a c t , R o b i n s seems t o have i n v i t e d i n t e r v e n t i o n from o t h e r 3 C e r t a i n l y when he t e s t i f i e d b e f o r e t h e 1909 Committee on C e n s o r s h i p , B a r k e r . n o t e d t h a t t h e L o r d C h a m b e r l a i n ' s p l a y r e a d e r had r e q u i r e d t h a t he d e l e t e any r e f e r e n c e t o a b o r t i o n i n Was t e , a l t h o u g h , B a r k e r went on t o s t a t e , " I had m y s e l f p r o d u c e d a t t h e C o u r t T h e a t r e a few months b e f o r e under t h e L o r d C h a m b e r l a i n ' s l i c e n c e a p l a y t h e p l o t of which p a r t l y t u r n e d upon a c r i m i n a l o p e r a t i o n w h i c h was q u i t e o p e n l y r e f e r r e d t o on t h e s t a g e " ( q u o t e d i n McDonald 7 9 ) . q u a r t e r s . R e s p o n d i n g t o her r e q u e s t f o r s u g g e s t i o n s on t h e p l a y ' s r o u g h d r a f t ( i n November 1906), Henry James p r o v i d e d a number o f comments a l t h o u g h he q u a l i f i e s them as h a v i n g "a p o s s i b l e w o r t h as t e n t a t i v e , e l a s t i c , p l a s t i c o n l y - made t o be a d j u s t e d , t o be a r r a n g e d and f i t t e d , and c e r t a i n , I f e l t t o have to be r e h a n d l e d " ( T h e a t r e and F r i e n d s h i p 2 6 4 ) . In an e a r l i e r l e t t e r , however, he does i n d i c a t e a f u l l e r i n v o l v e m e n t : "What I want t o do i s t o d i c t a t e , f o r you, i n t y p e , some g r o p i n g g h o s t of a S c e n a r i o " ( T h e a t r e and  F r i e n d s h i p 2 6 4 ) . I t i s i m p o s s i b l e t o say how f a r R o b i n s t o o k h i s a d v i c e . We do know, however, t h a t t h e v e r s i o n o f the p l a y t h a t was p a s s e d t o B e r n a r d Shaw f o r h i s comments to w a r d s th e end of December 1906 underwent, a p p a r e n t l y as a r e s u l t of Shaw's a d v i c e , s u b s t a n t i a l a l t e r a t i o n s . Shaw's comments, w r i t t e n " i n g r e a t h a s t e t o c a t c h t h e p o s t , " were c o n c e r n e d w i t h t i g h t e n i n g up t h e s t a g e a c t i o n and s h a r p e n i n g t h e p l a y ' s f o c u s i n o r d e r to e n s u r e i t had " t h e s w i f t n e s s and body o f a melodrama" (HRHRC). Shaw s u g g e s t s c o m p r e s s i n g the f i r s t two a c t s i n t o a s i n g l e one by " c u t t i n g out a g r e a t d e a l of s m a l l t a l k " ( w h i c h seems t o have r e s u l t e d i n t h e d e l e t i o n o f a number o f c h a r a c t e r s and r e l a t i o n s h i p s ) , o m i t t i n g a c o n f u s e d f l u r r y o f comings and g o i n g s ( m o s t l y " m y s t e r i o u s v i s i t s t o the l i b r a r y " ) and f o c u s s i n g more c l e a r l y upon L e v e r i n g ' s p a s t and i t s r e l a t i o n s h i p to t h e s u f f r a g e theme. J u d g i n g f r o m th e p u b l i s h e d t e x t o f t h e p l a y 23 ( t h e r e a p p e a r t o be no rough d r a f t s i n e x i s t e n c e ) , R o b i n s c h o s e t o a c c e p t the a d v i c e . Shaw's s u b s e q u e n t s u g g e s t i o n s on t h e r e v i s e d v e r s i o n were not as r e a d i l y i n c o r p o r a t e d . On 8 March 1907 a f t e r B a r k e r had a c c e p t e d t h e p l a y f o r p r o d u c t i o n , Shaw p r o p o s e d t h a t R o b i n s c u t back on the f i r s t a c t w h i c h he f e l t was " e n o r m o u s l y too l o n g " or a l t e r n a t i v e l y to r e s t r u c t u r e i t a l o n g t h e l i n e s of The D o c t o r ' s Dilemma, r e a r r a n g i n g s c e n e s "so t h a t a l l t h e S u f f r a g e t t e p a r t g e t s t h o r o u g h l y t h r e s h e d out a t t h e b e g i n n i n g , and t h e n come t o the d r a m a t i c p a r t , w h i c h , once s t a r t e d , must go on w i t h i n c r e a s i n g momentum r i g h t up t o the c l i m a x a t the end" (HRHRC). R o b i n s i g n o r e d t h i s a d v i c e as w e l l as h i s f u r t h e r s u g g e s t i o n of d e l e t i n g a minor male c h a r a c t e r i n t h e f i r s t a c t . G r a n v i l l e B a r k e r e x p r e s s e d r e s e r v a t i o n s s i m i l a r t o Shaw's r e g a r d i n g t h e s t r u c t u r e o f the f i r s t a c t . W h i l e w i l l i n g t o admit t h a t i n h i s own p l a y s he wasn't p r i m a r i l y c o n c e r n e d w i t h ' g e t t i n g on w i t h th e s t o r y , ' B a r k e r n e v e r t h e l e s s f e l t t h a t R o b i n s ' l e n g t h y d i s c u s s i o n s c e n e between women c h a r a c t e r s c o n c e r n i n g a r e c e n t s u f f r a g e d e m o n s t r a t i o n was t o o l o n g an i n t e r r u p t i o n i n t h e f o r w a r d movement of t h e a c t . R o b i n s r e m a i n e d u n c o n v i n c e d and B a r k e r a g r e e d to l e a v e the " s c e n e p r a c t i c a l l y i n t a c t . I t was, I saw, most i n a d v i s a b l e t o d i s p e n s e w i t h i t " (HRHRC). B a r k e r a l s o added t h a t "a g r e a t d e a l o f p a t t e r f o r t h e crowd [ i n A c t I I ] w i l l want w r i t i n g i n . W i l l you do t h i s , or would you r a t h e r l e a v e i t t o me." 24 T h e r e i s no e v i d e n c e t o i n d i c a t e who s u p p l i e d t h i s a d d i t i o n a l d i a l o g u e a l t h o u g h t h e R o b i n s P a p e r s i n t h e F a l e s C o l l e c t i o n , New York U n i v e r s i t y , c o n t a i n " s e v e r a l t r a n s c r i p t s o f a c t u a l s u f f r a g e m e e t i n g s , and d e m o n s t r a t i o n s i n T r a f a l g a r Square w i t h each s p e e c h c a p t u r e d word by word, i n c l u d i n g t h e comments of t h e h e c k l e r s i n t h e crowd and the r e s p o n s e s of t h e s p e a k e r s " (Marcus The C o n v e r t v i i i ) . I t would seem odd t h a t R o b i n s would spend her t i m e c o l l e c t i n g t h i s m a t e r i a l and t h e n l e a v e i t t o B a r k e r t o w r i t e h er crowd " p a t t e r . " As i m p o r t a n t t o R o b i n s as her c o n t r o l o v e r t h e g e n e r a l d i r e c t i o n of her p l a y was her a t t e m p t to ( r e ) d e f i n e s p e c i f i c a l l y womanly b e h a v i o u r . G i v e n t h e s t r e n g t h of the p e r i o d ' s " s e p a r a t e s p h e r e s " f o r m u l a t i o n s , w h i c h s p e l l e d o ut p r o p e r male ( w o r k / p o 1 i t i c s ) and f e m a l e (home) a r e a s of e n d e a v o u r , t o compose w i t h i n what P a t r i c i a S t u b b s c a l l s the " n o n - p r i v a t i z e d form o f drama" was i t s e l f i n t e n d e d as an a c t of p r o v o c a t i o n . But su c h a move from the p r i v a t e and c o n t a i n e d w o r l d of t h e r e a l i s t n o v e l t o , f o r i n s t a n c e , t h e p u b l i c forum o f the t h e a t r e i s , a c c o r d i n g t o S t u b b s , " n e c e s s a r y i f women a r e to be f r e e d i n l i t e r a t u r e from the c l o s e d w o r l d o f p r i v a t e e x p e r i e n c e " ( 2 3 5 ) . To f r e e women from s u c h c o n s t r a i n t s was one o f R o b i n s ' o b j e c t i v e s i n composing V o t e s f o r Women, and r e f l e c t s a major g o a l o f the s u f f r a g e movement as a whole, which was i n s i s t i n g i n e v e r more adamant terms upon women's r i g h t t o engage i n t h e 25 p o l i t i c a l l i f e o f t h e n a t i o n . But i t i s not s i m p l y by w r i t i n g a s t a g e w o r t h y p l a y t h a t R o b i n s makes her p o i n t . The v e r y s t r u c t u r e o f t h e drama works as a r e f u t a t i o n o f t h e s e p a r a t e s p h e r e s p o s i t i o n . W h i l e A c t s I and I I I t a k e p l a c e i n what might i n a n o t h e r p l a y be t h e p r i v a t e w o r l d o f the home, R o b i n s ' a c t i o n o c c u r s i n the most ' p u b l i c ' rooms of v e r y s u b s t a n t i a l h o u s e s , A c t I i n t h e " H a l l of Wynnstay House" and A c t I I I i n the d r a w i n g room of a house i n E a t o n Square ( s i g n i f i c a n t l y the young f i a n c e e , J e a n D u n b u r t o n , e n t e r s f r o m h e r own s i t t i n g room w h i c h i s a t t a c h e d t o but s e p a r a t e from the d r a w i n g room). And the c o n v e r s a t i o n which t a k e s p l a c e i n t h e s e p u b l i c / p r i v a t e rooms i s l a r g e l y c o n c e r n e d w i t h p o l i t i c a l i s s u e s d i r e c t l y r e l a t i n g to women. In A c t I the p r e s s i n g need f o r p u b l i c h o u s i n g f o r t h e p o o r e s t o f hom e l e s s women i s d i s c u s s e d ( t h e i r o n y of t h e s e women's a c t u a l r e l a t i o n s h i p t o t h e i r " p r o p e r s p h e r e " i s u n d e r s c o r e d ) as w e l l as t h e c o n t i n u i n g demand f o r e n f r a n c h i s e m e n t and d i r e c t p a r t i c i p a t i o n i n t h e law-making p r o c e s s . A c t I I o v e r t l y c h a l l e n g e s t h e argument t h a t woman's p l a c e i s i n the home. I t shows a group of s u f f r a g e w o r k e r s a t a r a l l y i n T r a f a l g a r S quare p u b l i c l y d e m o n s t r a t i n g women's competence i n t h a t a r e n a . And not c o n t e n t m e r e l y t o emp h a s i z e t h e way t h a t the p u b l i c w o r l d i m p i n g e s upon the p r i v a t e , R o b i n s e n g i n e e r s t h e f u r t h e r d i s c l o s u r e of L e v e r i n g and S t o n o r ' s p r i v a t e h i s t o r y d u r i n g L e v e r i n g ' s f i r s t p u b l i c s p e e c h on women's ( l a c k o f ) r i g h t s . Of c o u r s e R o b i n s does more than c h a l l e n g e c o n t e m p o r a r y o r t h o d o x y on women's s u i t a b i l i t y f o r p o l i t i c a l l i f e . She i s c o n c e r n e d i n V o t e s f o r Women w i t h o f f e r i n g , as an a l t e r n a t i v e t o a p l e t h o r a of m a l e - d e f i n e d women, c o n v i n c i n g p o r t r a i t s of woman-defined women i n a l l t h e i r " i n f i n i t e v a r i e t y . " The s t r u g g l e p r o c e e d s on two l e v e l s - as an a c t o r h e r s e l f R o b i n s was committed t o p r o d u c i n g new and e x c i t i n g r o l e s f o r women i n p l a c e o f what she had c a l l e d t h e f e m a l e "hack-work" o f a m a l e - d o m i n a t e d t h e a t r e . And as a p o l i t i c a l l y a c t i v e f e m i n i s t she p r o c e e d e d on t h e b e l i e f t h a t t h e s i g h t of i n n o v a t i v e f e m a l e c h a r a c t e r s on s t a g e would h e l p t o i n v o k e t h e i r p r e s e n c e o f f - s t a g e as w e l l . To t h a t end she c r e a t e d V i d a L e v e r i n g . P u l l e d f r o m the pages of s o c i e t y drama w r i t t e n by t h e l i k e s o f O s c a r W i l d e , A r t h u r Wing P i n e r o and Henry A r t h u r J o n e s , L e v e r i n g i s a r e c o n s t r u c t i o n of t h e p o p u l a r "woman w i t h a p a s t . " C o n t r a r y to c o n v e n t i o n she i s not made t o s u f f e r i r r e v o c a b l y f o r her p a s t ; she i s n o t p r e s s e d t o s u i c i d e l i k e t he a s s e r t i v e P a u l a T a n q u e r a y i n P i n e r o ' s Second Mrs. T a n q u e r a y (1893) or f o r c e d out o f r e s p e c t a b l e s o c i e t y l i k e Mrs. Dane i n Henry A r t h u r J o n e s ' Mrs. Dane's D e f e n c e ( 1 9 0 0 ) . She i s under no c o m p u l s i o n t o remain f o r e v e r a b r o a d ( O s c a r W i l d e ' s Lady  Windermere's Fan ( 1 8 9 2 ) ) or r e t r e a t t o a l i f e o f r e l i g i o u s c o n t e m p l a t i o n ( P i n e r o ' s N o t o r i o u s Mrs. E b b s m i t h ( 1 8 9 5 ) ) . R o b i n s e x p l o d e s the c o n v e n t i o n a l p o r t r a i t u r e o f s u c h a woman, w i t h i t s v a l o r i z a t i o n of p a s s i v e a c q u i e s c e n c e to t h e male view and i t s c o n d e m n a t i o n of a s s e r t i v e b e h a v i o u r . F o r as l o n g as she w i s h e s L e v e r i n g r e m a i n s f r e e t o t r a v e l i n s o c i e t y ' s c i r c l e s ; as f o r her " p a s t " , she s a y s i n A c t I I I , "You d on't s e r i o u s l y b e l i e v e a woman w i t h a n y t h i n g e l s e to t h i n k a b o u t , comes t o the end of t e n y e a r s s t i l l a b s o r b e d i n a memory o f t h a t s o r t ? " ( 8 0 ) . In a n e a t i n v e r s i o n of the c o n v e n t i o n , S t o n o r ' s young f i a n c e e , J e a n D u n b u r t o n , becomes i n L e v e r i n g ' s words, " t h e O t h e r Woman" ( 8 3 ) . H a v i n g s t r i p p e d t h e "woman w i t h a p a s t " o f her c o n v e n t i o n a l a c c o u t r e m e n t s , R o b i n s r e i n v e s t s h er w i t h a f u t u r e , n ot the t r a d i t i o n a l f u t u r e o f t h e l o n g - s u f f e r i n g h e r o i n e , c o n s i s t i n g of r e q u i t e d l o v e w i t h t h e i d e a l husband i n a h a p p y - e v e r - a f t e r m a r r i a g e , but a f u t u r e of p u b l i c s e r v i c e to t h e cau s e of f e m a l e e m a n c i p a t i o n . And h e r e i s where R o b i n s p a r t s company w i t h a work l i k e Mrs Warren's  P r o f e s s i o n ( 1 8 9 3 ) , i n which Shaw r i n g s i n g e n i o u s v a r i a t i o n s upon the t a i n t e d woman, but l e a v e s K i t t y Warren i n t h e end b o t h a s e n t i m e n t a l i s t and t r a f f i c k e r i n women's b o d i e s . T h r o u g h her c h a r a c t e r i z a t i o n of L e v e r i n g R o b i n s o v e r t l y r e j e c t s b o t h t r a d i t i o n a l l o v e and m a r r i a g e as w e l l as Shaw's more s t r a i g h t f o r w a r d a t t e m p t t o s t a n d s u c h c o n v e n t i o n s upon t h e i r h e a d s . Her p l a y d o e s n ' t m e r e l y s t r a i n a g a i n s t t h e dominant i d e o l o g y , i t a t t e m p t s t o r e i n t e r p r e t i t from a s p e c i f i c a l l y f e m i n i s t p e r s p e c t i v e . , At t h e o u t s e t o f A c t I , t h e p l a y ' s p r o t a g o n i s t , V i d a L e v e r i n g , i s not on s t a g e . In i t s e l f t h i s i s no i n n o v a t i o n . No a c t o r - m a n a g e r worth h i s s a l t would throw away t h e e f f e c t o f a d e l a y e d e n t r a n c e . R o b i n s , however, uses c o n v e n t i o n a l s t a g e wisdom t o make b o t h a t h e a t r i c a l and t h e m a t i c p o i n t -L e v e r i n g ' s p r e p a r e d e n t r y becomes a means of e m p h a s i z i n g p o l i t i c a l i n e v i t a b i l i t y . I n s t e a d Lady John Wynnstay ( l i k e t h e o t h e r m a r r i e d women i n the p l a y she i s known o n l y by her husband's names) e n t e r s i m p a t i e n t t o f i n d h e r s u f f r a g e t t e f r i e n d . When t h e door f i r s t o pens, however, i t i s not L e v e r i n g who a p p e a r s but a young C o n s e r v a t i v e h o p e f u l , F a r n b o r o u g h , e a g e r to h i t c h h i m s e l f t o the Hon. G e o f f r e y S t o n o r ' s p o l i t i c a l e n t o u r a g e . He r e a d i l y a d m i t s h i s l a c k o f s u c c e s s w i t h L e v e r i n g , d e s p i t e L o r d J o h n ' s s u b s e q u e n t a s s e r t i o n t h a t " a l l she needs i s t o g e t some ' n i c e ' f e l l a t o marry h e r " ( 4 5 ) . What we a r e g i v e n h e r e i s a d e f i n i t i o n of L e v e r i n g from the male p o i n t of view; she i s d i s c u s s e d i n terms of a " m a t r i m o n i a l p r i z e " a l b e i t a d i f f i c u l t one to win. A c c o r d i n g t o F a r n b o r o u g h : She o n l y l a u g h s . ... She s a i d she knew she was a l l t h e c h a r m i n g t h i n g s I 'd been s a y i n g , but t h e r e was o n l y one way t o p r o v e i t - and t h a t was t o marry some one young enough t o be her so n . She'd n o t i c e d t h a t was what the most a t t r a c t i v e women d i d - and she named names. ... Her f u t u r e husband, she s a i d , was p r o b a b l y j u s t e n t e r i n g E t o n . (41) But F a r n b o r o u g h h a s n ' t come s e e k i n g m a t r i m o n i a l a d v i c e ; he wants Lady John Wynnstay t o use her i n f l u e n c e t o h e l p him s e c u r e a s e c r e t a r y s h i p to S t o n o r . Not, he h a s t e n s to add, t h a t she would be " i n t e r e s t e d i n p o l i t i c s qua p o l i t i c s , " but b e c a u s e i t i s a f a m i l y m a t t e r f o r her - S t o n o r i s " h e r nephew t h a t i s to be" ( 4 2 ) . Lady John i s , i n o t h e r words, t o e x e r c i s e her " i n d i r e c t i n f l u e n c e , " a c o n c e p t much t o u t e d by a n t i - s u f f r a g i s t s as a r e a s o n f o r not e x t e n d i n g the f r a n c h i s e to women. A c c o r d i n g t o the argument, women p o s s e s s e d t h r o u g h s u c h i n f l u e n c e - c h a r a c t e r i z e d by one c r i t i c as a r i s i n g f r o m "mere s e n s u a l i t y and p a s s i o n " r a t h e r t h a n " t h e h i g h r e g i o n s o f t h e i n t e l l e c t " ( B l e a s e 203) - s u f f i c i e n t c o n t r o l o v e r t h e i r own i n t e r e s t s to make i t u n n e c e s s a r y to c o n t a m i n a t e t h e i r e s s e n t i a l f e m i n i n i t y by d i r e c t c o n t a c t w i t h t h e e l e c t o r a l p r o c e s s . I r o n i c a l l y , g i v e n h i s a d o p t i o n of t h i s p e r s p e c t i v e , F a r n b o r o u g h p r o c e e d s t o c a r r y on w i t h Lady John an a n i m a t e d d i s c u s s i o n of t h e f o r t h c o m i n g e l e c t i o n and S t o n o r ' s e l e c t i o n e e r i n g t a c t i c s . They a r e i n t e r r u p t e d by t h e a r r i v a l of S t o n o r ' s e l a t e d f i a n c e e , J e a n D u n b a r t o n . In t h e o r i g i n a l p r o d u c t i o n she was c a l l e d B e a t r i c e , a p p a r e n t l y an o b s c u r e t r i b u t e t o t h e i n d e p e n d e n t - m i n d e d B e a t r i c e D ' E s t e , a t whose b i r t h , a c c o r d i n g t o R o b i n s , " t h e r e were no r e j o i c i n g s - b e c a u s e e v e r y o n e w i s h e d f o r a s o n . " R o b i n s goes on: " Y e t what boy of t h a t n o b l e house made so g r e a t a f i g u r e i n f i f t e e n t h - c e n t u r y 30 I t a l y - what P r i n c e of D ' E s t e e x e r c i s e d s u c h i n f l u e n c e upon a r t and p o l i t i c s as t h i s same B e a t r i c e ? " (Way S t a t i o n s 245-6 ) . In t h e p u b l i s h e d v e r s i o n o f the p l a y her name i s a l t e r e d t o J e a n , a f t e r Jeanne D'Arc, a f i g u r e c e n t r a l t o t h e l i t e r a t u r e and i c o n o g r a p h y of t h e S u f f r a g e movement. When she f i r s t e n t e r s , however, t h i s J e a n a p p e a r s as the c o n v e n t i o n a l young i n g e n u e , r i c h , b e a u t i f u l and o r p h a n e d , e a g e r to b r i n g h e r s e l f i n t o c o n f o r m i t y w i t h h e r f u t u r e husband's v i e w s w h i l e q u i c k t o r e c o g n i z e her own l i m i t a t i o n s : " W e l l , i f I do t h i n k w i t h my husband and f e e l w i t h him - a s , of c o u r s e , I s h a l l - i t w i l l s u r p r i s e me i f I e v e r f i n d m y s e l f t a l k i n g a t e n t h as w e l l " ( 4 5 ) . W i t h i n the e a r l y moments o f the p l a y , t h e n , R o b i n s manages to p r e s e n t a number o f c o n v e n t i o n a l p e r s p e c t i v e s on a p p r o p r i a t e f e m i n i n e i n t e r e s t s and b e h a v i o u r . But t h e y a r e h e l d up o n l y to be e f f e c t i v e l y d i s m a n t l e d by L e v e r i n g and r e p l a c e d , d u r i n g the c o u r s e of the p l a y , w i t h s p e c i f i c a l l y f e m i n i s t f o r m u l a t i o n s . L e v e r i n g 1 s e n t r a n c e i s i m m e d i a t e l y p r e c e d e d by t h a t of S t . John G r e a t o r e x , a s i x t y y e a r o l d w e a l t h y c o u n t r y magnate and L i b e r a l MP, w i t h "a r e p u t a t i o n f o r t e l l i n g good s t o r i e s a f t e r d i n n e r when l a d i e s have l e f t t h e room" ( 4 6 ) . He a p p e a r s as he s a y s to " p r o t e s t M i s s L e v e r i n g b e i n g c a r r i e d o f f to d i s c u s s a n y t h i n g so r e v o l t i n g . B l e s s my s o u l ! what can a woman l i k e you know about i t ? " ( 4 6 ) . The t o p i c of c o n v e r s a t i o n ? P u b l i c S a n i t a t i o n or as G r e a t o r e x p u t s i t , "God b l e s s my s o u l , do you r e a l i s e t h a t ' s d r a i n s ? " I t was a s u b j e c t f i t n e i t h e r f o r p r o p e r l a d i e s or f o r the s t a g e . L e v e r i n g i n t r o d u c e s i t t o b o t h , p r o v i d i n g Shaw w i t h a t o p i c he would c o n s i d e r i n h i s 1910 p l a y , M i s a l l i a n c e . W i t h i n s u c h a c o n t e x t , L e v e r i n g ' s f e m i n i n i t y ( s h e i s a t t r a c t i v e and w e l l - d r e s s e d ) becomes a d e l i b e r a t e a t t e m p t to c o u n t e r p r e v a i l i n g s t e r e o t y p e s of s u f f r a g e s u p p o r t e r s as g a u n t , mannish, i l l - m a n n e r e d , ^ and of c o u r s e h y s t e r i c a l , h y s t e r i a b e i n g t h e p e r i o d ' s " s c i e n t i f i c " e x p l a n a t i o n f o r su c h " u n n a t u r a l " f e m a l e b e h a v i o u r . Such women were u s u a l l y p i c t u r e d i n s e v e r e and da r k s u i t s ( l a d i e s wore w h i t e , or a t l e a s t l i g h t - c o l o u r e d d r e s s e s ) w i t h m andatory b i g b o o t s and u m b r e l l a s f u r l e d f o r b a t t l e . The s t e r e o t y p e was a c t u a l l y a c o m p o s i t e drawn from e a r l i e r c a r i c a t u r e s of t h e 1890s "new woman" and the a l w a y s p o p u l a r c a r t o o n s of t h e f r u s t r a t e d s p i n s t e r . G r e a t o r e x p a i n t s the t y p e i n g r a p h i c d e t a i l when he s u g g e s t s to L e v e r i n g t h a t she l e a v e s u c h m a t t e r s as d r a i n s to . . . t h e s o r t of woman who s m e l l s o f i n d i a r u b b e r . The t y p i c a l E n g l i s h s p i n s t e r . You know - I t a l y ' s A C i c e l y H a m i l t o n n o t e d t h a t w h i l e n o n - m i l i t a n t s u f f r a g e o r g a n i z a t i o n s had no " c o s t u m e - c o d e " the WSPU a t t a c h e d g r e a t i m p o r t a n c e to f e m i n i n e d r e s s and a p p e a r a n c e . A c c o r d i n g to H a m i l t o n the " t a b o o o f the s e v e r e r forms of garment was due, i n p a r t , t o d i s l i k e o f the l e g e n d a r y i d e a of t h e s u f f r a g e t t e , as m a s c u l i n e i n manner and a p p e a r a n c e — m a n y o f th e m i l i t a n t s were e x t r a o r d i n a r i l y t o u c h y on t h a t p o i n t " ( L i f e E r r a n t 7 5 ) . H a m i l t o n a l s o saw a c o n n e c t i o n between the WSPU's c o n c e r n w i t h d r e s s and what she c a l l e d t h e " c o m b a t i v e i m p u l s e , " o b s e r v i n g t h a t a l l s o l d i e r s " a r e i n c l i n e d t o be f u s s y about t h e i r p e r s o n a l a p p e a r a n c e " ( 7 6 ) . F o r a f u r t h e r d i s c u s s i o n of s u f f r a g e t t e d r e s s see M a r t h a V i c i n u s ' I n d e p e n d e n t VJomen 263-4. f u l l o f h e r . She ne v e r goes anywhere w i t h o u t a m a c k i n t o s h and a c o l l a p s i b l e b a t h - r u b b e r . When you l o o k a t h e r , i t ' s b o r n e i n upon you t h a t she d o e s n ' t o n l y s m e l l o f r u b b e r . She's r u b b e r t o o . (46) The u n m a r r i e d L e v e r i n g 1 s p h y s i c a l a p p e a r a n c e s e r v e s as a s u f f i c i e n t r e b u t t a l . Her s t a g e p r e s e n c e i s a l s o a r e s p o n s e to t h e drama's p r e v a i l i n g d e p i c t i o n o f t h e "a d v a n c e d woman," the most p o p u l a r r e n d i t i o n of t h e t y p e b e i n g E l a i n e S h r i m p t o n i n J o n e s ' Case o f R e b e l l i o u s Susan ( 1 8 9 4 ) . S h r i m p t o n i s d e s c r i b e d as "a raw, s e l f - a s s e r t i v e modern young l a d y , w i t h b r u s q u e and d e c i d e d manner" ( 1 2 0 ) . A c c o r d i n g to S i r R i c h a r d K a t o , Q.C., t h e p l a y ' s s u p p o s e d v o i c e of r e a s o n , she " i s a r a t h e r i g n o r a n t , i m p u l s i v e g i r l , w i t h a s m a t t e r i n g of p s e u d o s c i e n t i f i c knowledge, c h i e f l y p i c k e d up from unwholesome f e m i n i n e n o v e l s " ( 1 2 2 ) . In the f a s h i o n columns of The S k e t c h t h e "tweed c o a t and s k i r t , d o u b l e - b r e a s t e d w a i s t c o a t and wide-brimmed f e l t h a t " (10 Oct 1894 613) wh i c h she wears i n A c t I I I ( a s she a t t e m p t s to d e l i v e r a s p e e c h on t h e f u t u r e of women) i s c o n t r a s t e d w i t h t h e " d e l i g h t f u l gowns" worn by t h e p l a y ' s o t h e r women. P i n e r o a l s o engaged i n the m a n u f a c t u r e of su c h s t e r e o t y p e s . In The Weaker Sex (1884; 1889) he a t t e m p t s t o d e m o n s t r a t e by what A r c h e r c a l l e d , " t h e most b a r e f a c e d p s y c h o l o g i c a l j u g g l e r y , t h a t women were i n c o m p e t e n t t o t a k e any s e r i o u s p a r t i n t h e n o n - d o m e s t i c work of t h e w o r l d . " H i s p r o o f , A r c h e r c o n t i n u e s , c o n s i s t s o f "showing two m i d d l e - a g e d 33 widows, p r o m i n e n t i n the f e m i n i s t movement, who a c c e p t as t h e i r m a s c u l i n e champion a b l i t h e r i n g i d i o t o f an M.P., and t h e m s e l v e s c o l l a p s e i n t o s o m e t h i n g v e r y l i k e i d i o c y the moment the p r o s p e c t of a s e c o n d m a r r i a g e i s d a n g l e d b e f o r e t h e i r e y e s " (The O l d Drama and the New 2 8 8 ) . The s i z e o f s u c h women's f e e t n a t u r a l l y comes up f o r d i s c u s s i o n : Lady V i v a s h . Have any o f our l a d i e s a r r i v e d ? D u d l e y . I t h i n k s o . Lady V i v a s h . Indeed? D u d l e y . I saw some g o l o s h e s i n t h e h a l l as I came i n . Lady V i v a s h . I wear g o l o s h e s i n t h e damp w e a t h e r . P e r h a p s t h e y a r e mine. D u d l e y . P e r h a p s ; I . d i d n ' t know a t f i r s t whether th e y were g o l o s h e s . Lady V i v a s h . What d i d you t a k e them f o r ? D u d l e y . G o n d o l a s . Lady V i v a s h . Oh! A f t e r a l l , t h e s i z e o f a woman's f o o t i s i m m a t e r i a l . A woman d o e s n ' t c a r r y her h e a r t i n her b o o t s . D u d l e y . She d o e s - - i f you say "Boo" i n t h e d a r k . (14) R o b i n s c o n s t r u c t s the f i g u r e of L e v e r i n g t o c h a l l e n g e t h e s t r e n g t h of s u c h s t e r e o t y p e s and t o c l a i m f o r f e m i n i s t s t h e womanly a t t r i b u t e s so s t r e n u o u s l y d e n i e d them by t h e i r o p p o n e n t s . But i t was to p r o v e a d i f f i c u l t s t r u g g l e . Of a l a t e r s u f f r a g e m e e t i n g a t t h e C r i t e r i o n R e s t a u r a n t ( a b o v e t h e t h e a t r e i n which The Case of R e b e l l i o u s Susan had had i t s p r e m i e r e ) , a w r i t e r f o r The R e f e r e e w r o t e : " I s a t e x p e c t i n g t h a t S i r R i c h a r d Kato would pop i n f r o m the t h e a t r e below and would say what he i s s a y i n g n i g h t l y t o the b o l d E l a i n e : 'There i s an immense f u t u r e f o r women as w i v e s and m o t h e r s , and a v e r y l i m i t e d f u t u r e f o r them i n any o t h e r c a p a c i t y . . . Go home!'" (5 June 1910 i n v o l 10 A r n c l i f f e -S e n n e t t P a p e r s ) . And The Times r e v i e w e r of V o t e s f o r Women f e l t i t n e c e s s a r y to ask, "Why, by t h e way [ i f she i s n ' t " y e a r n i n g to be m a r r i e d " ] , does M i s s L e v e r i n g t a k e s u c h c a r e t o make the b e s t o f h e r good l o o k s and p r e t t y f i g u r e and wear s u c h c h a r m i n g f r o c k s ? I s i t t o p l e a s e o t h e r women?" ( 5 ) . He i s magnanimous enough to add " t h a t the c a u s e would make much more headway than i t does i f a l l i t s a d v o c a t e s were as f a i r to l o o k upon, as a g r e e a b l e t o h e a r , and as b e a u t i f u l l y d r e s s e d as M i s s Wynne M a t h i s o n [who p l a y e d L e v e r i n g ] . " In o t h e r words f e m i n i s t s were e i t h e r t o be d i s m i s s e d as r i d i c u l o u s i m i t a t o r s o f men, or t h e y were to be c o n t a i n e d by the c o n v e n t i o n a l view w h i c h l i m i t e d them to u s i n g t h e i r s e x u a l i t y as a l u r e to win men t o t h e i r p o i n t of v i e w . F e m i n i s t s l i k e R o b i n s were not p r e p a r e d t o a c c e p t s u c h a s t a t e of a f f a i r s and c o n t i n u e d t o i n s i s t upon the a b i l i t y o f women to r e t a i n t h e i r f e m i n i n i t y and a t the same time engage i n an o r g a n i z e d s t r u g g l e f o r s o c i a l and p o l i t i c a l c h a n g e . D e f i n i n g f e m i n i n i t y w i t h i n the s p e c i f i c framework of the f i g h t f o r e n f r a n c h i s e m e n t was t o p r o v e a c o n t i n u i n g s o u r c e of d e b a t e , a s i t u a t i o n r e f l e c t e d i n V o t e s f o r Women. S h o r t l y a f t e r L e v e r i n g a p p e a r s i n the p l a y , t h e f o r w a r d movement of the s t o r y g r i n d s to a h a l t and t h e c h a r a c t e r s f a l l t o d i s c u s s i n g ( i n a f a s h i o n r e m i n i s c e n t o f G r a n v i l l e B a r k e r ) " t h a t rowdy scene a t the House of Commons" ( 4 7 ) , an e v e n t t h a t a c t u a l l y took p l a c e on 25 A p r i l 1906, when Lab o u r MP K e i r H a r d i e i n t r o d u c e d a r e s o l u t i o n t h a t sex s h o u l d be no bar to P a r l i a m e n t a r y f r a n c h i s e . WSPU s u p p o r t e r s were i n a t t e n d a n c e i n the L a d i e s ' G a l l e r y b e h i n d t h e g r i l l e , and th e y watched as the r e s o l u t i o n was a i m l e s s l y d e b a t e d and r i d i c u l e d by Members of P a r l i a m e n t . W h i s p e r e d p r o t e s t s c o u l d be h e a r d . Then, as S y l v i a P a n k h u r s t , a f o u n d i n g member of the WSPU, 5 r e l a t e s i t : S u d d e n l y one of our women l o o k e d r o u n d and saw p o l i c e m e n r a n g e d a g a i n s t t h e w a l l of the g a l l e r y b e h i n d u s . They were t h e r e i n o b e d i e n c e t o the S p e a k e r ' s o r d e r to t u r n us out s h o u l d we make any more 5 Jane Marcus c h a r a c t e r i z e s The S u f f r a g e t t e Movement, S y l v i a P a n k h u r s t ' s s o c i a l i s t f e m i n i s t h i s t o r y of the p e r i o d , as a " t r a g i c f a m i l y romance" i n wh i c h P a n k h u r s t p i c t u r e s h e r s e l f as engaged i n b a t t l e w i t h an i n c r e a s i n g l y w i c k e d / a r i s t o c r a t i c mother and s i s t e r . I t i s a "drama" t h a t M arcus b e l i e v e d most i n f l u e n c e d George D a n g e r f i e l d ' s h i g h l y t h e a t r i c a l r e n d i t i o n of the s u f f r a g e movement as "comic f a r c e " i n h i s e x t r e m e l y i n f l u e n t i a l and " h a r d l y c h a l l e n g e d " S t r a n g e Death of L i b e r a l E n g l a n d . I t i s , a c c o r d i n g t o Mar c u s , an h i s t o r i c a l p l o t t h a t needs r e c o n s i d e r a t i o n ( I n t r o S u f f r a g e and the P a n k h u r s t s ) . n o i s e . The s i g h t p r e c i p i t a t e d t h e d e m o n s t r a t i o n ; I r e n e M i l l e r s h o u t e d : ' D i v i d e ! D i v i d e ! ' as Members do on the f l o o r of the House. ' D i v i d e ! d i v i d e ! We r e f u s e to have our R e s o l u t i o n t a l k e d o u t ! ' The r e s t of us a l l j o i n e d i n : ' D i v i d e ! D i v i d e ! ' T h e r e s a B i l l i n g t o n t h r u s t a l i t t l e w h i t e f l a g t h r o u g h the g r i l l e . We l a u g h e d as t h e p o l i c e came r u s h i n g down ove r the t i e r s of s e a t s to d r a g us o u t . (210) And l i t e r a l l y " d r a g g e d o u t " the y were, a r t i c l e s of c l o t h i n g l o s t i n the s t r u g g l e l a t e r d e p o s i t e d i n P a l a c e Y a r d . The weekend d i s c u s s a n t s i n V o t e s f o r Women r e a c t to the e p i s o d e i n p r e d i c t a b l e f o r m . G r e a t o r e x d i s m i s s e s t h e p r o t e s t e r s as "a few d i s c o n t e n t e d o l d maids and hungry widows" (47) - " P u b l i c n u i s a n c e s ! G o i n g about w i t h dog whips and s p i t t i n g i n p o l i c e m e n ' s f a c e s " ( 5 5 ) . B i l l i n g t o n had i n f a c t used a dog whip to d e f e n d h e r s e l f from "some i n s u l t s not to be borne meekly" when she was e j e c t e d from a m e e t i n g h e l d f o r t h e f u t u r e Prime M i n i s t e r , A s q u i t h , the p r e v i o u s June ( B i l l i n g t o n 4 3 ) . S e x u a l m o l e s t a t i o n was not uncommonly d i r e c t e d a g a i n s t p r o t e s t i n g S u f f r a g e t t e s (a name c o i n e d to d i s t i n g u i s h members of the r a d i c a l WSPU from the more law-a b i d i n g p r o t e s t o r s of o t h e r s u f f r a g e s o c i e t i e s ) , and B i l l i n g t o n a s s e r t e d t h a t i n the e a r l y y e a r s o f the s u f f r a g e s t r u g g l e i t was " t h e one o c c a s i o n upon w h i c h we have been d e l i b e r a t e l y a g g r e s s i v e " ( 4 2 ) . C h r i s t a b e l P a n k h u r s t , d e t e r m i n e d to s e c u r e a r r e s t a t the f i r s t m i l i t a n t p r o t e s t i n 1905, had been g u i l t y of s p i t t i n g : " I t was not a r e a l s p i t but o n l y , s h a l l we c a l l i t , a pout, a p e r f e c t l y d r y p u r s e of the mouth" (Raeburn 9 ) . I t was enough, however, t o c o n s t i t u t e a s s a u l t upon the p o l i c e . In V o t e s f o r Women, the young C o n s e r v a t i v e , F a r n b o r o u g h , i s q u i c k to o f f e r v i o l e n c e i n r e t u r n ; he p r o p o s e s g i v i n g the p r o t e s t o r s "a good t h r a s h i n g " and h a v i n g t h e m - a l l " l o c k e d up! E v e r y one o f 'em" ( 5 5 ) . A s o c i e t y widow, Mrs. H e r i o t , l a m e n t s t h e d e m o n s t r a t i o n ' s u n f e m i n i n e n a t u r e : "No d e c e n t woman w i l l be a b l e to say ' S u f f r a g e ' w i t h o u t b l u s h i n g f o r a n o t h e r g e n e r a t i o n " ( 4 7 ) . S i g n i f i c a n t l y , t h i s s t a t e m e n t i s made i n t h e p r e s e n c e of men. R o b i n s a r r a n g e s m a t t e r s , however, so t h a t a l l the male c h a r a c t e r s s u b s e q u e n t l y l e a v e t h e s t a g e and the women a l o n e d i s c u s s the d e m o n s t r a t i o n . F r e e from t h e i r c o n s t r a i n i n g p r e s e n c e , Mrs. F r e d d y T u n b r i d g e , a c o n s t i t u t i o n a l s u f f r a g i s t p r e s e n t a t the p r o t e s t , a r g u e s a t c o n s i d e r a b l e l e n g t h t h a t t h e m i l i t a n t s have e n d a n g e r e d her own " g r a d u a l " a p p r o a c h . Her e a r l i e r a t t e m p t t o d i s c u s s the i s s u e had been c u t s h o r t : she " c a t c h e s her husband's eye, and i n s t a n t l y c h e c k s her f l o w of words." ( 5 5 ) ^ : T h e r e we a l l s a t b r e a t h l e s s - w i t h e v e r y t h i n g more f a v o u r a b l e to us t h a n i t had been w i t h i n the memory of women. A n o t h e r f i v e m i n u t e s and 6 I t was Mr. F r e d d y T u n b r i d g e t h a t Shaw recommended d e l e t i n g f r o m the p l a y . the R e s o l u t i o n would have p a s s e d . Then ... a l l i n a moraent - . . . A l l i n a moment a h o r r i b l e d i n g y l i t t l e f l a g was poked t h r o u g h the g r i l l o f t h e Woman's G a l l e r y - c r i e s - i n s u l t s - s c u f f l i n g - t h e p o l i c e - the i g n o m i n i o u s t u r n i n g out of the women - _us_ as w e l l as the - Oh, I c a n ' t t h i n k of i t w i t h o u t ... Then the n e x t m o r n i n g ! The p e o p l e g l o a t i n g . Our f r i e n d s a n t a g o n i s e d -p e o p l e who were w a v e r i n g - n e a r l y won o v e r -a l l thrown back - h e a r t b r e a k i n g ! ( 5 7 ) T h i s i s j u s t the o p e n i n g needed f o r L e v e r i n g ' s d e f e n c e of r a d i c a l i s m . No member of the " S h r i e k i n g S i s t e r h o o d , " a n o t h e d e r o g a t o r y image used to d i s c r e d i t s u f f r a g e a c t i v i s t s , she s u g g e s t s w i t h q u i e t d i g n i t y t h a t the p r o t e s t o r s have waked up i n t e r e s t i n the Woman Q u e s t i o n . ... Don't you t h i n k t h e y know t h e r e ' s been more s a i d and w r i t t e n about i t i n t h e s e t e n days s i n c e t h e s c e n e , than i n the t e n y e a r s b e f o r e i t . ... I'm o n l y p o i n t i n g out t h a t i t seems not s u c h a bad way to get i t known th e y d_o want s o m e t h i n g - and 'want i t bad.' ( 5 7 ) To t u r n to the h i s t o r i c a l c o n t e x t from w h i c h th e p l a y emerged, we might ask why c e r t a i n women wanted the v o t e so b a d l y t h a t they were p r e p a r e d to s u f f e r not o n l y r i d i c u l e and contempt but a l s o o u t r i g h t v i o l e n c e . E v e l y n Sharp s u g g e s t e d a t the time t h a t i t was because s u f f r a g e t t e s r e c o g n i z e d " t h e p o l i t i c a l f u t i l i t y o f the v o t e l e s s r e f o r m e r " ( S h a r p 1 2 9 ) . L i k e R o b i n s ' L e v e r i n g , they were s h o c k e d by the p o v e r t y and h a r d s h i p of many women's and c h i l d r e n ' s l i v e s , a c o n d i t i o n to which a number of m i d d l e and u p p e r - c l a s s women had been e x p o s e d t h r o u g h " p r o p e r " p h i l a n t h r o p i c work ("making u g l y t h i n g s f o r the p o o r " as W i l d e ' s Duchess of B e r w i c k p u t s i t ) . And a t l e a s t w i t h i n the c o n t e x t of V o t e s  f o r Women i t c o u l d not be a r g u e d t h a t a g i t a t i o n f o r the v o t e was " m e r e l y an e x p r e s s i o n of the b o u r g e o i s d e s i r e f o r women's e q u a l i t y w i t h i n the p r e s e n t unchanged p a t r i a r c h a l and l a t e c a p i t a l i s t s y s t e m " (Todd 5 6 ) . The v o t e i t s e l f became a symbol of freed o m , and s e r v e d as a r a l l y i n g p o i n t f o r p r o t e s t , but as R o b i n s makes c l e a r i n t h e p l a y , many f e m i n i s t s p u r s u e d changes f a r more p r o f o u n d . They r e c o g n i z e d a d i r e c t l i n k between p o l i t i c a l , s e x u a l and economic o p p r e s s i o n , and r e j e c t e d the p o s s i b i l i t y of a s i m p l e i n t e g r a t i o n i n t o the e x i s t i n g s o c i a l o r d e r . They s o u g h t power to d e c o n s t r u c t a d o m i n a t i n g p a t r i a r c h a l i d e o l o g y , r e i n s c r i b i n g i t w i t h f e m i n i s t f o r m u l a t i o n s . In V o t e s f o r Women the s t r u g g l e i s c a s t as a war between the s e x e s : Lady John ...: We o u g h t n ' t to do a n y t h i n g or say a n y t h i n g to e n c o u r a g e t h i s f e r m e n t of f e m i n i s m , and I ' l l t e l l you why; i t ' s l i k e l y t o b r i n g a v e r y t e r r i b l e t h i n g i n i t s t r a i n . M i s s L e v e r i n g : What t e r r i b l e t h i n g ? Lady J o h n : Sex a n t a g o n i s m . M i s s L e v e r i n g ( r i s i n g ) : I t ' s h e r e . Lady John ( v e r y g r a v e l y ) : Don't say t h a t . ... M i s s L e v e r i n g ( t o Lady J o h n ) : Y o u ' r e so c o n s c i o u s i t ' s h e r e , y o u ' r e a f r a i d to have i t m e n t i o n e d . (59) L e v e r i n g a l i g n s h e r s e l f w i t h h er own sex, and r e c o g n i z i n g t h a t h er p e r s o n a l economic i n d e p e n d e n c e p r o v i d e s her w i t h a c e r t a i n power - " I b e l o n g e d t o the l i t t l e c l a s s of armed women. My body wasn't born weak, and my s p i r i t wasn't br o k e n by the h a b i t of s l a v e r y " (51) - she engages i n "an e f f o r t , to meet the g r e a t e s t e v i l i n t h e w o r l d , ... t h e h e l p l e s s n e s s of women" (49). She comes to Wynnstay H a l l to work on p l a n s f o r a s h e l t e r f o r h o m e l e s s women who have been b o t h e c o n o m i c a l l y and s e x u a l l y v i c t i m i z e d , r e c o u n t i n g , by way of example, the s t o r y of one young g i r l " d y i n g i n a Tramp Ward": ...she had been i n s e r v i c e . She l o s t the t r a i n back one Sunday n i g h t and was too t e r r i f i e d o f her employ e r to da r e r i n g him up a f t e r h o u r s . The wrong p e r s o n f o u n d her c r y i n g on t h e p l a t f o r m . . . . Two n i g h t s ago she was w a i t i n g a t a s t r e e t c o r n e r i n the r a i n . ...She was p l a i n l y d y i n g - she was t o l d she s h o u l d n ' t be out i n t h e r a i n . 'I mustn't go i n y e t ' she s a i d . ' T h i s i s what he gave me,' and she began to c r y . In her hand were two p e n n i e s s i l v e r e d o v e r to l o o k l i k e h a l f - c r o w n s . (50) I t i s l e f t to R o b i n s ' men to p r o t e c t t h i s p o l i t i c a l and s o c i a l s t a t u s quo: t h e L i b e r a l MP G r e a t o r e x r e f u s e s t o meet a d e l e g a t i o n of women because " t h e r e i s n ' t a weekender among 'em" -(48) and S t o n o r h i m s e l f s u g g e s t s i n A c t I I I t h a t h i s " c o n v e r s i o n " has as much to do w i t h p o l i t i c a l o p p o r t u n i s m as i t does w i t h a r e a l sympathy f o r the s u f f r a g e c a u s e : " a f t e r a l l ... women a r e much more c o n s e r v a t i v e than men - a r e n ' t t h e y ? " ( 7 5 ) . S t o n o r l i k e L e v e r i n g makes a l a t e e n t r a n c e i n A c t I, and h i s a r r i v a l c a u s e s a g r e a t s e n s a t i o n among t h e wee k e n d e r s . But h i s p a s t i n v o l v e m e n t w i t h L e v e r i n g i s pushed to the b a c k g r o u n d . I t emerges o n l y i n the l a s t moments of the A c t when the " s t o r y " i s r e - i n t r o d u c e d by means of a d e v i c e f r o m the well-made p l a y t r a d i t i o n ; S t o n o r i d e n t i f i e s L e v e r i n g ' s s t r a t e g i c a l l y d r o p p e d h a n d k e r c h i e f by t h e name e m b r o i d e r e d on i t s c o r n e r b u t , as h i s f i a n c e e a s k s s i g n i f i c a n t l y , "I_ d i d n ' t know her name was V i d a ; how d i d you?" ( 6 0 ) . The c u r t a i n f a l l s on S t o n o r ' s s i l e n c e . When i t r i s e s a g a i n , f e m i n i s t i s s u e s have once more been pushed to the f o r e g r o u n d - i n the words of the d i s a p p r o v i n g Athenaeum c r i t i c , " l u g g e d i n by the head and s h o u l d e r s , and h a v i n g n o t h i n g t o do w i t h the s e r i o u s i n t e r e s t " (13 A p r i l 1907 4 5 2 ) . In A c t I I R o b i n s r e c r e a t e s a s u f f r a g e r a l l y a t " t h e n o r t h s i d e o f the N e l s o n Column i n T r a f a l g a r S q u a r e " ( 6 1 ) . A posed p h o t o g r a p h of the sc e n e shows the s p e a k e r s a s s e m b l e d on a r a i s e d p l i n t h a t t h e r e a r of the s t a g e ; a t t a c h e d t o the base o f the column b e h i n d them a r e b a n n e r s r e a d i n g " V o t e s f o r Women." In f r o n t , r a n g e d a l o n g the f o o t - l i g h t s , i s a crowd of r e p r e s e n t a t i v e t y p e s r e f l e c t i n g , as Desmond M c C a r t h y d e s c r i b e s them, " t h e C h o r u s i n a Greek p l a y more n e a r l y than a n y t h i n g i n E n g l i s h drama s i n c e The K n i g h t of the B u r n i n g P e s t l e , i n as much as they gave v e n t to the gnomic and c r i t i c a l remarks of the o r d i n a r y s p e c t a t o r . " ( C o u r t T h e a t r e 35) The s c e n e was much p r a i s e d i n i t s own day f o r i t s n a t u r a l i s t i c e f f e c t , ensemble a c t i n g , and a u t h e n t i c p l a t f o r m r h e t o r i c . I t was "an a d m i r a b l y managed ' l i v i n g p i c t u r e ' w i t h as r e a l i s t i c a crowd as we have e v e r seen manoeuvred on the s t a g e " a c c o r d i n g t o The  Times (10 A p r i l 1907 5 ) ; "The g e n e r a l p u b l i c w i l l a d m i r e most the e x t r a o r d i n a r y and r e a l i s t i c i m i t a t i o n o f a m e e t i n g i n T r a f a l g a r S q u a r e " wrote the E r a (14 A p r i l 1907 1 3 ) . The D a i l y G r a p h i c r e p o r t e d i t to be "a t r i u m p h o f s t a g e management" (10 A p r i l 1907 1 ) . A c c o r d i n g to t h e c r i t i c f o r t h e C l a r i o n : T h e r e n e v e r was a n y t h i n g l i k e i t . Here, on a s t a g e l i t t l e b i g g e r than a s u b u r b a n c o n c e r t h a l l p l a t f o r m we have a r e p r e s e n t a t i o n o f a mass m e e t i n g i n T r a f a l g a r S q u a r e ; [ a p p a r e n t l y t h e r e were f o r t y - e i g h t a c t o r s on s t a g e ] and, though the whole of an a c t i s d e v o t e d to t h e s p e e c h e s of f o u r a g i t a t o r s and t h e i n t e r r u p t i o n s of the crowd, the outcome i s an i l l u s i o n of t u m u l t u o u s e x c i t e m e n t , and a scene more compact of l a u g h s and d r a m a t i c t h r i l l s than any o r t h o d o x t h e a t r e i n London can now show. (19 A p r i l 1907 3) The I l l u s t r a t e d London News a s s e r t e d t h a t i t s " v e r i t a b l e c l a s h of s e x - e m o t i o n s and i n t e l l e c t u a l a r guments, makes b e t t e r drama than we have had i n s c o r e s o f p r o b l e m - p l a y s " (27 A p r i l 1907 6 2 2 ) . And a c c o r d i n g to Max Beerbohm, i f the sc e n e c o u l d be c r i t i c i z e d a t a l l , i t was bec a u s e "Mr. G r a n v i l l e B a r k e r has so d r i l l e d t he crowd t h a t i t s r e a l i t y i s o v e r w h e l m i n g enough to be a l m o s t i n a r t i s t i c " ( A r o u n d  T h e a t r e s 461) . The f i r s t s p e a k e r on s t a g e i s a w o r k i n g - c l a s s woman " d r e s s e d i n brown s e r g e " ( a p p a r e n t l y m o d e l l e d upon WSPU member Hannah M i t c h e l l ^ ) who a r g u e s the c a s e f o r t h e " h o m e l e s s " and " o v e r w o r k e d " women. The p r e s e n c e of t h i s " p i n c h e d and s a l l o w " f i g u r e on the p l i n t h i s R o b i n s ' acknowledgement t h a t w o r k i n g women, t o o , were f i g h t i n g f o r t h e i r r i g h t s , and t h a t the movement d i d not c o n s i s t s o l e l y , as many t r i e d t o a s s e r t , of t h e w e l l - t o - d o prompted to a c t i o n by a c o n d e s c e n d i n g view of t h e e c o n o m i c a l l y o p p r e s s e d . As t h i s woman makes c l e a r : " P e o p l e 'ave been 7 M i t c h e l l d e s c r i b e s her a p p e a r a n c e a t WSPU m e e t i n g s as a " d i n g y blown s p a r r o w " (142) " v e r y shabby i n my o l d brown costume" ( 1 5 9 ) . She a l s o t e l l s how R o b i n s used "one or two i n c i d e n t s which I t o l d h e r " (163) i n The C o n v e r t ( f i r s t p u b l i s h e d by Heinemann i n 1907), t h e n o v e l R o b i n s d e v e l o p e d f r o m t h e p l a y . 44 s a v i n ' t h i s i s a m i d d l e - c l a s s woman's movement. I t ' s a l i b e l . I'm a w o r k i n ' woman m y s e l f . . . " ( 6 1 ) . ( I t i s worth n o t i n g , however, t h a t t h i s i s the o n l y s p e a k e r not named i n the p l a y . M i g h t t h i s not i n i t s e l f be c o n s t r u e d as a s p e c i f i c i n s t a n c e o f m i d d l e - c l a s s i n s e n s i t i v i t y on the p a r t of R o b i n s ? ) The "Working Woman," as she ' s known, v a l o r i z e s women's m a t e r n a l and d o m e s t i c r o l e s , a r g u i n g t h a t t h o s e v e r y c a p a c i t i e s need r e p r e s e n t a t i o n i n the l e g i s l a t i v e p r o c e s s e s o o f t he c o u n t r y . _ She i s f o l l o w e d by t h e young, o b v i o u s l y m i d d l e - c l a s s E r n e s t i n e B l u n t , R o b i n s ' f i c t i o n a l r e n d e r i n g of C h r i s t a b e l P a n k h u r s t , who e x p o s e s the r e l a t i o n s h i p between economic h a r d s h i p and s e x u a l e x p l o i t a t i o n : Men say i f we p e r s i s t i n c o m p e t i n g w i t h them f o r the b i g g e r p r i z e s , t h e y ' r e d r e a d f u l l y a f r a i d we'd l o s e the b e a u t i f u l p r o t e c t i n g c h i v a l r y t h a t - Yes, I don't wonder you l a u g h . We l a u g h . ( B e n d i n g f o r w a r d w i t h l i t e y e s . ) But 8 H o l t o n c h a r a c t e r i z e s t h i s s e e m i n g l y c o n s e r v a t i v e argument - "A f e m i n i s m t h a t presumes a d i s t i n c t f e m a l e n a t u r e and t h e b i o l o g i c a l d e t e r m i n a t i o n o f women's s o c i a l f u n c t i o n s would a p p e a r to be f u n d a m e n t a l l y c o n s e r v a t i v e " (17) - as i n f a c t o f f e r i n g a " q u i t e r a d i c a l c h a l l e n g e to r e s t r i c t i v e i d e o l o g i e s c o n c e r n i n g women" (18) d u r i n g the p e r i o d . A c c o r d i n g to H o l t o n , "... s u f f r a g i s t s d i d not seek m e r e l y an e n t r y to a m a l e - d e f i n e d s p h e r e , but the o p p o r t u n i t y to r e d e f i n e t h a t s p h e r e . They r e j e c t e d the c h a r a c t e r i z a t i o n of p o l i t i c a l l i f e i n terms of m a s c u l i n e q u a l i t i e s , and so u g h t to r e d e f i n e the s t a t e by a s s e r t i n g f o r i t a n u r t u r a n t r o l e . B r i t i s h s u f f r a g i s t s aimed to r e f o r m t h e i r s o c i e t y by d o m e s t i c a t i n g p u b l i c l i f e . The most s t r i k i n g a s p e c t of B r i t i s h s u f f r a g i s m , t h e n , i s t h a t i t d i d not p r e s e n t f e m i n i s t g o a l s i n terms of e q u i v a l e n c e w i t h men but i n terms of an a u t o n o m o u s l y c r e a t e d s y s t e m o f v a l u e s d e r i v e d from women's p a r t i c u l a r e x p e r i e n c e " ( 1 8 ) . t h e women I f o u n d a t the F e r r y T i n Works w o r k i n g f o r f i v e s h i l l i n g s a week - I d i d n ' t see them l a u g h i n g . The b e a u t i f u l c h i v a l r y of the e m p l o y e r s of women d o e s n ' t p r e v e n t them from p a y i n g women t e n p e n c e a day f o r s o r t i n g c o a l and l o a d i n g and u n l o a d i n g c a r t s - d o e s n ' t p r e v e n t them from f o r c i n g women to e a r n b r e a d i n worse ways s t i l l . So we won't t a l k about c h i v a l r y . I t ' s b e i n g o v e r -s a r c a s t i c . W e ' l l j u s t l e t t h i s poor g h o s t of c h i v a l r y go - i n exchange f o r a l i t t l e p l a i n o j u s t i c e . (65) B l u n t p r e c e d e s Mr. P i l c h e r (Mr. Walker i n the o r i g i n a l p r o d u c t i o n ^ ) a L a b o u r p a r t y spokesman who t a k e s the o p p o r t u n i t y w h i l e s p e a k i n g f o r women's e n f r a n c h i s e m e n t to la m b a s t e the L i b e r a l s . He i s f o l l o w e d by the o b v i o u s l y monied L e v e r i n g who e n d u r e s the t a u n t s and s n e e r s of 9 C i c e l y H a m i l t o n a l s o t a k e s the o p p o r t u n i t y i n M a r r i a g e as  a T r a d e (1909) to a t t a c k the " v a g u e l y n e b u l o u s i d e a of c h i v a l r y . " She d e f i n e s i t not as a form "... o f r e s p e c t f o r an e q u a l but of c o n d e s c e n s i o n to an i n f e r i o r ; a c o n d e s c e n s i o n which e x p r e s s e s i t s e l f i n c e r t a i n r u l e s of b e h a v i o u r where n o n - e s s e n t i a l s a r e i n v o l v e d . In v e r y few r e a l l y e s s e n t i a l m a t t e r s between man and woman i s the c h i v a l r i c p r i n c i p l e a l l o w e d to get so much as a h e a r i n g ; i n p r a c t i c a l l y a l l s u c h m a t t e r s i t i s ... an u n d e r s t o o d t h i n g t h a t woman g e t s the wo r s t of the b a r g a i n , does the u n p l e a s a n t work i n the common d i v i s i o n of l a b o u r , and, when blame i s i n q u e s t i o n , s i t s down under the l i o n ' s s h a r e of i t . In r e t u r n f o r t h i s a t t i t u d e on her p a r t ... man u n d e r t a k e s to r e g u l a t e h i s c o n d u c t t o w a r d s her by c e r t a i n p a r t i c u l a r forms of outward d e f e r e n c e " ( 8 0 - 8 1 ) . 10 P o s s i b l y the name was changed to a v o i d u n f a v o u r a b l e a s s o c i a t i o n s w i t h the b r u t a l working-man, B i l l W a l k e r , from Shaw's M a j o r B a r b a r a ( 1 9 0 5 ) . 46 s p e c t a t o r s i n o r d e r to e x p l a i n , i n her f i r s t p u b l i c speech,'''''' her view of women's and c h i l d r e n ' s a t t e m p t s to s e c u r e "a l i t t l e j u s t i c e " w i t h i n t h a t b a s t i o n o f m a s c u l i n e power, the c o u r t of law. As a s p e c i f i c i n d i c t m e n t o f the m a l e - d o m i n a t e d j u d i c i a l p r o c e s s , L e v e r i n g r e c o u n t s th e s t o r y of "a l i t t l e w o r k i n g g i r l - an orphan of e i g h t e e n " c o n v i c t e d 1 2 of the murder of her c h i l d . She had c r a w l e d w i t h th e dead body of her new born c h i l d t o her m a s t e r ' s back d o o r , and l e f t the baby t h e r e . ... Her m a s t e r - a m a r r i e d man -had of c o u r s e r e p o r t e d t h e ' f i n d ' a t h i s back door to the p o l i c e and he had been summoned to g i v e e v i d e n c e . The g i r l c r i e d out to him i n the open c o u r t , 'You a r e the f a t h e r ! ' He c o u l d n ' t deny i t . The C o r o n e r a t t h e j u r y ' s r e q u e s t c e n s u r e d the man, and r e g r e t t e d t h a t the law d i d n ' t make him r e s p o n s i b l e . But he went s c o t -f r e e . (71) 11 T h i s was a l s o the s u b j e c t o f E l i z a b e t h Robins;'3 own f i r s t s u f f r a g e s p e e c h . In the autumn o f 1906 she t o l d an a u d i e n c e a t T u n b r i d g e W e l l s " o f how she had come s t r a i g h t f r o m the p o l i c e c o u r t to g i v e the c o n f e r e n c e an e y e - w i t n e s s a c c o u n t o f the women whose a c t i o n s had been g r o s s l y t r a v e s t i e d i n most of the p a p e r s " ( S h a r p 1 3 0 ) . 12 I n f a n t i c i d e was t h e s u b j e c t of E l i z a b e t h R o b i n s ' o t h e r p l a y , A l a n ' s W i f e , w r i t t e n i n c o l l a b o r a t i o n w i t h Lady F l o r e n c e B e l l and s t a g e d by J . T . G r e i n ' s I n d e p e n d e n t T h e a t r e S o c i e t y i n 1893. The p l a y i s a s y m p a t h e t i c p o r t r a y a l of a young widow who k i l l s her deformed i n f a n t and i s hanged a f t e r r e f u s i n g t o r e p e n t or p l e a d i n s a n i t y . The g i r l , on t h e o t h e r hand, was " a r r e s t e d by a man, b r o u g h t b e f o r e a man j u d g e , t r i e d by a j u r y of men, condemned by men, [and] t a k e n t o p r i s o n by a man" ( 7 2 ) . Where, L e v e r i n g , demands, was t h i s woman's t r i a l by her p e e r s ? In f a c t , j u s t s uch an i s s u e was t o be t a k e n up by the Women's Freedom League (a s p l i n t e r group of t h e WSPU) i n the f a l l o f 1907 when i t i n i t i a t e d a number p r o t e s t s i n the P o l i c e C o u r t s : When a woman was b r o u g h t b e f o r e the M a g i s t r a t e , a p r o t e s t o r would s t a n d and make a s e t s t a t e m e n t . One p r e s e n t e d a t G r e e n w i c h i n November 1907 was as f o l l o w s : 'Your W o r s h i p , b e f o r e t h i s c a s e p r o c e e d s f u r t h e r I must r i s e to p r o t e s t a g a i n s t the a d m i n i s t r a t i o n by men o n l y of laws made by men o n l y , and e n f o r c e d by men upon women and c h i l d r e n . As l o n g as women a r e d e n i e d t h e e l e m e n t a r y r i g h t s of c i t i z e n s h i p , we p r o t e s t t h a t t h i s i s t r i a l by f o r c e , and c o n s t i t u t e s a v e r y g r a v e i n j u s t i c e . ' (Women's F r a n c h i s e 28 November 1907 253, q u o t e d i n The Non- V i o l e n t M i l i t a n t 301) In the c o u r s e of her s p e e c h L e v e r i n g happens to n o t i c e S t o n o r , who had a p p e a r e d on s t a g e w i t h Jean Dumbarton d u r i n g B l u n t ' s a d d r e s s . As she l o o k s upon him i n t h e crowd, the p r i v a t e e f f e c t i v e l y i n t r u d e s upon the p u b l i c , p u s h i n g L e v e r i n g t o a more e m p h a t i c c l o s i n g s t a t e m e n t : I would say i n c o n c l u s i o n to t h e women h e r e , 48 i t ' s n o t enough t o be s o r r y f o r t h e s e u n f o r t u n a t e s i s t e r s . We must g e t t h e c o n d i t i o n s of l i f e made f a i r e r . We women must o r g a n i z e . We must l e a r n t o work t o g e t h e r . We have a l l ( r i c h and p o o r , happy and unhappy) worked so l o n g and so e x c l u s i v e l y f o r men, we h a r d l y know how t o work f o r one a n o t h e r . But we must l e a r n . ... I don't mean to say i t wo u l d n ' t be b e t t e r i f men and women d i d t h i s work t o g e t h e r - s h o u l d e r to s h o u l d e r . But the mass of men won't have i t s o . I o n l y hope t h e y ' l l r e a l i s e i n time the good t h e y ' v e r e n o u n c e d and the s p i r i t t h e y ' v e a r o u s e d . F o r I know as w e l l as any man c o u l d t e l l me, i t would be a bad day f o r E n g l a n d i f a l l women f e l t a b out a l l men as I do. (72-73) T h r o u g h s t a g e c o n t r i v a n c e , R o b i n s i s a b l e to make e x p l i c i t the modern f e m i n i s t s l o g a n , "The p e r s o n a l i s p o l i t i c a l . " I t s r a m i f i c a t i o n s f o r t h e c h a r a c t e r s of V o t e s f o r Women a r e e x p l o r e d i n the p l a y ' s t h i r d a c t . A c t I I I i s c o n s t r u c t e d i n a s e r i e s o f d u o l o g u e s r e m i n i s c e n t of I b s e n . I n d e e d , I b s e n must have been on the minds of many, as V i c t o r i a n London's l e a d i n g c r e a t o r of I b s e n r e - d i s t i l s from a woman's p o i n t of view the q u i n t e s s e n c e of I b s e n i s m . A g a i n , R o b i n s i s i n no h u r r y t o get on w i t h the s t o r y ; i n f a c t the p l a y ' s " f o r m l e s s n e s s " ( E r a 13 A p r i l 1907 13), a w e l l - i d e n t i f i e d f e a t u r e o f G r a n v i l l e B a r k e r ' s w r i t i n g as w e l l , might be c o n s i d e r e d by some c o n t e m p o r a r y f e m i n i s t s as s p e c i f i c e v i d e n c e o f the sex of i t s a u t h o r . S u e - E l l e n Case i n Fe m i n i s m and T h e a t r e r e f e r s to G i l l i a n Hanna of the M o n s t r o u s Regiment who c o n s i d e r s " l i n e a r modes as p e c u l i a r to male e x p e r i e n c e , and i n s i s t s t h a t her f e m i n i s t t r o u p e hopes to r e f u t e them." A c c o r d i n g to Hanna a woman's " l i f e and e x p e r i e n c e i s [ s i c ] b r o k e n - b a c k e d " and " f r a g m e n t e d " ( 1 2 3 ) , an apt enough d e s c r i p t i o n of the 13 d i s r u p t e d s t r u c t u r e of V o t e s f o r Women. A c c o r d i n g l y , a l t h o u g h J e a n s e p a r a t e d from S t o n o r a t the end of A c t I I i n o r d e r to f i n d L e v e r i n g and b e g i n t o work f o r h e r , the f i r s t movement of A c t I I I i s c o n c e r n e d w i t h S t o n o r ' s e l e c t i o n e e r i n g t a c t i c s ; h i s c o n s t i t u e n c y i s i n t r o u b l e and he needs to m a n u f a c t u r e some " p o l i t i c a l d y n a m i t e " i f he wants to e n s u r e r e - e l e c t i o n . He d e c i d e s f o r p r a g m a t i c as w e l l as p e r s o n a l r e a s o n s ( i t w i l l p l e a s e J e a n ) to s u p p o r t " V o t e s f o r Women," but b e f o r e he has a chance to make c l e a r h i s p o l i t i c a l " c o n v e r s i o n , " p e r s o n a l m a t t e r s i n t e r v e n e . 13 In "The Eyes of H e r o d , " J o e l H. K a p l a n p o i n t s o ut t h a t Hanna has an u n l i k e l y a l l y i n O s c a r W i l d e ' s L o r d G o r i n g who, i n t h e l a s t a c t of An I d e a l Husband, d i s t i n g u i s h e s between the l i v e s of men wh i c h , " p r o g r e s s . . . upon l i n e s of i n t e l l e c t " and t h a t of a woman which " r e v o l v e s i n c u r v e s of e m o t i o n . " T h i s view was a t t a c k e d i n a V o t e s f o r Women r e v i e w of t he p l a y ' s 1914 r e v i v a l : "The f a t u o u s n e s s o f s u c h a summing-up of the l i v e s of t h e two s e x e s i s p a i n f u l l y o b v i o u s . The p i t y of i t i s t h a t the t h o u g h t l e s s and i r r e f 1 e c t i v e , men as w e l l as women, a c c e p t t h e s e f a l s e s t a t e m e n t s as an ep i t o m e of the d i f f e r e n c e s between the s e x e s , and not as the o p i n i o n s of two p e r s o n s who b o t h r e q u i r e a f u l l e r knowledge of t h e f a c t s of l i f e and a c o u r s e i n l o g i c to improve t h e i r r e a s o n i n g f a c u l t y " (3 Jan 1914 549) . H a v i n g p i e c e d t o g e t h e r the h i s t o r y of S t o n o r and L e v e r i n g , Jean i n s i s t s t h a t he make amends i n a c o n v e n t i o n a l way: t h r o u g h an o f f e r of m a r r i a g e . S t o n o r i s c o n v i n c e d t h a t L e v e r i n g has " b e w i t c h e d " J e a n , ano the r t r a d i t i o n a l e x p l a n a t i o n f o r o t h e r w i s e i n e x p l i c a b l e female b e h a v i o u r , but he ag rees a t J e a n ' s i n s i s t e n c e to make L e v e r i n g an o f f e r . When S t o n o r l a t e r a ccuse s L e v e r i n g of b e i n g "mad" she r e sponds w i t h a f e m i n i s t c r i t i q u e of such l a b e l s : " ' M a d . ' ' U n s e x e d . ' These a re the words of t o d a y . In the M i d d l e Ages men c r i e d out ' W i t c h ! ' and bu rn t her - the woman who s e r v e d no man's bed or b o a r d " ( 8 5 ) .14 The a c t p roceeds i n a s e r i e s o f d i s c u s s i o n s w h i c h e x p l o r e the n a t u r e of men and women's r e l a t i o n s h i p s , the h o l d of the pas t on the p r e s e n t , and the c o n n e c t i o n between the p e r s o n a l and the p o l i t i c a l . In a f r a n k c o n v e r s a t i o n between L e v e r i n g and Lady John wh ich t a k e s p l a c e when " t h e r e are no men l i s t e n i n g " the economic b a s i s of m a r r i a g e i s acknowledged ( " the t h i n g ' s l a r g e l y a q u e s t i o n of e c o n o m i c s " ) and the " o l d p r e t e n c e . . . t h a t to marry a t a l l c o s t s i s eve ry woman's d e a r e s t a m b i t i o n " i s j e t t i s o n e d . As f o r her pas t s u f f e r i n g s , L e v e r i n g has come to see them as p a r t of a l a r g e r p a t t e r n of female o p p r e s s i o n : 14 The f i g u r e of the w i t c h i s c e l e b r a t e d i n the c a r t o o n on the f r o n t page of the 12 A p r i l 1912 e d i t i o n of the WSPU's V o t e s f o r Women. C h r i s t a b e l P a n k h u r s t , then i n P a r i s h i d i n g from the p o l i c e , i s p i c t u r e d a s t r i d e a b r o o m - s t i c k d r o p p i n g messages down to WSPU h e a d q u a r t e r s at C lemen t s I n n . For a n o t h e r Edward i an f e m i n i s t d i s c u s s i o n of the w i t c h , see H a m i l t o n ' s M a r r i a g e as a Trade 88 . 51 G e o f f r e y S t o n o r ? For me he's s i m p l y one o f the f a r back l i n k s i n a c h a i n of e v i d e n c e . I t ' s c e r t a i n I t h i n k a hundred t i m e s o f o t h e r women's p r e s e n t u n h a p p i n e s s , t o once t h a t I remember t h a t o l d u n h a p p i n e s s of mine t h a t ' s p a s t . I t h i n k of t h e n a i l and c h a i n makers of C r a d l e y H e a t h . The sweated g i r l s of the s l u m s . I t h i n k of t h e army of i l l - u s e d women whose v e r y e x i s t e n c e I mustn't m e n t i o n -. (80) In an i r o n i c t w i s t , L e v e r i n g p r o p o s e s to t u r n the d o c t r i n e of " i n d i r e c t i n f l u e n c e " upon i t s p r o p o n e n t s : to "use [ J e a n ' s ] . . . h o l d o v e r G e o f f r e y S t o n o r to make him h e l p u s ! " ( 8 0 ) . As su c h t h i s s c e n e s t a n d s i n s t a r k c o n t r a s t to o t h e r ' f o r c e d p r o p o s a l ' e p i s o d e s of the p e r i o d . In p l a y s l i k e W i l d e ' s Woman of No I m p o r t a n c e ( 1 8 9 3 ) , Hermann Sudermann's Magda (1896) and S t a n l e y Houghton's H i n d l e Wakes (1912) s e d u c e r s a r e a l s o c o m p e l l e d t o o f f e r m a r r i a g e to the women they have compromised, and a r e l i k e w i s e shunned. But i n each o f t h e s e i n s t a n c e s the p l a y w r i g h t ' s c e n t r a l c o n c e r n i s w i t h a g e n e r a t i o n / v a l u e gap t h a t f o c u s s e s a t t e n t i o n upon the r e l a t i o n s between p a r e n t s and c h i l d r e n . R o b i n s ' i n t e r e s t , on the o t h e r hand, l i e s i n the p r o c e s s by which L e v e r i n g t r a n s f o r m s a p e r s o n a l e x p e r i e n c e i n t o a p u b l i c and p o l i t i c a l a c t . When S t o n o r e n t e r s t o o f f e r "amends" to L e v e r i n g , t h e y engage i n a h e a t e d c l a s h o v e r i n t e r p r e t a t i o n s o f the p a s t . And a l t h o u g h the c o n s e r v a t i v e E r a c o n s i d e r e d t h a t S t o n o r ' s p a r t "was c o m p a r a t i v e l y s u b o r d i n a t e to the f e m a l e i n t e r e s t ... [ a s ] M i s s R o b i n s has t a k e n c a r e to g i v e the women a l l the b e s t p a r t s i n the p i e c e " one f e m a l e r e v i e w e r f e l t t h a t R o b i n s ' " a t t i t u d e [was] a s t r i c t l y i m p e r s o n a l one i n the l a s t s c e n e between V i d a L e v e r i n g and G e o f f r e y S t o n o r , where the p o i n t of view of b o t h i s put w i t h a l m o s t p o i g n a n t c l e a r n e s s " ( V o t e s f o r Women 23 A p r i l 1909 5 8 2 ) . A c c o r d i n g to S t o n o r , L e v e r i n g d e s e r t e d him a f t e r t h e a b o r t i o n , making no a t t e m p t to renew c o n t a c t even a f t e r h i s f a t h e r d i e d l e s s than a y e a r l a t e r . From S t o n o r ' s p o i n t of view h i s f a t h e r had been the o n l y r e a l " b a r r i e r " to t h e i r f u t u r e m a r r i a g e , and an i l l e g i t i m a t e c h i l d would have s e r i o u s l y c o m p l i c a t e d m a t t e r s : " i f the c h i l d had l i v e d i t wo u l d n ' t have been p o s s i b l e to g e t my f a t h e r to - to o v e r l o o k i t " ( 7 6 ) . S t o n o r , w i t h an o b v i o u s eye on h i s p a t r i m o n y , o v e r t l y e n d o r s e s the e x i s t i n g o r d e r . From L e v e r i n g ' s p o s i t i o n , however, the " s a c r i f i c e " o f the c h i l d had the e f f e c t of r e a l i g n i n g h er e m o t i o n a l l o y a l t i e s : "happy mothers t e a c h t h e i r c h i l d r e n . Mine had t o t e a c h me. ... - t e a c h me t h a t a woman may do a t h i n g f o r l o v e ' s sake t h a t s h a l l k i l l l o v e " ( 8 4 ) . "The g h o s t o f a c h i l d t h a t had ne v e r seen the l i g h t , the f r a i l t h i n g you meant to sweep a s i d e and f o r g e t - have swept a s i d e and f o r g o t t e n - you d i d n ' t know i t was s t r o n g enough to push you out of my l i f e " ( 8 4 ) . Succumbing under a c o m b i n a t i o n of p r e s s u r e from S t o n o r and f e a r of h i s f a t h e r -53 "how the t h o u g h t o f t h a t a l l - p o w e r f u l p e r s o n a g e used to t e r r o r i s e me!" (83) - L e v e r i n g a g r e e d to an a b o r t i o n . Her s u b s e q u e n t s u f f e r i n g stemmed d i r e c t l y from her f a i l u r e to r e s i s t t h a t male i m p e r a t i v e . She p r o v e d p o w e r l e s s even o v e r the r e p r o d u c t i v e p r o c e s s , w h i c h c o n v e n t i o n a l o r t h o d o x y would have to be a " n a t u r a l " p a r t of women's e x p e r i e n c e . I would a r g u e t h a t the p o r t r a y a l of t h i s s i t u a t i o n i s a s p e c i f i c example of women's w r i t i n g and i n a d d i t i o n , a r e d r a f t i n g of the c o n c l u s i o n of A D o l l ' s House from a woman's p o i n t of view. F o r E l i z a b e t h H a r d w i c k , Nora's d e c i s i o n to l e a v e her c h i l d r e n "... i s r a t h e r c a s u a l and ... d r o p s a s t r a i n on our a d m i r a t i o n of N o r a . I b s e n has put t h e l e a v i n g of her c h i l d r e n on the same moral and e m o t i o n a l l e v e l as t h e l e a v i n g of her husband and we c a n n o t i n our h e a r t s a s s e n t to t h a t . I t i s not o n l y the l e a v i n g but the way the p l a y does not have time f o r s u f f e r i n g , f o r changes of h e a r t . I b s e n has been too much of a man i n the end. He has ta k e n the man's p r a c t i c e , i f not h i s s t a t e d b e l i e f , t h a t where s e l f -r e a l i s a t i o n i s c o n c e r n e d , c h i l d r e n s h a l l n ot be an impedi m e n t " ( 4 6 ) . J u l i e t M i t c h e l l t a k e s e x c e p t i o n to t h i s i n t e r p r e t a t i o n , a r g u i n g t h a t H a r d w i c k " . . . i n h er h e a r t of h e a r t s would s t o p Nora l e a v i n g . I would a r g u e t h a t i t i s not a q u e s t i o n o f I b s e n ' s m a s c u l i n e s e n s i b i l i t y p r e d o m i n a t i n g a t the end, i t i s a q u e s t i o n of the meaning of motherhood i n a w o r l d where women a r e u n e q u a l . Women do not have economic and hence s o c i a l and p e r s o n a l i n d e p e n d e n c e ; t h e y a r e j u d g e d 54 by a p a t r i a r c h a l law" ( 1 2 4 ) . M i t c h e l l seems t o be d e l i b e r a t e l y m i s s i n g the p o i n t ; i t i s not t h a t H a r d w i c k would keep Nora i n her d o l l ' s house, o n l y t h a t she would c h a l l e n g e Nora's p a s s i v e a c q u i e s c e n c e t o T o r v a l d ' s easy e q u a t i n g of her duty t o husband and c h i l d r e n . The p o i n t i s g i v e n d r a m a t i c s i g n i f i c a n c e i n V o t e s f o r Women; R o b i n s makes e x p l i c i t L e v e r i n g ' s awareness of a r e s p o n s i b i l i t y t o c h i l d r e n t h a t d i f f e r s from and o v e r - r i d e s o t h e r o b l i g a t i o n s and a t t a c h m e n t s , i n c l u d i n g m a r i t a l t i e s ; ^ i n f a c t L e v e r i n g goes so f a r as t o a d v i s e S t o n o r a t t h e p l a y ' s end t h a t " J e a n ' s a r d e n t dreams needn't f r i g h t e n you, i f she has a c h i l d . T h a t - from the b e g i n n i n g , i t was not the s t r o n g arm - i t was t h e weakest - the l i t t l e , l i t t l e arms t h a t subdued the f i e r c e s t of us" ( 8 7 ) . I t i s bec a u s e she i s c h i l d l e s s and w i l l r e m a i n so ( " f o r me t h e r e was to be o n l y one") t h a t L e v e r i n g has "no e x c u s e f o r s t a n d i n g a l o o f from the 15 I s h o u l d p o i n t o u t , however, t h a t C i c e l y H a m i l t o n q u o t e s Nora a l m o s t v e r b a t i m i n a d e b a t e w i t h G.K. C h e s t e r t o n i n 1911, a r g u i n g t h a t " B e f o r e your duty to your c h i l d r e n , or your duty to your husband comes your duty to y o u r s e l f " (The  Vote 3 15 A p r i l 1911 295, q u o t e d i n L e w i s ' s i n t r o d u c t i o n to M a r r i a g e as a T r a d e 5 ) . H a m i l t o n e l a b o r a t e s upon t h i s i s s u e i n M a r r i a g e as a T r a d e , i n s i s t i n g t h a t "Male humanity has wobbled between two c o n v i c t i o n s - the one, t h a t ... [woman] e x i s t s f o r the e n t i r e b e n e f i t of c o n t e m p o r a r y mankind; the o t h e r , t h a t she e x i s t s f o r the e n t i r e b e n e f i t of the next g e n e r a t i o n . The l a t t e r i s a t p r e s e n t the f a v o u r i t e . One c o n s i d e r a t i o n o n l y male humanity has f i r m l y r e f u s e d to e n t e r t a i n - t h a t she e x i s t s i n any de g r e e w h a t s o e v e r f o r the b e n e f i t of h e r s e l f " ( 2 4 - 5 ) . Of c o u r s e i t i s c l e a r f r o m the t e x t as a whole t h a t H a m i l t o n i s a r g u i n g the ca s e f o r women who have not y e t cho s e n to marry or bear c h i l d r e n ; once a woman a c t u a l l y has c h i l d r e n H a m i l t o n too seemed to a c c e p t the m o t h e r ' s o v e r - r i d i n g r e s p o n s i b i l i t y f o r t h e i r c a r e . 55 f i g h t . " She f i n d s t h a t she can c h a n n e l her p r i v a t e p a i n i n t o work f o r the women's c a u s e : One woman's mishap? - what i s t h a t ? A t h i n g as t r i v i a l t o t h e g r e a t w o r l d as i t ' s s o r d i d i n most e y e s . But the time has come when a woman may l o o k about h e r , and s a y , "What g e n e r a l s i g n i f i c a n c e has my s e c r e t p a i n ? Does i t ' j o i n on' to a n y t h i n g ? And I f i n d i t does. I'm no l o n g e r m e r e l y a woman who has s t u m b l e d on the way. I'm one ... who has got up b r u i s e d and b l e e d i n g , wiped the d u s t from her hands and the t e a r s f r o m her f a c e , and s a i d not m e r e l y , " H e r e ' s one l u c k l e s s woman! but her e i s a s t o n e of s t u m b l i n g to many. L e t ' s see i f i t c a n ' t be moved out of o t h e r women's way." And she c a l l s p e o p l e to come and h e l p . (87) L i k e A D o l l ' s House, V o t e s f o r Women ends w i t h a woman's e x i t . U n l i k e Nora, however, L e v e r i n g knows e x a c t l y where she i s g o i n g . R e j e c t i n g m a r r i a g e and motherhood, she c h o o s e s i n s t e a d a l i f e of f e m a l e a l l i a n c e and p u b l i c s e r v i c e to the f e m i n i s t c a u s e . S t o n o r r e m a i n s b e h i n d , a l o n e i n a d e s e r t e d d rawing-room, a w a i t i n g m a r r i a g e to y e t a n o t h e r " a r d e n t " woman. 16 Rosen has p o i n t e d out t h a t an o v e r w h e l m i n g m a j o r i t y of f u l l - t i m e WSPU o r g a n i z e r s were u n m a r r i e d , and t h a t u n m a r r i e d s u b s c r i b e r s to the o r g a n i z a t i o n i n c r e a s e d from 45 p e r c e n t i n the y e a r s 1906-7 to 63 p e r c e n t i n the y e a r s 1913-14 ( 2 1 0 ) . I f t h e c l o s e o f V o t e s f o r Women can be i n t e r p r e t e d i n p a r t a t l e a s t as a r e d r a f t i n g of t h a t o f A D o l l ' s House from a woman's p e r s p e c t i v e , G r a n v i l l e B a r k e r ' s Waste s h o u l d be viewed as a c o n s i d e r a t i o n of a s p e c t s o f V o t e s f o r Women from a male p e r s p e c t i v e . As a l r e a d y m e n t i o n e d , Waste c o n c e r n s t h e e f f e c t of an a b o r t i o n upon t h e a m b i t i o u s p o l i t i c i a n who f a t h e r e d t h e c h i l d . .Although B a r k e r began t o compose t h e p l a y i n . A p r i l 1906 ( a l m o s t a y e a r b e f o r e t h e s t a g i n g of V o t e s f o r Women) i t was n o t r e a d y f o r p e r f o r m a n c e u n t i l November 1907, d u r i n g w h i c h p e r i o d he seems t o have been i n f l u e n c e d by R o b i n s ' p l a y . In a l e t t e r d a t e d 20 March 1907 B a r k e r had s u g g e s t e d a method of r e s h a p i n g R o b i n s ' c e n t r a l a c t i o n : S h o u l d [ L e v e r i n g ] n o t warn [ S t o n o r i n Ac t I I I ] t h a t h i s u n c o m p r o m i s i n g a d v o c a c y o f the c a u s e may c o s t him h i s s e a t i n t h e C a b i n e t a t f i r s t , anyway t h a t he runs c o n s i d e r a b l e r i s k . i f he i s g o i n g to make a Government S u f f r a g e B i l l t he c o n d i t i o n of h i s j o i n i n g ? I t h i n k one ought t o see t h a t he i s p r e p a r e d t o s t a k e h i s p o l i t i c a l c a r e e r on t h e q u e s t i o n , and i f we don't f a c e the f a c t t h a t he may go under , we l o s e i n t e r e s t i n him as a human b e i n g . (HRHRC) In Waste B a r k e r e v e n t u a l l y b u i l t t h e k i n d of p l a y he w i s h e d V o t e s f o r Women to 'become. Henry T r e b e l l , h i s p r o t a g o n i s t , i s a p o l i t i c i a n u n w i l l i n g t o compromise on the 57 D i s e s t a b l i s h m e n t B i l l he c o n s i d e r s h i s l i f e ' s work. H i s p u b l i c a m b i t i o n , however, i s t h r e a t e n e d by a b r i e f l i a i s o n w i t h a m a r r i e d woman wh i c h r e s u l t s i n h e r p r e g n a n c y . Here i t i s the woman who s e e k s t h e a b o r t i o n , c o m p e l l e d by a " f e a r o f th e burden of her womanhood" ( 2 1 0 ) . T r e b e l l d e s i r e s t h e c h i l d ' s b i r t h and ec h o e s t h e husband's c r y , " I s the c u r s e o f b a r r e n n e s s t o be n o t h i n g t o a man?" ( 2 1 0 ) . In a nea t r e v e r s a l of V o t e s f o r Women, Waste c o n s i d e r s the i s s u e o f a b o r t i o n from T r e b e l l ' s p o i n t o f view, e x a m i n i n g i t s c o n s e q u e n c e s , b o t h p u b l i c and p r i v a t e , f o r h i s c a r e e r and p e r s o n a l l i f e . I n d e e d , t h e p r e g n a n t Amy O ' C o n n e l l - who i s p r e t t y and c h a r m i n g , " i f by c h a r m i n g you u n d e r s t a n d a woman who c o n v e r t s e v e r y q u a l i t y .she p o s s e s s e s i n t o a means of a t t r a c t i o n , and has no use f o r any o t h e r s " (163) - i s of i n t e r e s t p r i m a r i l y as an a d j u n c t t o T r e b e l l . She i s , i n f a c t , s i l e n c e d f o r t h e se c o n d h a l f of t h e p l a y , d y i n g between A c t s I I and I I I . T r e b e l l s t a n d s i n marked c o n t r a s t to S t o n o r , who i s u n t r o u b l e d by L e v e r i n g ' s a b o r t i o n and e a s i l y f o r g e t s t h e unborn c h i l d i n h i s e f f o r t s to advance h i s p o l i t i c a l f u t u r e . T r e b e l l on t h e o t h e r hand b e l i e v e s t h a t " t h e man b e a r s t h e c h i l d i n h i s s o u l as the woman c a r r i e s i t i n her body" (235) and f i n d s h i s f u t u r e c h i l d ' s d e a t h p o l i t i c a l l y and s p i r i t u a l l y d e v a s t a t i n g . He comes to view h i s l i f e ' s work as " b a r r e n " (234) and when he " t u r n s i n w a r d f o r c o m f o r t ... he f i n d s t h e r e o n l y a s p i r i t w h ich s h o u l d have been b o r n , but i s dead" ( 2 3 5 ) . D e s p i t e her p r i v a t e s u f f e r i n g , L e v e r i n g f i n d s p u r p o s e and a r e a s o n t o l i v e i n a p u b l i c a f f i r m a t i o n o f the woman's c a u s e ; T r e b e l l f i n d s o n l y d e a t h . L i k e Nora he l e a v e s t h e s t a g e w i t h a bang of the d o o r , but u n l i k e I b s e n ' s h e r o i n e , he l e a v e s to commit the s u i c i d e she has come t o r e j e c t as m e l o d r a m a t i c p o s t u r i n g . R o b i n s i n t e n d e d V o t e s f o r Women to be a r a l l y i n g c r y f o r f e m i n i s t s ; t h r o u g h her p r o t a g o n i s t L e v e r i n g she c a l l s t o a l l women (a m a j o r i t y i n h e r m a t i n e e a u d i e n c e s ) t o j o i n i n a common c a u s e . Of c o u r s e i t i s d i f f i c u l t t o know how many a u d i e n c e members were a c t u a l l y c o n v e r t e d to t h e f e m i n i s t movement as a r e s u l t o f v i e w i n g t h e p l a y . I t c e r t a i n l y p r o v e d p o p u l a r though - r e c e i p t s i n c r e a s e d w i t h e v e r y p e r f o r m a n c e and Vedrenne and B a r k e r , who had o r i g i n a l l y c o n t r a c t e d f o r o n l y e i g h t m a t i n e e s , e x t e n d e d t h e p l a y ' s run f o r two more m a t i n e e s and e l e v e n e v e n i n g p e r f o r m a n c e s . ^ In f a c t , t h e p l a y was n e v e r r e a l l y t a k e n out o f t h e C o u r t T h e a t r e ' s r e p e r t o r y . I t s p e r f o r m a n c e s s t o p p e d o n l y when the B a r k e r - V e d r e n n e management p e r m a n e n t l y c e a s e d o p e r a t i o n s i n June 1907. D e s p i t e i t s p o p u l a r i t y w i t h a u d i e n c e s ( C h r i s t a b e l P a n k h u r s t n o t e d t h a t crowds were t u r n e d away each day) a number of r e v i e w e r s e x p r e s s e d r e s e r v a t i o n s o v e r t h e p l a y ' s power t o advance the c a u s e . The E r a c r i t i c assumed t h a t 17 See the V e d r e n n e / R o b i n s c o r r e s p o n d e n c e a t t h e H a r r y Ransom H u m a n i t i e s R e s e a r c h C e n t r e . p e o p l e would r e s p o n d a c c o r d i n g t o t h e i r p r e c o n c e i v e d n o t i o n s , " w i t h e n t h u s i a s m or d i s a p p r o v a l or g r o w l s " as t h e ca s e might be. He added, however, t h a t i f i t "does not have the e f f e c t of . a l t e r i n g o p i n i o n s as t o t h e q u e s t i o n o f f e m a l e s u f f r a g e , i t w i l l , a t any r a t e , show t h e woman's s i d e of the q u e s t i o n i n a f r e s h l i g h t t o most p l a y g o e r s , who a r e n o t , as a r u l e '.strong' i n p h i l a n t h r o p i c f a c t s and f i g u r e s . " O t h e r r e v i e w e r s d o u b t e d t h e wisdom o f R o b i n s d e a l i n g w i t h f e m i n i s t i s s u e s o t h e r t h a n t h e v o t e . The Times c r i t i c , f o r i n s t a n c e , wondered whether i t was w i s e t o c l o u d t h a t q u e s t i o n w i t h s u c h o t h e r m a t t e r s as s e d u c t i o n , a b o r t i o n and i n f a n t i c i d e . But as the p l a y d e m o n s t r a t e s t h e demand f o r e n f r a n c h i s e m e n t r e p r e s e n t e d o n l y one a s p e c t of t h e s t r u g g l e ' f o r f e m a l e e m a n c i p a t i o n . And R o b i n s ' commitment to t h i s w i d e r d e f i n i t i o n of the c a u s e i s made p l a i n i n a l e t t e r r e a d . a l o u d t o a l u n c h e o n m e e t i n g of t h e WSPU: I have d e c i d e d w i t h r e s p e c t to the p l a y V o t e s f o r Women t h a t I w i l l d i v i d e a p e r c e n t a g e o f my r e c e i p t s between t h e o l d e r S u f f r a g e S o c i e t y and the Women's S o c i a l and P o l i t i c a l U n i o n , . t h a t younger s o c i e t y w h i c h has done so much to b r i n g the q u e s t i o n of women's e n f r a n c h i s e m e n t t o the p o s i t i o n of p o l i t i c a l and p u b l i c s i g n i f i c a n c e i t now o c c u p i e s . T h i s may no t . b e a m a t t e r of much moment i n i t s e l f , but i f i t l e a d s o t h e r s t o e x e r c i s e one o f t h e " r i g h t s " , women a l r e a d y p o s s e s s , t h e p l a y a f o r e s a i d may have one s o r t of s u c c e s s , i f no o t h e r . ( D a i l y M i r r o r 23 A p r i l 1907 i n v o l 1 A r n c l i f f e - S e n n e t t P a p e r s ) Of c o u r s e V o t e s f o r Women d i d e n j o y a n o t h e r k i n d of s u c c e s s , b r e a k i n g t h e a t r i c a l g round as i t were f o r o t h e r women p l a y w r i g h t s and a c t o r s b e n t on u s i n g t h e i r t a l e n t s to f u r t h e r the f e m i n i s t c a u s e . C h a p t e r I I S u f f r a g e "'One p l a y i s worth where p r o p a g a n d a Drama: a hundred s p e e c h e s ' i s c o n c e r n e d . " A l i t t l e more t h a n a y e a r a f t e r t h e s u c c e s s f u l s t a g i n g of V o t e s f o r Women, and prompted i n p a r t by i t s example, the Women W r i t e r s ' S u f f r a g e League (WWSL) was form e d . Founded i n June 1908 by C i c e l y H a m i l t o n and B e s s i e H a t t o n , i t i n c l u d e d among i t s c h a r t e r members S a r a h Grand, May S i n c l a i r and O l i v e S c h r e i n e r . I t s f i r s t P r e s i d e n t was E l i z a b e t h R o b i n s . I t s o b j e c t , as s t a t e d i n The S u f f r a g e  A n n u a l and Women's Who's Who of 1913, was " t o o b t a i n the v o t e f o r women on t h e same terms as i t i s or may be g r a n t e d t o men. I t s methods a r e t h o s e p r o p e r to w r i t e r s - t h e use of th e pen" ( 1 3 7 ) . A p p r o p r i a t e l y enough, t h e WWSL p u b l i s h e d a v a r i e t y of s u f f r a g e p l a y s , poems, and pa m p h l e t s w r i t t e n by i t s members. In a d d i t i o n , the o r g a n i z a t i o n h e l d i t s own f u n d - r a i s i n g e v e n t s and p a r t i c i p a t e d i n t h e m a s s i v e p r o c e s s i o n s h e l d t o d i s p l a y t h e b r e a d t h of s u p p o r t f o r t h e s u f f r a g e c a u s e . In t h e June 1908 march o r g a n i z e d by t h e N a t i o n a l U n i o n of Women's S u f f r a g e S o c i e t i e s , t h e W r i t e r s ' S u f f r a g e League ('a v e r y merry • l o t ' ) , a l l w e a r i n g s c a r l e t and w h i t e badges t r a n s f i x e d w i t h q u i l l s , walked b e n e a t h the d r a m a t i c b l a c k and w h i t e f o l d s of t h e banner d e s i g n e d f o r them by Mary Lowndes and worked by Mrs. H e r r i n g h a m o f t h e A r t i s t s ' S u f f r a g e L eague. I t was c a r r i e d i n t u r n by C i c e l y H a m i l t o n , E v e l y n S h a r p , S a r a h Grand, B e a t r i c e H a r r a d e n and E l i z a b e t h R o b i n s . B e h i n d them the b a n n e r s commemorating t h e B r o n t e s , Jane A u s t e n , E l i z a b e t h B a r r e t t B r o w n i n g and J o s e p h i n e B u t l e r were h e l d a l o f t b y . o t h e r members of the c o n t i n g e n t . ( T i c k n e r 84) The WWSL went on to j o i n s u b s e q u e n t p r o c e s s i o n s o r g a n i z e d by the Women's S o c i a l and P o l i t i c a l U n i o n (WSPU) i n June and J u l y 1910, m a r c h i n g once more b e h i n d Lowndes' b l a c k and. w h i t e banner, and ac c o m p a n i e d by b a n n e r e t t e s d i s p l a y i n g t h e names of famous women w r i t e r s ( T i c k n e r 1 1 4 ) . I t a l s o p a r t i c i p a t e d i n t h e June 1911 Women's C o r o n a t i o n P r o c e s s i o n , a c o l l a b o r a t i v e e f f o r t w h i c h j o i n e d the f o r c e s of the WSPU and more t r a d i t i o n a l l a w - a b i d i n g s o c i e t i e s d u r i n g a p e r i o d of c a u t i o u s o p t i m i s m o v e r t h e p o s s i b l e p a s s a g e of. a C o n c i l i a t i o n B i l l w h i c h a t t e m p t e d t o s a t i s f y c o m p e t i n g p o l i t i c a l i n t e r e s t s by o f f e r i n g q u i t e l i m i t e d • e n f r a n c h i s e m e n t . On t h i s , o c c a s i o n t h e WWSL c o n t i n g e n t c a r r i e d a new banner o f J u s t i c e s p e c i a l l y d e s i g n e d by a r t i s t W.H. M a r g e t s o n ( S u f f r a g e A n n u a l 1 3 6 ) . 1908 a l s o w i t n e s s e d t h e f o r m a t i o n of the A c t r e s s e s 1 F r a n c h i s e L e a g u e , a s i s t e r s o c i e t y i n s t r u m e n t a l i n t h e deve l o p m e n t o f f e m i n i s t drama. " S t r i c t l y n e u t r a l i n r e g a r d t o S u f f r a g e t a c t i c s , " ( S u f f r a g e A n n u a l 10) the AFL was open to anyone i n v o l v e d i n t h e t h e a t r i c a l p r o f e s s i o n . Founded by G e r t r u d e E l l i o t t , W i n n i f r e d Mayo, Sime S e r u y a and A d e l i n e Bourne, i t s membership i n c l u d e d E l i z a b e t h R o b i n s , C i c e l y H a m i l t o n , E l l e n T e r r y , E d i t h C r a i g , L i l l a h M c C a r t h y , Lena A s h w e l l , L i l l y L a n g t r y , N i n a B o u c i c a u l t , Decima and Eva Moore, I r e n e and V i o l e t Vanbrugh and May W h i t t y . L i k e the WWSL, the AFL p a r t i c i p a t e d i n m e e t i n g s , d e p u t a t i o n s and p r o c e s s i o n s . In t h e c a s e of t h e C o r o n a t i o n P r o c e s s i o n , g r e a t c a r e was t a k e n to e n s u r e a s t r i k i n g v i s u a l e f f e c t . Members were i n s t r u c t e d t o wear v a r y i n g s hades of w h i t e i f p o s s i b l e , and to f a s t e n a c r o s s t h e i r d r e s s e s s c a r v e s i n the League's c o l o u r s of p i n k and g r e e n . They c a r r i e d p o l e s decked w i t h p i n k and g r e e n s t r e a m e r s and marched b e h i n d a p i n k and gre e n banner d i s p l a y i n g t h e t r a d i t i o n a l masks of comedy and t r a g e d y ( G a r d n e r i n t r o ) . A c c o r d i n g t o i t s mandate, the AFL s o u g h t : (1) To c o n v i n c e members of t h e t h e a t r i c a l p r o f e s s i o n of t h e n e c e s s i t y of e x t e n d i n g t h e F r a n c h i s e t o women. (2) To work f o r women's e n f r a n c h i s e m e n t by e d u c a t i o n a l methods. 1. P r o p a g a n d a M e e t i n g s . 2. S a l e o f L i t e r a t u r e . 3. P r o p a g a n d a P l a y s . 4. L e c t u r e s . (3) To a s s i s t a l l o t h e r L e a g u e s whenever p o s s i b l e . ( S u f f r a g e A n n u a l 11) S p e c i f i c a l l y , t h e AFL r e c o g n i z e d t h a t i t o f f e r e d an o p p o r t u n i t y t o open "a new f i e l d f o r p r o p a g a n d a . " F o l l o w i n g t h e example o f V o t e s f o r Women, i t saw the p o t e n t i a l f o r " i l l u s t r a t [ i n g ] t he s p e e c h e s and pam p h l e t s of the e a r l i e r S u f f r a g e s o c i e t i e s i n d r a m a t i c f o r m " ( S u f f r a g e A n n u a l 1 0 ) . A c c o r d i n g l y , i t opened a p l a y d e p a r t m e n t under the. d i r e c t i o n o f I n e z Bensusan who oversaw the w r i t i n g , c o l l e c t i o n and p u b l i c a t i o n o f s u f f r a g e drama. And w o r k i n g i n c o n j u n c t i o n w i t h the WWSL i t s t a g e d i t s f i r s t f u n d - r a i s i n g m a t i n e e a t the S c a l a T h e a t r e i n November 1909, the e n t e r t a i n m e n t c o n s i s t i n g of mu s i c , p o e t r y r e c i t a t i o n , dance and a number o f s h o r t p l a y s , t h e l a t t e r a l l w r i t t e n by WWSL members.''' In f a c t t h e AFL and t h e WWSL e x p e r i e n c e d a happy m a r r i a g e ; c o n t i n u i n g t o work t o g e t h e r u n t i l the c e s s a t i o n of most s u f f r a g e a g i t a t i o n a f t e r August 1914, t h e y p r e s e n t e d a 1 The p l a y s p e r f o r m e d were The Pot and the K e t t l e ( C i c e l y H a m i l t o n and C h r i s t o p h e r S t . J o h n ) , M a s t e r ( G e r t r u d e M o u i l l o t ) , The O u t c a s t ( B e a t r i c e H a r r a d e n and B e s s i e H a t t o n ) and A Pageant o f Famous Women ( C i c e l y H a m i l t o n and C h r i s t o p h e r S t . John).. number of p l a y s c o n c e r n e d w i t h f e m i n i s t i s s u e s . These i n c l u d e d b u t were n o t l i m i t e d to works d e a l i n g w i t h . t h e v o t e i t s e l f ( t h e term ' s u f f r a g e drama' r e f e r r i n g to the a u s p i c e s under which t h e s e p l a y s were p r o d u c e d , not t h e i r . s p e c i f i c c o n t e n t ) . The s t r u g g l e f o r e n f r a n c h i s e m e n t p r o v i d e d a c o n v e n i e n t m i d d l e - g r o u n d . u p o n which p o l i t i c a l l y committed women of a l l p e r s u a s i o n s c o u l d meet, but i t a l s o e n c o u r a g e d many women t o c h a l l e n g e i n more f a r - r e a c h i n g ways the r e l a t i o n s h i p s between the s e x e s and to i n s i s t upon a woman's rig'ht to d e f i n e h e r s e l f and her p l a c e w i t h i n the e x i s t i n g s o c i a l and c u l t u r a l s t r a t a . As E r n e s t i n e B l u n t s a y s i n Vo te s  f o r Women, "How do t h e y [men] know what's womanly? I t ' s f o r , women t o d e c i d e t h a t " ( 6 4 ) . A c c o r d i n g l y , the a u t h o r s of t h e s e s t a g e p i e c e s , f o l l o w i n g R o b i n s ' l e a d , a t t e m p t e d to r e n e g o t i a t e a v a i l a b l e d r a m a t i c g e n r e s and s t y l e s , r e p l a c i n g c o n v e n t i o n a l " f e m i n i n i t y " w i t h a l t e r n a t i v e v iews of womanhood. The p l a y s a r e f o r the most p a r t s h o r t -c o n s i s t i n g p r i m a r i l y o f monologues, d u o l o g u e s , p a g e a n t s and o n e - a c t c o m e d i e s o r dramas d e s i g n e d f o r p r o d u c t i o n as p a r t o f an e x t e n s i v e a f t e r n o o n or e v e n i n g programme p e r f o r m e d b e f o r e s u p p o r t e r s of t h e c a u s e . As G a r d n e r p o i n t s out i n her i n t r o d u c t i o n t o S k e t c h e s from the. A c t r e s s e s ' F r a n c h i s e  League, t h e s e p l a y s " f u n c t i o n as a f f i r m a t i v e r a t h e r than s u b v e r s i v e or a g i t a t i o n a l p r o p a g a n d a . " T h e i r message was 2 meant to be unambiguous and d i r e c t . T h e r e i s no doubt t h a t the p l a y s w r i t t e n by members of the WWSL and p e r f o r m e d by t h e AFL were c o n s i d e r e d by a l l i n v o l v e d to be o v e r t p r o p a g a n d a and t h i s i n e v i t a b l y r a i s e s the vexed q u e s t i o n of t h e i r r e l a t i o n s h i p t o a r t . We must, however, be wary of what T i c k n e r c a l l s " t h e a r t / p r o p a g a n d a d i v i d e [ w h i c h ] i s i t s e l f a k i n d o f pr o p a g a n d a f o r a r t : i t s e c u r e s the c a t e g o r y of a r t as s o m e t h i n g complex, humane and i d e o l o g i c a l l y p u r e , t h r o u g h t h e o p e r a t i o n of an a l t e r n a t i v e c a t e g o r y of pr o p a g a n d a as t h a t which i s c r u d e , i n s t i t u t i o n a l and p a r t i s a n " ( x i ) . As c u l t u r a l a r t i f a c t s , a r t and propaganda do not e x i s t as s e p a r a t e and u n c o n n e c t e d a r e a s of en d e a v o u r ; a r t l i k e p r o p a g a n d a i s n e c e s s a r i l y formed from p r e - e x i s t i n g c o n v e n t i o n s and t r a d i t i o n s ( t o do o t h e r w i s e i s to e n s u r e u n i n t e l 1 i g i b i 1 i t y ) w h i c h a r e imbedded w i t h i n c e r t a i n i d e o l o g i c a l c o n s t r u c t s ; i t s meaning i s formed a c c o r d i n g t o t h a t s y s t e m , and as s u c h i t i s , l i k e p r o p a g a n d a , i d e o l o g i c a l l y c o n s t r a i n e d . T h i s i s not to say 2 So much so t h a t when Eva Moore p l a y e d a s k e t c h w r i t t e n by her husband c a l l e d Her V o t e c o n c e r n i n g "a ' f l u f f y ' young woman who, a f t e r p e r s u a d i n g e v e r y o n e she meets t h a t i t i s " t h e i r d u t y " to a t t e n d a b i g S u f f r a g e m e e t i n g , does not go h e r s e l f , b e cause her 'young man' has t a k e n t i c k e t s f o r a f a s h i o n a b l e b a l l , " a c o m p l a i n t was r e g i s t e r e d t h a t "Eva Moore p r e f e r r e d K i s s e s to V o t e s . " She was a s k e d e i t h e r not t o do the p l a y a g a i n or to r e s i g n ; she chose to r e s i g n a l t h o u g h she r e j o i n e d the League a t a l a t e r d a t e , " s t i l l r e s e r v i n g t h e r i g h t t o m y s e l f t o p l a y i n any p l a y , w i t h o u t th e a s s u m p t i o n t h a t I was w o r k i n g a n t i - S u f f r a g e p r o p a g a n d a " (Moore 9 5 ) . t h a t a r t and propaganda a r e i n d i s t i n g u i s h a b l e , o n l y t h a t t h e i r d i f f e r e n c e s c a n n o t be r e d u c e d to "a c r u d e d i v i s i o n between the i d e o l o g i c a l l y s a t u r a t e d and the i d e o l o g i c a l l y p u r e " ( T i c k n e r x i ) . T h e r e i s no doubt t h a t s u f f r a g e drama was w r i t t e n - as p a r t of a c o n s c i o u s l y o r g a n i z e d scheme to p r o p a g a t e p o l i t i c a l d o c t r i n e and a d v o c a t e s o c i a l and c u l t u r a l changes which would c o n t r i b u t e to the d i s m a n t l i n g of a sy s t e m based upon p a t r i a r c h a l o p p r e s s i o n . To t h a t e x t e n t i t i s u n a b a s h e d l y f e m i n i s t p r o p a g a n d a , and a n t i c i p a t e s i n some r e m a r k a b l e ways the s e l f - c o n s c i o u s l y "women's t h e a t r e " of the l a t e r t w e n t i e t h c e n t u r y . The most s p e c t a c u l a r t h e a t r i c a l e v e n t s of the S u f f r a g e Movement were the p o l i t i c a l p r o c e s s i o n s which grew i n s i z e and s p l e n d o u r from the f i r s t Mud March of J a n u a r y 1907, o r g a n i z e d by a b r a n c h of the NUWSS and composed of a p p r o x i m a t e l y t h r e e t h o u s a n d women who f o r the f i r s t time 3 The l a t t e r i s a l s o p o l i t i c a l and d i d a c t i c ; i t s t r i v e s to d e m o n s t r a t e to women the r a m i f i c a t i o n s of t h e i r s o c i a l , p o l i t i c a l , c u l t u r a l and economic i n e q u a l i t y as a means of e n c o u r a g i n g them to f i g h t f o r change. And l i k e i t s f o r e r u n n e r , modern f e m i n i s t drama i s p r i m a r i l y c o n c e r n e d w i t h c o n f i r m i n g or r e n d e r i n g e x p l i c i t , v i ews a l r e a d y h e l d by i t s m o s t l y f e m a l e a u d i e n c e . I t too s p e a k s m o s t l y to the c o n v e r t e d . I t does so, a c c o r d i n g t o J a n e t Brown, t h r o u g h f o u r b a s i c p a t t e r n s : sex r o l e r e v e r s a l ; use of h i s t o r i c a l f i g u r e s as r o l e m o d e l s , s a t i r e of sex r o l e s and the d i r e c t p o r t r a y a l o f women's o p p r e s s i o n ( 1 4 0 ) . Such t e c h n i q u e s and s t r a t e g i e s a l s o i n f o r m the work of the p r o p a g a n d i s t p l a y w r i g h t s o f the WWSL and AFL. I t i s an u n f o r t u n a t e i r o n y t h a t t h i s body of w r i t i n g was unknown to the f e m i n i s t a u t h o r s of t h e 1960s who u n w i t t i n g l y a c c e p t e d as " f a c t t h a t [ u n t i l they began to w r i t e ] f e m i n i s t drama s i m p l y d i d not e x i s t " ( N a t a l i e 16) . 68 t o o k t o the s t r e e t s i n o r d e r t o a d v e r t i s e t h e i r r i g h t to e n f r a n c h i s e m e n t , ^ t o the June 1911 Women's C o r o n a t i o n P r o c e s s i o n w h i c h a t t r a c t e d o v e r 40,000 p a r t i c i p a n t s . The l a t t e r , l e d by an e q u e s t r i a n Joan of A r c d r e s s e d i n s i l v e r armour, c o n s i s t e d of h u n d r e d s o f c o n t i n g e n t s i n c l u d i n g ( as me n t i o n e d above) the AFL and the WWSL. Of the many g r o u p s t h a t p a r t i c i p a t e d , t h e P r i s o n e r s ' P ageant was one o f t e n s i n g l e d out f o r comment. I t c o n s i s t e d of " t h a t s t r a n g e p o r t e n t , the body o f women, seven hundred s t r o n g , who have e n d u r e d i m p r i s o n m e n t i n the s t r u g g l e f o r c i t i z e n s h i p " (Way  S t a t i o n s 265) . A s e p a r a t e H i s t o r i c a l Pageant a l s o much p r a i s e d was d e s i g n e d to d e m o n s t r a t e " t h e g r e a t p o l i t i c a l power h e l d by women i n the p a s t h i s t o r y of t h e s e I s l e s , the l a s t v e s t i g e of w h i c h was l o s t w i t h the v o t e i n 1832 when the Reform B i l l was p a s s e d " ( q u o t e d i n T i c k n e r 126). F i g u r e s r e p r e s e n t e d i n c l u d e d t h e Abbess H i l d a , v a r i o u s P e e r e s s e s summoned to P a r l i a m e n t by Edward I I I , Women-Governors, and f r e e women of a s s o r t e d g u i l d s and o r g a n i z a t i o n s (Way  S t a t i o n s 2 6 6 ) . An a s s o c i a t e d Empire P a g e a n t , a l t h o u g h not d i r e c t l y l i n k e d to t h e s u f f r a g e theme, was p r a i s e d by R o b i n s f o r i t s a b i l i t y t o use t h e l a n g u a g e of a l l e g o r i c a l s p e c t a c l e . C e l e b r a t i n g the E d w a r d i a n e r a ' s i m p e r i a l a m b i t i o n s i t f e a t u r e d 4 I t was c a l l e d t h e "Mud Ma r c h " i n acknowledgement of the l e s s t h an i d e a l weather c o n d i t i o n s t h a t p r e v a i l e d . By d e c i d i n g to ap p e a r p u b l i c l y i n the s t r e e t s a t t h i s time t h e s e women i s s u e d an o b v i o u s c h a l l e n g e to c o n v e n t i o n a l d e f i n i t i o n s of a p p r o p r i a t e f e m i n i n e b e h a v i o u r . 69 ...two s e a t e d f i g u r e s r e p r e s e n t [ i n g ] E a s t and West. Over t h e i r heads [was] the E m p e r o r - K i n g ' s ' r o o f - t r e e , and at t h e i r f e e t s y m b o l i c p r e s e n t m e n t s of t h e v a r i o u s d e p e n d e n c i e s and c o l o n i e s . . . . B e f o r e and b e h i n d the c a r , and l i n k i n g a l l t o g e t h e r i n r o s e - c h a i n s , [.were] the b e a r e r s of t h e s t a v e s , which [were] surmounted by emblems of the Kingdom and the E m p i r e . (Way S t a t i o n s 266) The d i s p l a y was commended by one c r i t i c as " f a r s u r p a s s i n g t h e c r u d e s y m b o l i s m of the L o r d Mayor's Show" ( q u o t e d i n T i c k n e r 1 2 6 ) . T i c k n e r d e t e c t s i n s u c h s p e c t a c l e "a l a t e and r a t h e r f e e b l e d i f f u s i o n of the 1 9 t h c e n t u r y f l i r t a t i o n w i t h m e d i e v a l c h i v a l r y " ( 5 7 ) . 5 Y e t a more d i r e c t a f f i n i t y might be a r g u e d w i t h a t r a d i t i o n of s e c u l a r a n d , c i v i c p a g e a n t r y t h a t s t r e t c h e s back to the s t r e e t shows o f the E l i z a b e t h a n s . L i k e the L o r d Mayor's Shows and o c c a s i o n a l m u n i c i p a l 5 T i c k n e r a l s o d i s c u s s e s what she c o n s i d e r s to be more o v e r t i n f l u e n c e s from b o t h L a b o u r and' S t a t e . I would a r g u e however t h a t t h e " s t a t e r i t u a l , w h ich r e f i n e d and d e v e l o p e d the p u b l i c image of t h e B r i t i s h monarchy i n the heyday of ' i n v e n t e d t r a d i t i o n s ' between 1877 and 1914 [and] l a b o u r -movement a c t i v i t i e s from May Day c e l e b r a t i o n s to the r i t u a l welcome of r e l e a s e d p r i s o n e r s " (56) were, l i k e the s u f f r a g e p a g e a n t s , i n f o r m e d b.y a t r a d i t i o n of p a g e a n t r y which had e x i s t e d i n B r i t a i n f o r c e n t u r i e s , f l o u r i s h i n g i n t h e l a t e 1 6 t h and e a r l y 17th c e n t u r i e s , and f o r v a r i o u s r e a s o n s a g a i n a n s w e r i n g t h e needs of a number of o r g a n i z a t i o n s i n the l a t e 1 9 t h and e a r l y 20th c e n t u r i e s . F o r f u r t h e r i n f o r m a t i o n on the e a r l y h i s t o r y of E n g l i s h p a g e a n t r y see D a v i d M. B e r g e r o n ' s E n g l i s h C i v i c P a g e a n t r y 1558-1642. c e l e b r a t i o n s o f t h e 1 6 t h and e a r l y 1 7 t h c e n t u r y , t h e s e s u f f r a g e p r o c e s s i o n s drew upon h i s t o r y , m y t h o l o g y and m o r a l a l l e g o r y f o r p r i m a r y m a t t e r . And l i k e t h e i r p r e d e c e s s o r s t h e y were e m b l e m a t i c i n method and d i d a c t i c i n i n t e n t , i n s t r u c t i n g v i e w e r s by l e t t i n g them c o n t e m p l a t e h e r o i c examples of what c o u l d be a c h i e v e d . A l t h o u g h s u c h s t r e e t p a g e a n t r y , p a r t i c u l a r l y i n the c a s e o f the L o r d Mayor's Show, s u f f e r e d a d e c l i n e f o l l o w i n g i t s heyday i n the E l i z a b e t h a n / J a c o b e a n p e r i o d , i t e n j o y e d a minor r e n a i s s a n c e i n the l a t e 1 9th and e a r l y 2 0 t h c e n t u r i e s ( W i t h i n g t o n 119— 145), a f a c t r e f l e c t e d i n the e n t h u s i a s t i c o r g a n i z a t i o n of the s u f f r a g e P r o c e s s i o n s and t h e r e c e p t i o n a f f o r d e d them. Such s p e c t a c l e s s e r v e d not o n l y as a v i s u a l d i s p l a y of women's c o l l e c t i v e d e s i r e f o r the v o t e (much was made of the f a c t t h a t women of d i v e r s e c l a s s e s , o c c u p a t i o n s and i n t e r e s t s walked s i d e by s i d e ) , t h e y a l s o f u n c t i o n e d as t e s t a m e n t s to women's a c c o m p l i s h m e n t s b o t h t h r o u g h t h e s u c c e s s f u l o r g a n i z a t i o n of the p r o c e s s i o n s and t h e i r r e p r e s e n t a t i o n of famous women from a l l f a c e t s of h i s t o r y . The same i m p u l s e i n f o r m e d the s m a l l e r - s c a l e d P a g e a n t s w r i t t e n f o r p e r f o r m a n c e a t s u f f r a g e m e e t i n g s and f u n d -r a i s i n g e n t e r t a i n m e n t s . The b e s t known of t h e s e , C i c e l y H a m i l t o n ' s P ageant of G r e a t Women,^ p r o d u c e d by E d i t h C r a i g 6 O t h e r examples of s u f f r a g e e n t e r t a i n m e n t s which r e l y upon the use of h i s t o r i c a l a n d/or a l l e g o r i c a l f i g u r e s a r e The  F i r s t A c t r e s s ( C h r i s t o p h e r S t . J o h n ) , Kingsway T h e a t r e , 8 May 1911, The R e f o r m i n g of A u g u s t u s ( I r e n e R u t h e r f o r d f o r t h e f i r s t AFL m a t i n e e a t t h e S c a l a T h e a t r e on 12 November 1909, o f f e r s a d i s p l a y of e x c e p t i o n a l women t h r o u g h h i s t o r y . A c t e d at v a r i o u s t i m e s by s u c h s u f f r a g e s y m p a t h i z e r s as E l l e n T e r r y and L i l l a h M c C a r t h y , H a m i l t o n ' s P a g e a n t e x p l o i t s the s t a g e d e v i c e o f the " R e a l i z a t i o n " t o r e c r e a t e a " s u f f r a g e c a r t o o n " by W. M. M a r g e t s o n . ^ L i k e i t s o r i g i n a l , the p i e c e p r e s e n t s the a l l e g o r i c a l f i g u r e of Woman p l e a d i n g her c a s e b e f o r e a f e m a l e J u s t i c e w h i l e her h e c t o r i n g opponent P r e j u d i c e ( p l a y e d by the s o l e male i n a c a s t of f o r t y - s e v e n ) r a i s e s a number of arguments a g a i n s t women's e n f r a n c h i s e m e n t . Each i s answered by a pa r a d e of women from h i s t o r y g r o u ped t o p r o v i d e p u r e l y v i s u a l r e t o r t s to t he c a s e of P r e j u d i c e . In f a c t , the o n l y "famous woman" to speak i s 18th c e n t u r y a c t o r Nance O l d f i e l d , who makes her a p p e a r a n c e w i t h the group of A r t i s t s . T h i s was p r o b a b l y a c o n s c i o u s d e c i s i o n by H a m i l t o n i n r e c o g n i t i o n of the p l a y ' s AFL c o n n e c t i o n as w e l l as an o b v i o u s a t t e m p t to e x p l o i t the t a l e n t and r e p u t a t i o n of E l l e n T e r r y who too k the r o l e i n the p l a y ' s f i r s t p r o d u c t i o n , and who went on to p r a i s e the work as " t h e f i n e s t p r a c t i c a l p i e c e of p o l i t i c a l p r o p a g a n d a " ( V o t e s f o r Women 19 November 1909 1 1 7 ) . The Pag e a n t ' s a f f i n i t y w i t h the l a r g e r P r o c e s s i o n s i s a p p a r e n t i n the McLe o d ) , R e h e a r s a l T h e a t r e , 15 J a n u a r y 1910 and An A l l e g o r y ( V e r a W e n t w o r t h ) , R e h e a r s a l T h e a t r e , 25 A p r i l 1911. 7 The r e a l i z a t i o n , or r e c r e a t i o n on s t a g e of a r e c o g n i z a b l e work o f a r t was a t h e a t r i c a l d e v i c e p o p u l a r t h r o u g h o u t t h e 19th and e a r l y 2 0 t h c e n t u r i e s . F o r an e x h a u s t i v e s t u d y o f the c o n v e n t i o n see M a r t i n M e i s e l ' s R e a l i s a t i o n s . o t h e r famous women c h o s e n f o r i n c l u s i o n . Among the " l e a r n e d women" f o r i n s t a n c e , summoned i n r e s p o n s e t o P r e j u d i c e ' s c l a i m t h a t women " s c o r n l e a r n i n g . . . shun k n o w l e d g e " i s Jane A u s t e n , a l r e a d y commemorated by the WWSL i n t h e 1908 P r o c e s s i o n . Abbess H i l d a , who would r e a p p e a r i n the C o r o n a t i o n P r o c e s s i o n , f i g u r e s h e r e among t h e " s a i n t l y women," w h i l e J o an of A r c , " p a t r o n s a i n t " of the movement's most r a d i c a l wing, makes her a p p e a r a n c e among t h e " W a r r i o r s . " C o n f r o n t e d by t h i s show of e x c e p t i o n a l women, P r e j u d i c e u l t i m a t e l y f a l l s s i l e n t and " s l i n k s away." I use t h e word " e x c e p t i o n a l " i n t h i s c o n t e x t a d v i s e d l y , aware t h a t f o r E l i z a b e t h R o b i n s a t l e a s t " t h e E x c e p t i o n a l , Woman i s one o f our c h i e f o b s t a c l e s " (Way S t a t i o n s 7 0 ) . A c c o r d i n g to R o b i n s men have c o n t r o l l e d and d i v i d e d women t h r o u g h o u t h i s t o r y by " d i n t of l a b e l l i n g ' e x c e p t i o n a l ' t h o s e women whose c a p a c i t y c o u l d n ot be d e n i e d . " When women a c c e p t s uch a d e s i g n a t i o n , however, t h e y e n d o r s e a s y s t e m which c o n t i n u e s to o p p r e s s women as a g r o u p . I n s t e a d , R o b i n s would a r g u e t h a t they s h o u l d s u b o r d i n a t e t h e i r i n d i v i d u a l c l a i m to m e r i t as t h a t i s d e f i n e d by male o p i n i o n , i n the i n t e r e s t s of women's common good.' I would a r g u e t h a t t h i s i s what p i e c e s l i k e H a m i l t o n ' s P a g e a n t a t t e m p t to do. They seek t o r e c l a i m t h e s e " e x c e p t i o n a l " women as p a r t of a l a r g e r 8 When the Pageant t o u r e d the p r o v i n c e s and a c t o r s were s o u g h t f o r the v a r i o u s r o l e s , t h e p a r t o f Joan of A r c p r o v e d t o be e x t r e m e l y p o p u l a r , a f a c t w h i c h o c c a s i o n a l l y r e s u l t e d i n a l t e r c a t i o n s w i t h " e n t i r e l y u n s u i t a b l e " would-be J o a n s (Edy 4 3 - 4 3 ) . 73 f e m i n i s t movement. Such women a r e d r a f t e d i n t h e P a g e a n t s and P r o c e s s i o n s as i t were, t o f i g h t " s h o u l d e r to s h o u l d e r " w i t h t h o s e a c t i v e l y engaged i n a s t r u g g l e to s e c u r e women's r i g h t s . S u f f r a g e p a g e a n t s and p r o c e s s i o n s drew upon a l e g e n d a r y and h i s t o r i c a l p a s t to a r g u e the movement's i n e v i t a b l e t r i u m p h . But t h i s was j u s t one k i n d of p r o p a g a n d a p l a y . In a n o t h e r t y p e , the g r i m f a c t s of the age were r e f l e c t e d i n a s e r i e s of g r i t t y s o c i a l dramas d e s i g n e d to make a u d i e n c e s f e e l u n e a s y . Among the f i r s t wave of s u c h works was The  A p p l e , p r e s e n t e d a t t h e C o u r t T h e a t r e f o r a s i n g l e m a t i n e e on 14 March 1909. I t s a u t h o r was head of the AFL p l a y d e p a r t m e n t , I n e z B e n s u s a n . The p l a y , l i k e most of the non-comic s u f f r a g e drama, d e p i c t s the v i c t i m i z a t i o n of women w i t h i n a s o c i a l h i e r a r c h y which h a b i t u a l l y d e - v a l u e s them. L i k e R o b i n s ' V o t e s f o r Women, the p i e c e i s r o o t e d i n the " p r o b l e m p l a y " g e n r e o f the 1890s ( d e v e l o p e d i n a number of works by P i n e r o , J o n e s and W i l d e ) which i n t u r n paved the way f o r the "drama of i d e a s " p r a c t i s e d by s u c h p l a y w r i g h t s as Shaw, G r a n v i l l e B a r k e r and G a l s w o r t h y . L i k e the p r o b l e m p l a y , The A p p l e t a k e s as i t s s u b j e c t f e m a l e s e x u a l i t y but l i k e the l a t e r d i s c u s s i o n p l a y s , i t goes beyond the m e r i t s of t h e i n d i v i d u a l c a s e to c o n s i d e r the i s s u e i n a b r o a d e r s o c i a l c o n t e x t . S u b t i t l e d "An e p i s o d e of To-day i n one A c t , " Bensusan a c t u a l l y d e p i c t s what R o b i n s had o n l y r e c o u n t e d : an 74 i n s t a n c e of s e x u a l h a r a s s m e n t l i n k e d to economic e x p l o i t a t i o n . B e n s u s a n ' s h e r o i n e , H e l e n Payson ( t h e name i s s i g n i f i c a n t ) c r i e s out a g a i n s t the " s a c r i f i c e " of h e r l i f e f o r t he w e l l - b e i n g of her b r o t h e r , " t h e a p p l e " o f h i s p a r e n t s ' eye and p l a y ' s t i t l e : I know t h a t e v e r y penny t h a t can be s a v e d or s q u e e z e d out of the m i s e r a b l e f a m i l y e x c h e q u e r goes to s u p p o r t the A p p l e , i n s t e a d of s u p p o r t i n g us! And I c o n s i d e r i t ' s h i g h time the A p p l e was s e l f - s u p p o r t i n g . He's o l d e r than Norah or me -he's a man, a s t r o n g h e a l t h y male t h i n g . What r i g h t has he to e v e r y t h i n g , w h i l e we g i r l s a r e s t r u g g l i n g to c o v e r o u r s e l v e s d e c e n t l y ? (32) H e l e n works i n a c i t y o f f i c e , Norah (an a b s e n t s i s t e r ) s e r v e s as an e x p l o i t e d n u r s e r y g o v e r n e s s and Ann, the o n l y s i s t e r "unemployed," h a n d l e s a l l the d o m e s t i c d u t i e s ( g i v e n an a p p a r e n t l y f e c k l e s s mother) w h i l e she a w a i t s the s i n g l e " p r o f e s s i o n " open to h e r , m a r r i a g e . Ann's h o u s e h o l d work i n c l u d e s " s l a v i n g " f o r her b r o t h e r ( s h e i s even e x p e c t e d to c l e a n h i s b o o t s ) , a s t a t e of a f f a i r s not uncommon i n many w o r k i n g - c l a s s f a m i l i e s of the day. Lynn J a r n i e s o n ' s s t u d y of 9 In C a n d i d a Shaw p r o v i d e s us w i t h a m i d d l e - c l a s s i n s t a n c e , as h i s h e r o i n e r e c o u n t s how her husband's mother and t h r e e s i s t e r s have p a i d the p r i c e f o r making him " s t r o n g , c l e v e r , and happy." I n d e e d , C a n d i d a goes on to show how she h e r s e l f p e r p e t u a t e s the a r r a n g e m e n t as M o r r e l l ' s p r o t e c t o r - w i f e ( 1 5 8 ) . Yet i n Shaw's p l a y t h e s y s t e m i s n e v e r q u e s t i o n e d ; i t r e q u i r e s f o r i t s v a l i d a t i o n o n l y M o r r e l l ' s c o n s c i o u s n e s s of the s a c r i f i c e s made on h i s b e h a l f . U l t i m a t e l y , C a n d i d a i s a c e l e b r a t i o n of woman i n her d o m e s t i c r o l e s , not v e r y f a r " W o r k i n g - C l a s s M o t h e r s and D a u g h t e r s i n Urban S c o t l a n d c. 1890-1915" r e c o u n t s s i m i l a r p r a c t i c e s i n d i s t u r b i n g l y -s i m i l a r i m a g e r y : Mary, f o r example, w r y l y r e m a r k e d : 'They were the a p p l e of my m o t h e r ' s eye. N o t h i n g c o u l d go wrong w i t h the b o y s ' ( s h e had j u s t d e s c r i b e d how she and her s i s t e r s had t o wash the w h i t e g l o v e s and p o l i s h the p a t e n t l e a t h e r shoes w h i c h t h e i r b r o t h e r s wore 'to the d a n c i n g ' ) . A n n i e made s i m i l a r c o m p l a i n t s w i t h r e f e r e n c e t o her b r o t h e r : 'My mother was more l e n i e n t w i t h t h e boys than she was w i t h the g i r l s . She p r e f e r r e d boys of c o u r s e . My mother used to t h i n k boys s h o u l d n ' t have to do any-t h i n g i n the house, t h a t was a g i r l ' s p l a c e you know.' (64) As J a m i e s o n goes on to p o i n t o u t , i t wasn't the d o i n g of the housework t h a t o f f e n d e d t h e s e women so much as the i n s i s t e n c e by t h e i r mothers on the male's h i g h e r s t a t u s : " t h i s e x p e r i e n c e f o r c e d them to see not j u s t gender d i f f e r e n c e but h i e r a r c h y " ( 6 4 ) . In B e n s u s a n ' s p l a y i t i s not the mother who i n s i s t s upon t h i s s t a t e of a f f a i r s , i t i s the f a t h e r . A l t h o u g h n e i t h e r p a r e n t a c t u a l l y a p p e a r s i n the p l a y , the mother i s o n l y m e n t i o n e d o c c a s i o n a l l y removed from K a t o ' s c h a r a t e r i z a t i o n of her as w i f e , mother, and v e r y l i t t l e e l s e (Case of R e b e l l i o u s Susan 154). ( d r a m a t i c a l l y as w e l l as t h e m a t i c a l l y she p r o v e s s o m e t h i n g of a c y p h e r ) w h i l e r e f e r e n c e s to the f a t h e r permeate t h e p l a y and e f f e c t i v e l y shape i t s f o r w a r d movement. "Awakened t o a s e n s e of t h e i n j u s t i c e of i t a l l " H e l e n a nnounces to her s i s t e r : "I'm g o i n g t o f i g h t f o r my r i g h t s , your r i g h t s , e q u a l r i g h t s f o r us a l l " ( 3 2 ) . What has prompted t h i s s p i r i t of r e v o l t ? I t u n f o l d s t h a t H e l e n has been s e x u a l l y h a r a s s e d a t t h e o f f i c e , k i s s e d by a m a r r i e d " f a m i l y f r i e n d " who i s a l s o h er f a t h e r ' s e m p l o y e r . She r e s p o n d s by t h r o w i n g a r u l e r a t him, q u i t t i n g h er j o b , and a n n o u n c i n g her p l a n s to e m i g r a t e t o Canada, i n t h e company of o t h e r women o n l y . A l l she a s k s i s a s h a r e o f t h e money l e f t t o the c h i l d r e n by t h e i r g r a n d f a t h e r . The " a p p l e , " however, l a y s c l a i m t o the f u n d w h i c h he m a i n t a i n s he needs i n o r d e r t o marry w e l l . I r o n i c a l l y h i s s i s t e r s a r e made to s u f f e r f i n a n c i a l h a r d s h i p so t h a t a n o t h e r woman ( c o n f o r m i n g to s o c i e t y ' s v i e w s of p r o p e r f e m a l e b e h a v i o u r ) can marry i n t o t h e f a m i l y . H e l e n i s " t r y i n g to go s t r a i g h t . T r y i n g t o h e l p [ h e r ] s e l f , - to f i g h t [ h e r ] way," but what can she do? The f a m i l y f r i e n d a p p e a r s b e a r i n g t h e r u l e r ' s mark, "a l a r g e p a t c h of s t i c k i n g p l a s t e r on h i s f o r e h e a d , " t o i n f o r m her t h a t a l l ' s w e l l a t work and she can r e t u r n tomorrow, r e t u r n i n H e l e n ' s words " t o the beck and c a l l of s m a l l - m i n d e d , s e l f - s a t i s f i e d men" l i k e h er b r o t h e r . But " t h a t ' s where the d e g r a d a t i o n comes i n . The work's a l l r i g h t . I don't mind t h e work, but i t ' s h a v i n g to k n u c k l e under to t h e v e r y men I w o u l d n ' t even wipe my b o o t s on i n t h e o r d i n a r y c o u r s e of t h i n g s , t h a t ' s d e g r a d i n g " ( 3 5 ) . I t i s worth n o t i n g t h a t f o r H e l e n t h e work p l a c e s i m p l y d u p l i c a t e s t h e o p p r e s s i v e n e s s of the home. B o t h e n d o r s e a p a t r i a r c h a l h i e r a r c h y ; a t work t h e b r o t h e r s i m p l y becomes t h e b o s s . In t h i s t h e p l a y seems t o c o r r o b o r a t e Jane L e w i s ' s s t a t e m e n t ( c o n t a i n e d w i t h i n an e x a m i n a t i o n o f women's work c. 1870-1950) t h a t t h e " p a t t e r n of male dominance and c o n t r o l a t the w o r k p l a c e must be r e l a t e d to power r e l a t i o n s h i p s w i t h i n t h e f a m i l y , f o r i t has been h y p o t h e s i z e d t h a t male d o m i n a t i o n of t h e p r e - i n d u s t r i a l f a m i l y work u n i t and the p r a c t i c e o f s e x u a l l y s e g r e g a t i n g work p r o c e s s e s was c a r r i e d ' o v e r i n t o the f a c t o r y when t h e w o r k p l a c e s e p a r a t e d from t h e home" ( 1 7 2 ) . 1 0 Nor does t h e w o r l d o f f a s h i o n o f f e r an a c c e p t a b l e r e f u g e . I n s t e a d o f a pa r a d e of d e l i g h t f u l t e a d r e s s e s and b a l l gowns, the common c o i n of t h e p e r i o d ' s s o c i e t y drama, Bensusan o f f e r s us a s u b t l e but t e l l i n g ' c l o t h e s i n c i d e n t ' : as the p l a y opens Ann i s s e w i n g a d r e s s t h a t w i l l a l l o w Norah to a t t e n d a p a r t y . And so c o n c e r n e d i s she t h a t Norah be g i v e n t h e r a r e o p p o r t u n i t y to e n j o y h e r s e l f t h a t she a c t u a l l y pawns her 10 H a m i l t o n a r g u e s i n a s i m i l a r v e i n : "Because h e r work as a w i f e and mother was rewarded o n l y by a wage o f s u b s i s t e n c e , i t was assumed t h a t no o t h e r f o r m of work she u n d e r t o o k was worthy o f a h i g h e r r e w a r d ; b e c a u s e the o n l y t r a d e t h a t was a t one t i m e open t o her was p a i d a t the l o w e s t p o s s i b l e r a t e , i t was assumed t h a t i n e v e r y o t h e r t r a d e i n t o w hich she g r a d u a l l y f o r c e d her way she must a l s o be p a i d a t t h e l o w e s t p o s s i b l e r a t e . The custom of c o n s i d e r i n g h e r work as w o r t h l e s s ( f r o m an economic p o i n t o f view) o r i g i n a t e d i n the home, but i t has f o l l o w e d h e r out i n t o the w o r l d " ( M a r r i a g e  as a T r a d e 96) . 78 n e c k l a c e to pay f o r t h e f a b r i c . D u r i n g t h e i r i n i t i a l e xchange H e l e n e x p e r t l y f i t s t h e gown's b o d i c e d i r e c t l y o n t o Ann, who c a n n o t t h e n e x t r i c a t e h e r s e l f . As t h e s t a g e b u s i n e s s makes e x p l i c i t she i s , l i k e o t h e r women, t r a p p e d by c l o t h i n g itself.'''''' H e l e n s e e k s f r e e d o m from a s t a t e o f a f f a i r s t h a t v i c t i m i z e s h e r a t e v e r y t u r n p r e c i s e l y b e c a u s e she i s a woman: " I don't want your d e c e n t h u sband. I want a l i t t l e p l e a s u r e , a g l i m p s e of l i f e , a t a s t e of t h e j o y o f l i v i n g , a few pence i n my p o c k e t , my r i g h t s as an i n d i v i d u a l - " ( 3 7 ) . T h i s may have been one of t h e r e a s o n s t h a t t h e s u f f r a g e movement p r o v e d so a t t r a c t i v e t o women; i t s a c t i v i t i e s were o f t e n e x c i t i n g and e n j o y a b l e and i t p r o v i d e d c o m p a n i o n s h i p and work t h a t r e c o g n i z e d women's s e l f - w o r t h . A c c o r d i n g t o Emmeline P e t h i c k - L a w r e n c e , T r e a s u r e r of t h e WSPU: In s p i t e of o p p o s i t i o n on e v e r y hand, i n s p i t e of h a r d work t o which t h e r e was no " l e t up", i n s p i t e of o c c a s i o n a l v i o l e n t a s s a u l t and i m p r i s o n -ment and h a r d s h i p of e v e r y k i n d , t h e r e was a s p i r i t of t r i u m p h , l a u g h t e r and j o y t h a t p o s s e s s e d our movement i n 1906 and u n c e a s i n g l y f o r many y e a r s to come. T h e r e was an i n t e n s e s e n s e of u n i o n and c o m r a d e s h i p , l i f t e d i n t o d e v o t i o n by 11 As Jane Marcus r e c o r d s , E l i z a b e t h R o b i n s made t h e same p o i n t when she n o t e d " t h a t t h e P a r i s f a s h i o n house of Worth had i n v e n t e d t h e ' h o b b l e s k i r t ' a t e x a c t l y t h e moment when the s u f f r a g e t t e s were s t r i d i n g toward f r e e d o m " (The C o n v e r t x i ) . the common s e r v i c e of a g r e a t i d e a , t h e r e was the c e r t a i n t y of u l t i m a t e v i c t o r y , and b e s i d e t h a t , t h e r e were e x h i l a r a t i n g a d v e n t u r e s , e v e n t s and comic i n t e r l u d e s e v e r y day. (164) H e l e n , however, does not run out t o j o i n a s u f f r a g e s o c i e t y She a t t e m p t s t o evade t h e s y s t e m by f l e e i n g w i t h o t h e r d i s s a t i s f i e d women t o the s u p p o s e d l y new w o r l d o f t h e c o l o n i e s . U n f o r t u n a t e l y s u c h e s c a p e p r o v e s i m p o s s i b l e . The o n l y " f r e e d o m " o f f e r e d i s a n o t h e r form of s e x u a l o p p r e s s i o n Says t h e s o - c a l l e d f r i e n d : Freedom? You know what your answer was when I o f f e r e d you t h a t . ... You t h o u g h t i t b r u t a l of me. So i t was. But I'd l i k e t o g i v e you a good t i m e . No g o o d - l o o k i n g g i r l ought to f i g h t f o r a l i v i n g . I've t o l d you t h i s o v e r and o v e r a g a i n . Do you suppose I don't u n d e r s t a n d ? I'd l i k e to t a k e you a b r o a d , anywhere you p l e a s e , - show you how t o e n j o y l i f e , - l e t you r e v e l i n p r e t t y t h i n g s , buy you new h a t s enough to t u r n your head, - t a k e you t o d a n c e s , t h e a t r e s , . . . (38) Such, a c c o r d i n g to Be n s u s a n , a r e t h e male v a l u a t i o n s of women, o b j e c t s t o be d r e s s e d up or p r e s s e d down as men deem f i t . Y e t d e s p i t e her p o r t r a y a l o f H e l e n ' s b r o t h e r as a s e l f i s h and i n c o n s i d e r a t e b r u t e who i s b e s t e d by h i s s i s t e r i n e v e r y v e r b a l s k i r m i s h , Bensusan does not p a i n t e v e r y man 80 as a v i l l a i n . In f a c t the " f a m i l y f r i e n d " i s a l l o w e d to s t a t e e x p l i c i t l y , "I'm not a v i l l a i n i n a melodrama, I'm a r e a s o n a b l e human b e i n g " ( 3 8 ) . As f o r the head of t h e f a m i l y , H e l e n s a y s , "I'm not g r u m b l i n g w i t h F a t h e r , he's a c t i n g a c c o r d i n g t o h i s l i g h t s I s u p p o s e . I t ' s the g o s p e l of the g e n e r a t i o n t h a t e v e r y t h i n g must be done f o r t h e boy" ( 3 2 ) . I t i s t h e s o c i a l and p o l i t i c a l c o n d i t i o n of E n g l a n d t h a t i s a t f a u l t , and t h r o u g h her d e p i c t i o n of women's o p p r e s s i o n under t h a t s y s t e m , Bensusan hoped to e n c o u r a g e her l a r g e l y s y m p a t h e t i c a u d i e n c e to f i g h t f o r change. The p l a y ends w i t h a t e l l i n g image; the two men d e p a r t h a v i n g t r i u m p h e d o v e r p o t e n t i a l f e m a l e r e b e l l i o n , l e a v i n g Ann r a t t l i n g her p o t s and H e l e n t u r n i n g the wheel o f the sewing machine " w i t h t e a r s s t r e a m i n g down her c h e e k s " ( 3 9 ) . Such a t a b l e a u r e s t s upon but a l s o c o r r e c t s a t r a d i t i o n of s o - c a l l e d " s o c i a l r e a l i s t ' i c o n o g r a p h y which s e n t i m e n t a l i z e d t h e s e a m s t r e s s as an o p p r e s s e d but p i c t u r e s q u e l a b o u r e r , engaged as she was i n 12 s u i t a b l y f e m i n i n e work. In B e f o r e S u n r i s e , a o n e - a c t drama by B e s s i e H a t t o n , s u c h e x p l o i t a t i o n i s e x t e n d e d to m i d d l e - c l a s s women of f o r t y y e a r s e a r l i e r . I t i s o n l y u n f o r t u n a t e t h a t i n H a t t o n ' s a t t e m p t t o evoke ' h i s t o r i c a l ' s p e e c h , the d i a l o g u e becomes 12 As T i c k n e r shows, the same i m p u l s e i n f o r m e d t h e 1909 " V o t e s f o r W o r k e r s " p o s t e r of W.F. W i n t e r which d e p i c t s a worn and m i d d l e - a g e d woman d r e s s e d i n heavy brown s e r g e w o r k i n g a t a se w i n g machine ( 5 0 b ) . The p o s t e r was j o i n t w i n n e r of the A r t i s t s ' S u f f r a g e League p o s t e r c o m p e t i t i o n of t h a t y e a r . s t i l t e d and awkward. The p l a y , f i r s t p e r f o r m e d a t the A l b e r t H a l l T h e a t r e on 11 December 1909, i s s e t i n 1867, the y e a r t h a t John S t u a r t M i l l made h i s h i s t o r i c m o t i o n i n P a r l i a m e n t to amend t h e R e p r e s e n t a t i o n of the P e o p l e B i l l so t h a t the word " p e r s o n " s h o u l d r e p l a c e t h a t o f "man." The p r o p o s e d amendment was d e f e a t e d but i t began a p e r i o d of a g i t a t i o n f o r f e m a l e e n f r a n c h i s e m e n t t h a t would c o n t i n u e to g a t h e r momentum i n t o the t w e n t i e t h c e n t u r y . L i k e B e n s u s a n , H a t t o n i s c o n c e r n e d t o d e m o n s t r a t e women's o p p r e s s i o n w i t h i n a s y s t e m c o n s t r u c t e d to p r o t e c t male i n t e r e s t s . In B e f o r e  S u n r i s e t h e son i s e n t i t l e d to t h e b e s t of e d u c a t i o n s ("To Rugby he goes and l a t e r t o the U n i v e r s i t y " ) w h i l e i t i s enough f o r the d a u g h t e r t h a t "she can p l a y and s i n g n i c e l y , w r i t e a ne a t l a d y l i k e hand speak a l i t t l e F r e n c h , sew and e m b r o i d e r " ( 6 1 ) . When the d a u g h t e r shows s i g n s , however, of d e m u r r i n g t o the m a r r i a g e p r o p o s a l of an e x t r e m e l y w e a l t h y , hence most s u i t a b l e , s u i t o r , she i s f o r c e d to acknowledge her l a c k of e d u c a t i o n which l e a v e s h e r , l i k e V i d a L e v e r i n g , i n c a p a b l e of e a r n i n g any o t h e r k i n d o f l i v i n g . A l t h o u g h she i s , l i k e H e l e n i n The A p p l e , drawn to a l i f e o f f e m a l e c o m p a n i o n s h i p , her p a r e n t s r e f u s e to a l l o w i t , i n s i s t i n g i n s t e a d upon her m a r r i a g e t o a man who has "has run a c o u r s e of low, common p r o f l i g a c y " ( 6 4 ) . H a t t o n e x p l o r e s from a woman's p e r s p e c t i v e the c e n t r a l s i t u a t i o n of P i n e r o ' s The  P r o f l i g a t e ( 1 8 8 7 : 1 8 8 9 ) . In the l a t t e r p l a y a d i s s o l u t e man about town s u c c e s s f u l l y m a r r i e s a sweet young woman; a l t h o u g h he s u f f e r s from g u i l t o v e r h i s p a s t e s c a p a d e s , a u d i e n c e r e s i s t a n c e to h i s t o r m e n t e d s u i c i d e was su c h t h a t the p l a y ' s c o n c l u s i o n was r e w r i t t e n and he was f o r g i v e n . Such was not the c a s e f o r the ' t a i n t e d ' woman of the p i e c e . J a n e t P r i e s t , the young woman seduced, by the p l a y ' s p r o f l i g a t e , must abandon a l o v e match and e m i g r a t e to the ' c o l o n i e s when her p a s t i s d i s c o v e r e d . In B e f o r e S u n r i s e the d a u g h t e r ' s e m o t i o n a l and p h y s i c a l w e l l - b e i n g i s s a c r i f i c e d i n the i n t e r e s t s of i g n o r a n c e t o u t e d as i n n o c e n c e . Such an a t t i t u d e , the p l a y makes c l e a r , p r o t e c t s men's l i c e n t i o u s n e s s a t the c o s t of women's h e a l t h . And i n a d d r e s s i n g t h i s i s s u e H a t t o n a n t i c i p a t e s by a few y e a r s C h r i s t a b e l P a n k h u r s t ' s campaign a g a i n s t " t h e G r e a t S c o u r g e " of v e n e r e a l d i s e a s e , a b a t t l e c h a r a c t e r i z e d by the p i t h y s l o g a n , " V o t e s f o r Women and C h a s t i t y f o r Men." L i k e B e n s u s a n , however, H a t t o n does not l a y t h e blame upon i n d i v i d u a l men, a l t h o u g h i t i s t r u e t h a t t h e male c h a r a c t e r s i n her p l a y a r e o v e r b e a r i n g , s e l f i s h , i n s e n s i t i v e and i n the c a s e of the f u t u r e husband, B u l l o c k , d i s e a s e d as w e l l . Women's o p p r e s s i o n i s , i n the words of one f e m a l e c h a r a c t e r (and n o t e a g a i n the use of " r e s t r i c t i v e " c l o t h i n g ) " t h e f a u l t o f t h e f a l s e c o n d i t i o n s under which we l i v e . Our minds a r e e n v e l o p e d i n moral s t a y s , j u s t as our b o d i e s a r e p i n c h e d and t o r t u r e d to t a k e on an u n n a t u r a l and u g l y s h a p e " ( 6 4 ) . B e f o r e S u n r i s e , d e s c r i b e d by t h e r e v i e w e r f o r V o t e s f o r Women as an " e x t r e m e l y t o u c h i n g " p l a y " i n which t h e h e l p l e s s p o s i t i o n of t h e m i d - V i c t o r i a n g i r l was v e r y f o r c i b l y shown" (4 27 J a n u a r y 1911 270), i s a c r y f o r women's e d u c a t i o n ; t h r o u g h i t comes e n l i g h t e n m e n t , s e l f - r e s p e c t and p r o t e c t i o n . ^ A n o t h e r p l a y c o n c e r n e d w i t h e d u c a t i n g women to t h e i r o p p r e s s i o n w i t h i n the e x i s t i n g s o c i a l and p o l i t i c a l s y s t e m i s In The Workhouse, w r i t t e n by WWSL member M a r g a r e t N e v i n s o n and p r o d u c e d by E d i t h C r a i g ' s P i o n e e r P l a y e r s ^ a t th e Kingsway T h e a t r e on 8 May 1911. N e v i n s o n had, a t C r a i g ' s r e q u e s t , a d a p t e d the p l a y from a s k e t c h she had e a r l i e r w r i t t e n e n t i t l e d " D e t a i n e d by M a r i t a l A u t h o r i t y . " The c o m p o s i t i o n of t h e p i e c e was, she m a i n t a i n e d , m o t i v a t e d by a 13 C i c e l y H a m i l t o n a l s o took the o p p o r t u n i t y to d e s c r y " t h i s c o n d e m n a t i o n to i n t e l l e c t u a l b a r r e n n e s s [ w h i c h ] i s the s t r o n g e s t p r o o f of t h e e s s e n t i a l s e r v i l i t y of woman's p o s i t i o n i n t h e eyes of man" ( M a r r i a g e 48) Women's e d u c a t i o n she c o n t e n d s " u n l i k e her b r o t h e r s ' , was not d i r e c t e d towards s e l f - d e v e l o p m e n t and t h e b r i n g i n g out of n a t u r a l c a p a b i l i t i e s , but t o w a r d s p l e a s i n g some one e l s e " ( 4 1 ) . L i k e H a t t o n she condemns the " c o n s p i r a c y of s i l e n c e " w h i c h has k e p t women i g n o r a n t or i n n o c e n t of the " r i s k s " w hich men's " l o o s e l i v i n g " may have f o r them and t h e i r c h i l d r e n ( 5 4 ) . 14 The P i o n e e r P l a y e r s was f o u n d e d i n March 1911 by E d i t h C r a i g and gave a n n u a l s e a s o n s of s u b s c r i p t i o n p e r f o r m a n c e s u n t i l 1921. I t s l a s t p r o d u c t i o n was Susan G l a s p e l l ' s The  V e r g e , Regent T h e a t r e , 29 March 1925. The P i o n e e r P l a y e r s had two main o b j e c t i v e s : "1. To p r o d u c e p l a y s d e a l i n g w i t h a l l k i n d s of movements of c o n t e m p o r a r y i n t e r e s t . 2. To a s s i s t s o c i e t i e s w hich have been formed a l l o v e r t h e c o u n t r y i n s u p p o r t of s u c h movements, by h e l p i n g them to o r g a n i z e d r a m a t i c p e r f o r m a n c e s , i t h a v i n g been a s s e r t e d t h a t 'one p l a y i s worth a hundred s p e e c h e s ' where p r o p a g a n d a i s c o n c e r n e d " ( t a k e n from the programme f o r the T h i r d S u b s c r i p t i o n P e r f o r m a n c e , Savoy T h e a t r e , November 26, 1 9 1 1 ) . In t h e Workhouse was p a r t of the F i r s t S u b s c r i p t i o n P e r f o r m a n c e , w h i c h a l s o i n c l u d e d C h r i s t o p h e r S t . J o h n ' s The  F i r s t A c t r e s s and C i c e l y H a m i l t o n ' s J a c k and J i l l and a F r i e n d . d e s i r e " t o show the p a r l o u s c o n d i t i o n of t w e n t i e t h c e n t u r y womanhood under the u n j u s t G i l b e r t i a n muddle of u n i - s e x u a l l e g i s l a t i o n " (11). L i k e H a t t o n , N e v i n s o n o v e r t l y a t t a c k s m o r a l i t y ' s d o u b l e s t a n d a r d : "I have a t t e m p t e d to i l l u s t r a t e f rom l i f e some of the h a r d s h i p s of the law to an u n r e p r e s e n t e d sex, the c r u e l p unishment meted out to women, and to women o n l y , f o r any b r e a c h of t r a d i t i o n a l m o r a l i t y , the r u i n of the g i r l , t h e a b s o l u t e immunity of the mal e . . . " (21). S e t i n a workhouse ward, the p l a y uses a seven member, a l l - f e m a l e c a s t , w i t h e v e r y c h a r a c t e r d r e s s e d a c c o r d i n g to r e g u l a t i o n i n the i l l - f i t t i n g b l u e c o t t o n gowns of p a u p e r s . I t u n f o l d s , d u r i n g t h e c o u r s e of the women's c o n v e r s a t i o n , t h a t Mrs. C l e a v e r , "a r e s p e c t a b l e , m i d d l e - a g e d m a t r o n " i s b e i n g d e t a i n e d i n the workhouse b e c a u s e her husband does not choo s e to l e a v e . And as l o n g as t h i s " d r u n k a r d " w i s h e s to s t a y she too i s o b l i g e d to r e m a i n , d e s p i t e the f a c t t h a t s h e ' s a d r e s s - m a k e r b o t h a b l e and w i l l i n g to e a r n her own l i v i n g . Her p l i g h t i s h e a r d w i t h sympathy from the o t h e r i n m a t e s , and P e n e l o p e , "a handsome, v o l u p t u o u s woman, about t h i r t y , " o f f e r s her own s o l u t i o n to the p r o b l e m of s e x u a l i n e q u a l i t y . W i t h "a drunken b e a s t of a f a t h e r , as s p e n t ' i s time a - d r i n k i n g by day and a - b e a t i n g mother by n i g h t , " (53) P e n e l o p e l e a r n e d young the l e s s d e s i r a b l e s i d e of m a r r i a g e and has d e l i b e r a t e l y chosen to remain u n m a r r i e d . As s u c h she i s , under t h e law, s o l e g u a r d i a n of her f i v e c h i l d r e n a l t h o u g h she does manage to c o l l e c t c h i l d s u p p o r t f r o m the 85 v a r i o u s f a t h e r s . Mrs. C l e a v e r , on the o t h e r hand, a c k n o w l e d g e s , " I a i n ' t got no r e s p o n s i b i l i t y f o r my c h i l d r e n , b e i n g a m a r r i e d l a d y w i t the l i n e s " ( i . e . m a r r i a g e l i c e n c e ) ( 4 9 ) . A c c o r d i n g to s u f f r a g e a c t i v i s t Dora M o n t e f i o r e i t was j u s t t h i s c i r c u m s t a n c e t h a t c o n v i n c e d her t h a t she was a s u f f r a g i s t . When her husband d i e d and she was i n f o r m e d by her l a w y e r t h a t "In law, the c h i l d of the m a r r i e d woman has o n l y one p a r e n t , and t h a t i s the f a t h e r " (30) she r e s p o n d e d i n terms t h a t echo P e n e l o p e : " I f t h a t i s the s t a t e of the law, a woman i s much b e t t e r o f f as a man's m i s t r e s s than as h i s w i f e , as f a r as her c h i l d r e n a r e c o n c e r n e d " ( 3 0 ) . As P e n e l o p e p r e p a r e s to l e a v e the workhouse w i t h her newborn, she announces to the o t h e r s i n c l u d i n g the d e t a i n e d Mrs. C l e a v e r , "I'm g o i n g back tomorrow to my neat l i t t l e 'ome, wh i c h my l i d y - h e l p i s m i n d i n g f o r me, to my dear c h i l d r e n and my r e g u l a r income, and I c a n ' t say as I e n v i e s you m a r r i e d l i d i e s e i t h e r your r i n g s or your s l a v e r y " ( 6 5 ) . L i k e R o b i n s , N e v i n s o n does not p r e s e n t w o r k i n g c l a s s women o n l y as v i c t i m s to be r e s c u e d t h r o u g h m i d d l e - c l a s s p o l i t i c a l i n t e r v e n t i o n . In In the Workhouse P e n e l o p e s u c c e s s f u l l y n e g o t i a t e s man-made laws to s e c u r e her i n d e p e n d e n c e , and i n so d o i n g s t a n d s i n marked c o n t r a s t to Mrs. C l e a v e r who i s o b v i o u s l y v i c t i m i z e d as a r e s u l t of her a c q u i e s c e n c e . What G a l s w o r t h y ' s J u s t i c e d i d f o r the i s s u e of s o l i t a r y c o n f i n e m e n t , In the Workhouse d i d f o r t h a t of the f o r c e d d e t e n t i o n of w i v e s . N e v i n s o n c o n c l u d e d t h a t a t l e a s t p a r t l y as a r e s u l t of i t , the law was a l t e r e d l e s s than two y e a r s l a t e r , o s t e n s i b l y on the p r e c e d e n t of the 1891 J a c k s o n c a s e i n which the C o u r t of Ap p e a l had r u l e d t h a t a husband has no l e g a l r i g h t to k i d n a p h i s w i f e ( 2 2 5 - 6 ) . The p l a y a l s o a r o u s e d c o n s i d e r a b l e c o n t r o v e r s y a t the time of i t s p e r f o r m a n c e . A l t h o u g h p r a i s e d by c r i t i c s f o r the P a l l M a l l  G a z e t t e ("There i s n o t h i n g to a p p r o a c h i t i n d i r e c t n e s s and f o r c e " ) and R e y n o l d s M a g a z i n e ("I f o u n d i t i n t e r e s t i n g and c o n v i n c i n g " ) most r e v i e w e r s "were v e r y s h o c k e d and a p p a r e n t l y b l u s h e d i n the c o r r i d o r s i n shame and c o n f u s i o n a t the " p l a i n - s p e a k i n g ' " ( N e v i n s o n 2 2 4 ) . The S t a n d a r d wrote t h a t " t h e m a s c u l i n e p o r t i o n of the a u d i e n c e walked w i t h heads abashed i n the e n t r ' a c t e ; such t h i n g s had been s a i d upon the s t a g e , t h a t they were s u f f u s e d w i t h b l u s h e s " ( 2 2 5 ) . Yet a p p a r e n t l y not a s i n g l e woman e x p r e s s e d shock; i n f a c t N e v i n s o n r e c o r d s t h a t Mrs. P a n k h u r s t and Mrs. D e s p a r d , b o t h l e a d e r s i n the s u f f r a g e movement who had been r o u s e d to work f o r the women's cau s e as a r e s u l t of t h e i r e x p e r i e n c e s as poor law G u a r d i a n s , a g r e e d t h a t " f a r from e x a g g e r a t i n g , they knew t h i n g s were worse i n r e a l i t y " ( 2 2 5 ) . A Woman's I n f l u e n c e , w r i t t e n by a c t o r and c o m m e r c i a l l y s u c c e s s f u l f a r c e u r , G e r t r u d e J e n n i n g s , was s t a g e d by the AFL as p a r t of the WSPU's Women's E x h i b i t i o n a t P r i n c e ' s S k a t i n g R i n k i n May 1909. I t too i s c o n c e r n e d w i t h e x p o s i n g women's s u f f e r i n g and d e g r a d a t i o n , i n t h i s c a s e t h r o u g h an e x a m i n a t i o n of t h e p r a c t i c e of " i n d i r e c t i n f l u e n c e " , one of the i s s u e s s p e c i f i c a l l y a d d r e s s e d i n V o t e s f o r Women two y e a r s b e f o r e . The p l a y ' s s i n g l e male c h a r a c t e r , H e r b e r t L a wrence, i s a w e l l - t o - d o p l e a s a n t young man but as one of the p l a y ' s f e m i n i s t s s a y s to h i s w i f e , "You've got the money and the b r a i n s , he's got the v o t e " ( 7 0 ) . The w i f e , M a r g a r e t , s t a n d s as a r e p r e s e n t a t i v e of the f e m i n i s t s ' v e r s i o n of the womanly woman. She i s "a g r a v e , b e a u t i f u l woman of 27 or 28" and a l t h o u g h m a r r i e d w i t h c h i l d r e n n e v e r t h e l e s s r e m a i n s f i n a n c i a l l y i n d e p e n d e n t of her husband, e a r n i n g her own l i v i n g as a w r i t e r . She i s a l s o an a c t i v e member of the s u f f r a g e movement and i s s u p p o r t e d i n t h a t work by her s e c r e t a r y , "a p l e a s a n t , comely young woman, w i t h v e r y n e a t h a i r and a d e c i d e d manner." B o t h women r e s e n t t h e i r v o t e l e s s c o n d i t i o n , b e l i e v i n g i t h i n d e r s them from s e c u r i n g s o c i a l change which i n the p l a y m a n i f e s t s i t s e l f as an a t t e m p t to improve the a p p a l l i n g w o r k i n g c o n d i t i o n s of women a t a l o c a l f a c t o r y . C o n v e n t i o n a l m i d d l e - c l a s s f e m a l e i n t e r v e n t i o n i n the f o r m of i n d i v i d u a l p h i l a n t h r o p y i s r e j e c t e d as a s o l u t i o n - when her husband s u g g e s t s t h a t she send a cheque, M a r g a r e t r e s p o n d s t h a t money i s n ' t enough, " i t ' s t h e i r whole s o c i a l c o n d i t i o n t h a t ' s wrong" ( 6 9 ) . ^ 15 The p e r n i c i o u s e f f e c t of c h a r i t i e s upon the i m p u l s e f o r s o c i a l change i s r e c o u n t e d by R o b i n s : "A common ex c u s e f o r not d o i n g s o m e t h i n g f o r the Cause i s t h a t same h o n o u r a b l e -s o u n d i n g one of ' C h a r i t i e s . ' I am reminded i n t h i s c o n n e c t i o n of an A m e r i c a n w o r k i n g - g i r l who was s e n t to ask a c e r t a i n r i c h woman, of well-known l i b e r a l i t y , to h e l p the f u n d s of a T r a d e U n i o n to which the g i r l b e l o n g e d . The l a d y 88 Such sweated f a c t o r y w o r k e r s f a l l o u t s i d e the r e a c h of the ' s e p a r a t e s p h e r e s ' f o r m u l a t i o n which e x c l u d e d women from the w o r k f o r c e : ... What a r e t h e s e poor women to do u n l e s s t h e y work? T h i s one, A n n i e Matthews, has been d e s e r t e d by her husband, she b r i n g s up and s u p p o r t s h i s c h i l d r e n , by making s h i r t s at I d . an h o u r . L i z a Green works i n s i d e t h e f a c t o r y , s t a n d i n g f o r e i g h t h o u r s , though her baby i s o n l y a week o l d . Mary B a l l , w a g e - e a r n e r f o r t he h o u s e h o l d , husband d r i n k s - she does a man's work f o r t h e F a c t o r y a t H i l l R i s e , but beca u s e s h e ' s a woman she o n l y g e t s h a l f the wage. (71 ) T h i s might sound l i k e an i n s t a n c e of m i d d l e - c l a s s c o n d e s c e n s i o n t o the poor w i t h lower c l a s s women p e r c e i v e d as r e q u i r i n g r e s c u e f r o m i r r e s p o n s i b l e and b r u t i s h w o r k i n g • men. Yet the p l a y ' s p u r p o s e i n c i t i n g s uch i n s t a n c e s i s to a n a t o m i z e an economic and s o c i a l s y s t e m c a p a b l e of change -hence the need f o r the v o t e , w h i c h i s a d v o c a t e d f o r a l l o f f e r e d no o b j e c t i o n to t h e p r i n c i p l e of T r a d e U n i o n i s m , and she l i s t e n e d t o t h e s t o r y of the work t h i s p a r t i c u l a r body was d o i n g , k i n d l y enough - but t o a l l a p p e a l s f o r h e l p r e t u r n e d t h e one answer, t h a t she 'had her c h a r i t i e s ' - her W o r k i n g - G i r l s ' C l u b s , her F r i e n d l y and Rescue S o c i e t i e s , and the r e s t - t i l l a t l a s t the g i r l , h e a r t - s i c k a t her f a i l u r e , b u r s t out w i t h : 'Don't you see what we a r e t r y i n g to do i s to g et r i d of t h e . n e e d of your c h a r i t y ? ' 'But no!' the w o r k i n g - g i r l s a i d , i n t e l l i n g a b out the i n t e r v i e w , ' t h e r e ' s l o t s l i k e h e r . They've g o t the c h a r i t y - h a b i t . I t i s the  s t u f f t h a t sends 'em to s l e e p ! ' " (Way S t a t i o n s 6 8 ) . 89 women. Even the h a r d - p r e s s e d Mary B a l l c o l l e c t s s i g n a t u r e s i n her n e i g h b o u r h o o d f o r a s u f f r a g e p e t i t i o n and a s s e r t s , " i t ' s not men as can h e l p us any more, i t ' s women - i t ' s o u r s e l v e s , and t h a t ' s the t r u t h " ( 7 2 ) . A n o t h e r v i s i t o r t o t h e house, Mrs. P e r r y , "a p r e t t y b a b y i s h l i t t l e woman of t h i r t y - f i v e , " w i t h "no s e t t l e d home t o go t o , no c h i l d r e n to c a r e f o r " demurs, a d v i s i n g M a r g a r e t t o "coax her husband i n t o h e l p i n g h e r " (71) w i t h her c a u s e s . When M a r g a r e t d e c l i n e s to use su c h means, Mrs. P e r r y d e c i d e s to a t t e m p t the t a s k h e r s e l f . In p r e p a r a t i o n she "powders her nose, and p u t s her h a i r s t r a i g h t , makes a f a c e at the do o r , s i t s by t a b l e , l e a n s her head on her hands, p r e t e n d s to c r y " ( 7 2 ) . Of c o u r s e her t e c h n i q u e works, and M a r g a r e t ' s husband a g r e e s to a p p r o a c h h i s Member of P a r l i a m e n t r e g a r d i n g w o r k i n g c o n d i t i o n s a t the f a c t o r y u n t i l , t h a t i s , Mrs. P e r r y d i s c o v e r s t h a t her income i s i n v e s t e d i n the v e r y f a c t o r y i n q u e s t i o n . U n l i k e T r e n c h i n Shaw's Widowers' Houses, Mrs. P e r r y i s not i n i t i a l l y o u t r a g e d t h a t her money i s i n v e s t e d i n a m o r a l l y r e p r e h e n s i b l e c o n c e r n . I n s t e a d , a g r e e i n g w i t h Lawrence t h a t " i f you s t a r t monkeying w i t h wages, s h a r e s go down" (73) she ur g e s him i n her own s e l f - i n t e r e s t to " a b s o l u t e s i l e n c e " and i n a c t i o n . A Woman's I n f l u e n c e i s meant to s e r v e as a d e m o n s t r a t i o n of the p e r n i c i o u s e f f e c t s of i n d i r e c t i n f l u e n c e - t o expos e , i n the words of the V o t e s f o r Women r e v i e w e r , i t s "naked h y p o c r i s y " (20 May 1909 724)) - and to a r g u e f o r a d i f f e r e n t , more a c c o u n t a b l e form o f f e m a l e p o l i t i c a l i n v o l v e m e n t : . . . t h e s i n and m i s e r y t h a t l i e u n d e r -n e a t h i t a l l , t h e h e l p l e s s n e s s o f Woman u s i n g her one weapon, sometimes b e a u t i f u l l y , some-t i m e s m e r e l y f r i v o l o u s l y ( l i k e t o - d a y ) , some-t i m e s w i t h d e g r a d a t i o n , but a l w a y s - a l w a y s the same weapon. Ah, i f you men would o n l y g i v e us a n o t h e r one, t h e use o f our i n t e l l i g e n c e , so t h a t we c o u l d r e a l i s e t h a t we a r e r e a s o n a b l e c r e a t u r e s , f i t t o be h e a r d e q u a l l y w i t h man, not p a r a s i t e s . ( 7 4 ) The husband l e a r n s t h e e r r o r o f h i s ways and a g r e e s t o h e l p t h e Woman's Movement, t h e p l a y e n d i n g w i t h a c o n v e n t i o n a l p l e a f o r men and women t o work t o g e t h e r . Yet i t i s p e r h a p s c u r i o u s t h a t a p l a y t h a t p r o v e d q u i t e p o p u l a r w i t h s u f f r a g e a u d i e n c e s , s h o u l d c o n c l u d e , d e s p i t e Mary B a l l ' s c l a i m t h a t women must h e l p t h e m s e l v e s , by s u g g e s t i n g t h a t women must a p p e a l t o men f o r what t h e y l a c k , even p r e s u m a b l y t h e i r i n t e l l i g e n c e . G e r t r u d e Vaughan's The Woman w i t h t h e Pack p r o v e s s o m e t h i n g o f a g e n e r i c e x p e r i m e n t , c o m b i n i n g t h e e m o t i v e f o r c e o f su c h t o p i c a l r e a l i s m w i t h t h e u n i v e r s a l i t y o f a l l e g o r y - b o r r o w i n g , i n f a c t , a t e c h n i q u e f a m i l i a r t o i t s a u d i e n c e s from t h e movement's p a g e a n t s and p a r a d e s . D e s c r i b e d as "A S k e t c h i n f o u r s c e n e s and two t a b l e a u x , " the 91 p i e c e was p e r f o r m e d on 8 and 9 December 1911 by t h e AFL as p a r t o f a WSPU C h r i s t m a s f e t e . The p l a y , which t h e r e v i e w e r f o r V o t e s f o r Women m a i n t a i n e d might have been c a l l e d "The Making of a S u f f r a g e t t e " (5 15 Dec 1911 1 7 5 ) , a l t h o u g h C l a i r e H i r s c h f i e l d o b j e c t s t h a t i t i s " g u i l t y o f r h e t o r i c a l o v e r k i l l " ( 4 ) , c o n c e r n s an u p p e r - c l a s s young woman who b a l k s a t t h e u s e l e s s n e s s o f her l i f e which i s hemmed i n a t e v e r y t u r n by c o n v e n t i o n a l views o f a p p r o p r i a t e womanly b e h a v i o u r . P h i l i p p a Tempest c a n n o t t a k e a d e g r e e a t O x f o r d a l t h o u g h she p a s s e s the same exams as her b r o t h e r nor can she p r a c t i s e a t t h e Bar i f she p u r s u e s her l o n g i n g t o s t u d y law. I n s t e a d she i s e x p e c t e d t o marry a man who " h a s n ' t a s i n g l e m e n t a l m u s c l e i n h i s whole c o m p o s i t i o n " ( 4 1 ) . O b j e c t i n g t h a t she " s h a l l have to p r o m i s e to obey him ... and he might not 16 a l w a y s be r i g h t " (32) she r e f u s e s t h e match. In t h e p l a y ' s s e c o n d a c t Vaughan p o r t r a y s an extreme i n s t a n c e o f e x p l o i t a t i o n , t h a t of a mother and her c h i l d r e n f o r c e d to make match-boxes a t home f o r l e s s t h an s u b s i s t e n c e wages. Such "home-work," as i t was e u p h e m i s t i c a l l y c a l l e d , i s d e s c r i b e d by C l e m e n t i n e B l a c k i n Sweated I n d u s t r y and the Minimum Wage, where she r e c o u n t s i n e x c r u c i a t i n g d e t a i l t h e 16 In t h i s The Woman w i t h the Pack p r e - d a t e s a c o n t r o v e r s y w h i c h e r u p t e d i n J a n u a r y 1912 when two s u f f r a g e s u p p o r t e r s p r o p o s e d t o d e l e t e t h e p r o m i s e " t o obey" from t h e i r m a r r i a g e s e r v i c e . Debate ensued as t o t h e l e g a l i t y o f s u c h a p r o c e e d i n g and t h e c o u p l e u l t i m a t e l y c a p i t u l a t e d , a l l o w i n g t h e c l e r g y m a n t o i n c l u d e the o f f e n d i n g p h r a s e a l t h o u g h the b r i d e a f t e r w a r d s d e n i e d r e p e a t i n g i t ( s e e t h e D a i l y M a i l 12 Jan 1912 and t h e D a i l y C h r o n i c l e 15 Jan 1912 i n v o l 16 of t h e A r n c l i f f e - S e n n e t t P a p e r s ) . e l a b o r a t e p r o c e d u r e s t h a t had t o be gone t h r o u g h 144 t i m e s t o p r o d u c e 2 - l / 4 d of income ( 5 ) . W h i l e t h e y a r e engaged i n su c h d e b i l i t a t i n g work a t t h e o p e n i n g of Vaughan's s e c o n d s c e n e , B i l l H i g g s , t h e drunken husband, e n t e r s and t a k e s t h e f a m i l y ' s l a s t h a l f p e n n y , and t h e n b e c a u s e t h e r e i s no su p p e r on the t a b l e punches h i s w i f e . He i s i n t e r r u p t e d by P h i l i p p a Tempest who r u s h e s i n as i f t o h i t him. B a c k i n g away, he j u s t i f i e s h i s a c t i o n s , c l a i m i n g " I ' v e t h e r i g h t t o ; t h e law's on my s i d e " ( 5 9 ) . A l s o l o d g i n g w i t h H i g g s i s a young u n m a r r i e d woman b e i n g l u r e d i n t o p r o s t i t u t i o n by an employer who pays her l e s s than s t a r v a t i o n wages. In t h e p l a y ' s o r i g i n a l v e r s i o n , s e l e c t i o n s of which were p u b l i s h e d i n V o t e s f o r Women, t h e employe r s u c c e e d s ; i n t h e p u b l i s h e d t e x t , however, t h e young woman r e s i s t s . Vaughan seems t o have r e w r i t t e n t h e sc e n e i n o r d e r to a v o i d i m p l y i n g t h a t a l l s t a r v e d w o r k i n g women a r e e v e n t u a l l y d r i v e n to s e l l t h e i r b o d i e s . Of c o u r s e t h i s "poor g i r l " i s o n l y r e s c u e d from p r o s t i t u t i o n by Vaughan's w e l l -t o - d o h e r o i n e who, when c o n f r o n t e d w i t h t h e s c e n e , e x c l a i m s , " I won't h e s i t a t e any l o n g e r ! I see i t a l l now. I t ' s f o r t h i s t h a t women a r e f i g h t i n g . T h i s i s why t h e y go to p r i s o n . Something must be done" ( 7 1 ) . Tempest i m m e d i a t e l y r u s h e s out t o j o i n a S u f f r a g e t t e r a i d on P a r l i a m e n t S q u a r e . In the' f i n a l s c e n e o f t h e p l a y we l e a r n t h a t she has been i m p r i s o n e d as a r e s u l t o f t h a t march and made t o endure f o r c i b l e f e e d i n g . T h i s method o f d e a l i n g w i t h women who used the hunger s t r i k e to p r o t e s t t h e i r t r e a t m e n t i n g a o l was i n t r o d u c e d i n September 1909 as a means of p r e v e n t i n g t h e e a r l y t e r m i n a t i o n o f s e n t e n c e s ( t h e government u n w i l l i n g to have m a r t y r s on i t s hands, had been r e l e a s i n g hunger s t r i k e r s when t h e y grew s e r i o u s l y weak). S y l v i a P a n k h u r s t was one of t h o s e t o s u f f e r f o r c i b l e f e e d i n g , and has c a p t u r e d i t s i n d i g n i t i e s i n a p a s s a g e t h a t makes p l a i n t h e s e x u a l n a t u r e of t h e v i o l e n c e o f f e r e d . The p r o c e s s , which 17 In the same s c e n e , P h i l i p p a Tempest a l s o makes a p l e a f o r consumer a c t i v i s m : "The p e o p l e I blame a r e t h e p e o p l e who pay s u c h w r e t c h e d wages, and t h o s e who w i l l have th e m i s e r a b l e sweated t h i n g s F a n c h e t t e made" ( 6 7 ) . In t h i s she e c h o e s the Women's C o - o p e r a t i v e G u i l d who i n t h e p r e v i o u s decade had begun campaigns t o e n c o u r a g e consumers t o a v o i d sweated goods ( L i d d i n g t o n 4 1 ) . I t was an i s s u e a l s o t a k e n up i n E d i t h L y t t e l t o n ' s t h r e e - a c t p l a y , Warp and Woof, Camden T h e a t r e , 6 June 1904, p r o d u c e d by Mrs. P a t r i c k C a m p b e l l who t o o k the l e a d r o l e as T h e o d o s i a Heming, a sweated s e a m s t r e s s . At t h e p l a y ' s c l i m a x , Heming b e r a t e s a group o f s o c i e t y l a d i e s whose u n r e a s o n a b l e demands f o r b a l l - g o w n s e x a c e r b a t e s a p p a l l i n g w o r k i n g c o n d i t i o n s : "We c o u l d do the work i f you gave us t i m e . But h e r e ' s her l a d y s h i p a n g r y b e c a u s e we're b e h i n d w i t h t h e gown. When d i d she o r d e r i t ? O n l y t h i s m o r n i n g . You d o n ' t know what t h a t means, you l a d i e s . I don't b e l i e v e you want us t o work t i l l we're i l l and s i l l y and dazed - y o u ' r e t o o k i n d . But t h a t ' s what happens. You n e v e r see us - we're away u p s t a i r s i n t h e workrooms. T h e r e we a r e a l w a y s s t i t c h i n g - c o l d o f t e n , when y o u ' r e warm round your f i r e s - h o t , s t i f l i n g h o t , when y o u ' r e i n your c o o l rooms - s t i t c h i n g when y o u ' r e a l l f a s t a s l e e p . ... Oh, don't any of you f a n c y your gowns a r e made of s i l k and s a t i n o n l y - our l i f e and s t r e n g t h goes i n t o them t o o " ( 1 1 3 - 4 ) . would have been f a m i l i a r to t h e p l a y ' s i n t e n d e d s p e c t a t o r and h e l p e d shape t h e i r r e s p o n s e to Vaughan's a l l u s i o n s , i b e s t c o n v e y e d t o c o n t e m p o r a r y r e a d e r s by c i t i n g P a n k h u r s t a c c o u n t i n d e t a i l : [ S i x w a r d r e s s e s ] f l u n g me on my back on t h e bed, and h e l d me down f i r m l y by s h o u l d e r s and w r i s t s , h i p s , knees and a n k l e s . Then t h e d o c t o r s came s t e a l i n g i n . Someone s e i z e d me by t h e head and t h r u s t a s h e e t under my c h i n . My eyes were s h u t . I s e t my t e e t h and t i g h t e n e d my l i p s o v e r them w i t h a l l my s t r e n g t h . A man's hands were t r y i n g to f o r c e open my mouth; my b r e a t h was coming so f a s t t h a t I f e l t as though I s h o u l d s u f f o c a t e . H i s f i n g e r s were s t r i v i n g t o p u l l my l i p s a p a r t - g e t t i n g i n s i d e . I f e l t , them and a s t e e l i n s t r u m e n t p r e s s i n g round my gums, f e e l i n g f o r gaps i n my t e e t h . I was t r y i n g t o j e r k my head away, t r y i n g to wrench i t f r e e . Two o f them were h o l d i n g i t , two of them d r a g g i n g a t my mouth. ... A s t e e l i n s t r u m e n t p r e s s e d my gums, c u t t i n g i n t o the f l e s h . I b r a c e d m y s e l f to r e s i s t the t e r r i b l e agony. I wrenched my head f r e e . A g a i n t h e y g r a s p e d me. A g a i n t h e s t r u g g l e . A g a i n the s t e e l c u t t i n g i t s way i n , though I s t r a i n e d my f o r c e a g a i n s t i t . Then s o m e t h i n g g r a d u a l l y f o r c e d my jaws a p a r t as a screw was t u r n e d ; t h e p a i n was l i k e h a v i n g t h e t e e t h drawn. They were t r y i n g t o get t h e tube down my t h r o a t . I was s t r u g g l i n g madly to s t i f f e n my m u s c l e s and c l o s e my t h r o a t . They got i t down, I s u p p o s e , though I was u n c o n s c i o u s of a n y t h i n g then save a mad r e v o l t of s t r u g g l i n g , f o r t h e y s a i d a t l a s t : ' T h a t ' s a l l ! ' and I v o m i t e d as the tube came up. (443) A l t h o u g h f o r c i b l e f e e d i n g was condemned by many as c r u e l and b r u t a l t o r t u r e , the government d i d not d e s i s t i n i t s use. In the p r o t e s t i c o n o g r a p h y of t h e p e r i o d the p r a c t i c e became the s u b j e c t o f a famous WSPU p o s t e r by A. P a t r i o t ( A l f r e d P e a r s e ) e n t i t l e d the "Modern I n q u i s i t i o n . " P u b l i s h e d i n J a n u a r y 1910 t o c o i n c i d e w i t h t h e G e n e r a l E l e c t i o n , i t p o r t r a y s a v i c t i m b e i n g f o r c i b l y r e s t r a i n e d by f o u r women and one man w h i l e a n o t h e r man f e e d s her t h r o u g h a tube i n s e r t e d i n t o her nos e . F o r c i b l e f e e d i n g was not so g r a p h i c a l l y d e p i c t e d i n s u f f r a g e drama; p e r h a p s i t was f e l t t h a t too r e a l i s t i c a r e - c r e a t i o n of t h e p r a c t i c e on s t a g e would be beyond the a c c e p t a b l e bounds of E d w a r d i a n t h e a t r i c a l decorum. Whatever t h e r e a s o n , P h i l i p p a Tempest i s f o r c i b l y f e d o f f - s t a g e between the p l a y ' s s c e n e s . L i k e many of i t s a c t u a l s u f f e r e r s (some of whom would most l i k e l y have been p r e s e n t a t t h e p l a y ' s p e r f o r m a n c e ) i t i s a t o r t u r e she i s w i l l i n g t o endure f o r "a f u t u r e w i t h no woman o v e r b u r d e n e d , no man c r u e l , no c h i l d unhappy" ( 5 5 ) . I t i s q u i t e c l e a r l y a f u t u r e c h a r a c t e r i z e d by women's and c h i l d r e n ' s r e l e a s e from male o p p r e s s i o n . The a l l e g o r i c a l f i g u r e of weighed-down but r e s i l i e n t Womanhood who g i v e s t h p l a y i t s t i t l e , and who was d e s c r i b e d by V o t e s f o r Women as " t h e i n c a r n a t i o n of the woman's movement" (5 31 May 1912 5 6 1 ) , r e s p o n d s , "0, God of B a t t l e s ! S t e e l my s o l d i e r s ' h e a r t s " ( 5 6 ) . The p l a y c o n c l u d e s w i t h a t a b l e a u o f P h i l i p p a Tempest d r e s s e d as J e a n of A r c s u r r o u n d e d by a group of d a n c i n g and s i n g i n g c h i l d r e n . Men a r e e n t i r e l y a b s e n t from t h i s f i n a l s c e n e of c e l e b r a t i o n . I f s u f f r a g e 'drama' moved a u d i e n c e s by g r i m p o r t r a y a l s o f o p p r e s s e d womanhood, s u f f r a g e comedy s e t out to p u n c t u r e the arguments of a n t i - s u f f r a g e o p p o n e n t s . I t s weapon was e x u b e r a n t s a t i r e d i r e c t e d a t gender s t e r e o t y p e s , o f t e n o p e r a t i n g t h r o u g h s e x - r o l e r e v e r s a l s . The b e s t known of t h e s e p l a y s - i n d e e d the most f a m i l i a r p i e c e i n the s u f f r a g r e p e r t o i r e - i s How the Vote was Won. O r i g i n a l l y a s h o r t s t o r y by C i c e l y H a m i l t o n ( p u b l i s h e d by the WWSL i n 1909) i t was a d a p t e d f o r the s t a g e by H a m i l t o n h e r s e l f i n c o l l a b o r a t i o n w i t h C h r i s t o p h e r S t . John ( C h r i s t a b e l M a r s h a l ) , t r a n s l a t o r of H r o v s w i t h a and c o - e d i t o r w i t h E d i t h C r a i g of E l l e n T e r r y ' s Memoirs. I t was p e r f o r m e d a t London' R o y a l t y T h e a t r e on 13 A p r i l 1909. L i k e A r i s t o p h a n e s ' L y s i s t r a t a , t h e p l a y c o n c e r n s a women's s t r i k e . In k e e p i n g w i t h V i c t o r i a n p r u d e r y and f o l l o w i n g a l o n g t r a d i t i o n i n E n g l i s h f a r c e , w hich h a b i t u a l l y r e s i t u a t e d F r e n c h bedroom e n c o u n t e r s i n E n g l i s h d i n i n g or d r a w i n g rooms, i t a v o i d s the i s s u e of p h y s i c a l s e x . Women he r e do not deny s e x u a l f a v o u r s ; on the model of s t r i k i n g t r a d e u n i o n i s t s (an i n c r e a s i n g phenomenon i n t h i s p e r i o d of B r i t i s h h i s t o r y ) t h e y s i m p l y w i t h h o l d t h e i r l a b o u r . A c c e p t i n g the c o n v e n t i o n a l d i c t u m t h a t p l a c e s women i n the home t o be s u p p o r t e d t h e r e by men who a l o n e v e n t u r e i n t o t h e p u b l i c w o r l d of the w o r k - p l a c e , a l l women i n the p l a y throw up t h e i r j o b s and move i n t o the home o f t h e i r n e a r e s t male r e l a t i o n . The d e c i s i o n to f o c u s on women as p r o d u c t i v e members of t h e w o r k - f o r c e r a t h e r than as o b j e c t s o f male s e x u a l g r a t i f i c a t i o n was a l s o i n f l u e n c e d by the f e m i n i s t movement i t s e l f w h i c h was a t t e m p t i n g to br e a k away from a d e f i n i t i o n o f woman which s t r e s s e d f e m a l e s e x u a l i t y . In f a c t , t h e m a i n s t r e a m s u f f r a g e movement d i d as much as i t c o u l d t o d i s t a n c e i t s e l f from t h e "new woman" of the 1890s, a f i g u r e t a i n t e d w i t h the s u g g e s t i o n of s e x u a l p r o m i s c u i t y and compromised by a c t i o n s i n d i v i d u a l r a t h e r than c o l l e c t i v e ( i e . p o l i t i c a l ) i n n a t u r e ( T i c k n e r 183-84). How the Vote was Won f o c u s s e s on the p l i g h t of Hora c e C o l e , a l o w l y c l e r k who w i t h h i s w i f e , E t h e l , l i v e s i n a c h e a p l y f u r n i s h e d house i n B r i x t o n . An adamant a n t i -s u f f r a g i s t , H o r a c e i n s i s t s t h a t " E n g l i s h m e n c a n ' t be b u l l i e d " by s u f f r a g e t t e s . He i s made to see t h e e r r o r o f h i s ways, however, under the o n s l a u g h t of h i s f e m a l e r e l a t i o n s , a l l coming " t o demand s u p p o r t and the n e c e s s i t i e s of l i f e from t h e i r n e a r e s t male r e l a t i v e " ( 2 4 ) . The parade of women who pass t h r o u g h H o r a c e ' s house r e n d e r s r i d i c u l o u s a l i t e r a l r e a d i n g of t h e adage t h a t a l l women b e l o n g a t home. In f a c t , as a r e s u l t of the p l a y ' s a c t i o n t h e t e x t i s f i n a l l y r e p h r a s e d as the " a p p a l l i n g p r o b l e m of m a i n t a i n i n g m i l l i o n s of women i n i d l e n e s s " ( 2 4 ) . The f i r s t women w o r k e r s t o s t r i k e a r e t h e u s u a l l y " i n v i s i b l e " d o m e s t i c s e r v a n t s ; M a r t h a , who i s s u p p o s e d l y " s i m p l y d e v o t e d " to E t h e l , goes w i t h o u t s a y i n g good-bye w h i l e L i l y , "a shabby l i t t l e m a i d - o f - a l 1 - w o r k " who has no male r e l a t i o n s a t a l l l e a v e s H o r a c e ' s home to j o i n t h e l o n g l i n e f i l i n g i n t o the workhouse. As W i n n i f r e d , a WSPU spokesman s h o u t s , "we s h a l l h i t men as r a t e p a y e r s even when t h e y have e s c a p e d us as r e l a t i v e s ! " ( 2 4 ) . H o r a c e ' s home i s soon i n u n d a t e d . A gatha a r r i v e s f i r s t . "A w e a r y - l o o k i n g woman of about t h i r t y - f i v e , she wears the N a t i o n a l U n i o n c o l o u r s and i s d o w d i l y d r e s s e d " ( 2 7 ) . L i k e L e v e r i n g i n V o t e s f o r Women, she was r a i s e d as a l a d y w i t h no e d u c a t i o n t o f i t her f o r employment. At e i g h t e e n , however, she was f o r c e d to e a r n her own l i v i n g as a g o v e r n e s s , one of the few a c c e p t a b l e p r o f e s s i o n s f o r m i d d l e -c l a s s women. She l i k e n s her s i t u a t i o n to s l a v e r y , a metaphor p o p u l a r i n t h e f e m i n i s t w r i t i n g o f the p e r i o d to d e s c r i b e 18 women's p l a c e i n the s o c i a l and p o l i t i c a l h i e r a r c h y . 18 In an a r t i c l e on "The Wage of the M a r r i e d Woman" by J u l i e t t e H e a l e p u b l i s h e d i n V o t e s f o r Women, the metaphor i s used to d e s c r i b e the c o n d i t i o n of m a r r i e d women: "Yet the A g a t h a i s f o l l o w e d by M o l l y , "a g o o d - l o o k i n g g i r l of about twenty ... d r e s s e d i n w e l l - c u t , t a i l o r - m a d e c l o t h e s ... and c a r r y i n g some g o l f - c l u b s and a few b o o k s . " M o l l y i s the a u t h o r of a " s c a n d a l o u s " book a c c o r d i n g to H o r a c e , who d i s a p p r o v e s o f her w r i t i n g f o r money and who has c a l l e d her " s e x l e s s " b e c a u s e , a b l e to s u p p o r t h e r s e l f , she r e f u s e d to marry an " a w f u l l i t t l e b o u n d e r . " Madame C h r i s t i n e , " d r e s s e d s m a r t l y and t a s t e f u l l y , age about f o r t y , manners e l e g a n t , s m i l e c h a r m i n g , s p e e c h r e s o l u t e , " e n t e r s n e x t . A d i s t a n t r e l a t i o n of H o r a c e ' s , she r u n s "a p r o f i t a b l e d r e s s m a k i n g b u s i n e s s i n Hanover S q u a r e " ( 2 9 ) . Maudie S p a r k , the b l a c k sheep i n the f a m i l y , f o l l o w s , w e a r i n g "a hat of huge s i z e . " She has d i s g r a c e d h e r s e l f i n H o r a c e ' s eyes by p u r s u i n g a c a r e e r i n t h e m u s i c - h a l l s . D e s p i t e h i s d i s g u s t at her c h o i c e of c a r e e r s , however, Ho r a c e i s not p r e p a r e d t o have her f o r s a k e i t i n o r d e r to become y e t a n o t h e r d e p e n d e n t . As w i t h M o l l y , h i s s q u e a m i s h n e s s a t her c h o i c e of o c c u p a t i o n s i s s h a l l o w and h y p o c r i t i c a l ( H o r a c e i s a f t e r a l l q u i t e w i l l i n g to a t t e n d t h e t h e a t r e ) . H i s moral s e n s i b i l i t y i s s i m p l y s h o c k e d at the p r o s p e c t t h a t M a u d i e ' s c a r e e r o f f e r s her the p o s s i b i l i t y of a l e s s c o n s t r a i n e d way of l i f e . H o race would a g r e e w i t h K a t o , who m a i n t a i n s i n The Case of R e b e l l i o u s S usan, "What i s sauce f o r t h e goose w i l l n e v e r be sauce f o r p l a i n f a c t r e m a i n s t h a t the B r i t i s h m a r r i e d woman -g e n e r a l l y w i t h o u t " d o t " or dowry - i s i n the t e r r i b l e p o s i t i o n of s l a v i n g away her b e s t y e a r s w i t h o u t g e t t i n g a n y t h i n g but f o o d and s h e l t e r - the o l d p o s i t i o n of the neg r o s l a v e s of A m e r i c a " ( J a n u a r y 1908 4 8 ) . 100 t h e g a n d e r " ( 1 1 2 ) . The l a s t f e m a l e r e l a t i o n to put i n an a p p e a r a n c e i s Aunt L i z z i e , "a c o m f o r t a b l e , m i d d l e - a g e d body of a t y p e w e l l known t o t h o s e who l i v e i n t h e l e s s f a s h i o n a b l e q u a r t e r of B l o o m s b u r y . ... Her f e a t u r e s a r e homely, and her c l o t h e s about t h i r t y y e a r s b e h i n d the t i m e s " ( 3 0 ) . A m o t h e r l y t y p e who t e r r i f i e s H o r a c e , she s u p p o r t s h e r s e l f by k e e p i n g l o d g e r s , c o n s i d e r e d a t the time a s u i t a b l y "womanly" o c c u p a t i o n f o r l o w e r - m i d d l e and w o r k i n g c l a s s women. Word soon a r r i v e s t h a t the e n t i r e c o u n t r y i s i n c h a o s , and the p l a y ends as H o r a c e , decked i n v a r i o u s s u f f r a g e r i b b o n s , r u s h e s out to j o i n an a l l - m a l e r a l l y a d v o c a t i n g " V o t e s f o r Women" w h i l e the women " s t a y , q u i e t a t home" ( 2 3 ) . I t i s worth n o t i n g t h a t the most c o n f i d e n t and • f i n a n c i a l l y s u c c e s s f u l of H o r a c e ' s r e l a t i o n s a r e M o l l y and Madame C h r i s t i n e . B oth a r e s e l f - e m p l o y e d and b o t h , i t i s made c l e a r , make more money than H o r a c e . U n l i k e Mrs. Warren's p r o f e s s i o n i n Shaw's p l a y of the same name ( 1893; 1902') , t h e i r c a r e e r c h o i c e s a r e not s o c i a l l y c u l p a b l e ( o t h e r than t h a t as women the y s h o u l d not be w o r k i n g a t a l l ) and u n l i k e V i v i e Warren t h e i r r e j e c t i o n of m a r r i a g e f o r a l i f e of work and f e m a l e c o m p a n i o n s h i p i s not compromised by a g r i m and c h i l l y P u r i t a n i s m ; i n How the Vote Was Won t h e s e women a r e c e l e b r a t e d . The p o o r e s t and most down-trodden on t h e o t h e r hand, L i l y and A g a t h a , a r e d i r e c t l y d ependent upon male e m p l o y e r s f o r whom the y p e r f o r m c o n v e n t i o n a l l y f e m a l e t a s k s : they cook, c l e a n house and t e a c h t h e c h i l d r e n . The message of How t h e Vote was Won i s c l e a r enough. Any s i t u a t i o n f o r women wh i c h i n v o l v e s o v e r t dependence upon men i s not o n l y p s y c h o l o g i c a l l y d e b i l i t a t i n g , i t i s a l s o e c o n o m i c a l l y p r e c a r i o u s . When f i n a n c i a l l y p r e s s e d , H o r a c e i s much more w i l l i n g t o a d v o c a t e v o t e s f o r women than to p r o v i d e t h e i r s u p p o r t . ^ The p l a y p r o v e d p o p u l a r , many c r i t i c s f i n d i n g i t b o t h c l e v e r and w i t t y . A c c o r d i n g to the P a l l M a l l G a z e t t e f o r i n s t a n c e , " t h e s t o r y i s funny enough, but t h e way i n which i t i s t o l d i s f u n n i e r s t i l l ... The f a c t t h a t i t i s so a c u t e l y c o n t r o v e r s i a l i s not a t a l l a g a i n s t i t - i s , i n f a c t , a v i r t u e r a t h e r than a d e f e c t , f o r t h e T h e a t r e of I d e a s i s upon us" ( q u o t e d i n Spender 2 0 ) . T h i s i s not to say t h a t a l l r e v i e w e r s were s u r e o f i t s power to c o n v e r t . The St a g e n o t e d t h a t " t h e s e n t i m e n t s e x p r e s s e d i n How the Vote  was Won seemed to a r o u s e c o n f l i c t i n g f e e l i n g s , and p e r h a p s i t i s a l i t t l e r i s k y to p r e s e n t t h i s s k i t w i t h a p u r p o s e b e f o r e a mixed a u d i e n c e " (13 May 1909 2 0 ) . The E r a , on the o t h e r hand, w h i l e q u e s t i o n i n g the p r o b a b i l i t y of the p i e c e , 19 H a m i l t o n makes t h e same p o i n t i n M a r r i a g e as a T r a d e : " T h e o r e t i c a l l y he [ t h e head of the h o u s e h o l d ] might h o l d f a s t to the b e l i e f t h a t woman's s p h e r e was the home and n o t h i n g but the home. A c t u a l l y he might o b j e c t to the monetary o u t l a y i n c u r r e d i f t h a t b e l i e f was a c t e d upon. The f a t h e r of f i v e s t r a p p i n g g i r l s ( a l l hungry s e v e r a l t i m e s a d a y ) , who might or might not s u c c e e d i n i n d u c i n g f i v e d e s i r a b l e husbands to bear the expense of t h e i r s u p p o r t , would p r o b a b l y d i s c o v e r t h a t , even i f home was the s p h e r e of woman, t h e r e were t i m e s when she was b e t t e r out of i t " ( 1 2 6 ) . was w i l l i n g to acknowledge t h a t " i t c e r t a i n l y seems l i k e l y t o have the e f f e c t i n t e n d e d , " a l t h o u g h i t added an i n t e r e s t i n g c a v e a t : "whether the men would not p r e f e r to be d e s e r t e d by the f a i r sex r a t h e r than be g o v e r n e d by them i s a p r o b l e m y e t to be c o n s i d e r e d " (17 May 1909 2 1 ) . A n o t h e r s u c c e s s f u l s u f f r a g e comedy which s a t i r i z e d c o n v e n t i o n a l v i e w s of a p p r o p r i a t e f e m a l e b e h a v i o u r i s E v e l y n G l o v e r ' s A Chat w i t h Mrs. C h i c k y , f i r s t p e r f o r m e d a t the R e h e a r s a l T h e a t r e on F e b r u a r y 20, 1912. The p l a y c o n s i s t s of a " c o n v e r s a t i o n " between an a n t i - s u f f r a g i s t named Mrs. H o l b r o o k and her b r o t h e r ' s charwoman, Mrs. C h i c k y . W h i l e Mrs. C h i c k y c l e a n s a r o u n d h e r , Mrs. H o l b r o o k t r i e s to c o n v i n c e her to s i g n her a n t i - s u f f r a g e p e t i t i o n . I t becomes c l e a r , however, as the p l a y p r o g r e s s e s t h a t Mrs. C h i c k y i s i n f a c t a s u f f r a g e s u p p o r t e r who e a s i l y b e s t s Mrs. H o l b r o o k i n t h e i r d i s c u s s i o n . The p l a y i s i m p o r t a n t not o n l y b ecause i t s u c c e s s f u l l y s a t i r i z e s the a n t i - s u f f r a g i s t s , but because i t p r e s e n t s a p o r t r a i t of a w o r k i n g c l a s s woman who i s not a v i c t i m . D r a m a t i c a l l y , Mrs. C h i c k y h e r s e l f s p r i n g s from a l o n g l i n e of knowing s e r v a n t s t h a t s t r e t c h e s from Roman New Comedy to Shaw (and b e y o n d ) . She i s a l s o f a s h i o n e d as a 20 The p l a y was r e c e n t l y r e v i v e d i n London (March 1988) by the A n t o n i o P i n t o P l a y e r s . O t h e r s u f f r a g e p l a y s by E v e l y n G l o v e r i n c l u d e Showin' Samyel, a monologue i n which a w o r k i n g - c l a s s w i f e r e c o u n t s how she c o n v e r t e d her husband to the s u f f r a g e c a u s e s i m p l y by s i t t i n g q u i e t l y e x e r c i s i n g her " s i l e n t i n f l o o e n c e " and d o i n g n o t h i n g e l s e , and M i s s  A p p l e y a r d ' s Awakening ( R e h e a r s a l T h e a t r e , 20 June 1911) i n w h i c h M i s s A p p l e y a r d becomes a s u f f r a g e s u p p o r t e r as a r e s u l t of an i n t e r v i e w w i t h an a n t i - s u f f r a g i s t . 103 p o l i t i c a l r e s p o n s e t o c o m p l a i n t s t h a t the s u f f r a g e movement was a m i d d l e - c l a s s o r g a n i z a t i o n f u n c t i o n i n g i n the i n t e r e s t s of t h a t c l a s s o n l y . L i k e the working-woman i n V o t e s f o r Women, Mrs. C h i c k y p r e s e n t s the s u f f r a g e c a s e from the w o r k i n g c l a s s p e r s p e c t i v e . And the s t a g e b u s i n e s s goes a l o n g way to making her p o i n t . W h i l e a s e a t e d Mrs. H o l b r o o k a r t i c u l a t e s ( i n a n i c e r e v e r s a l of argum e n t s ) the e l i t i s t p o s i t i o n of the a n t i - s u f f r a g i s t s , Mrs. C h i c k y (a widow who works to s u p p o r t her f a m i l y ) c h a r s . The i r o n y of t h e i r r e s p e c t i v e p o s i t i o n s i s b r o u g h t home i n Mrs. C h i c k y ' s f i n a l i m p a s s i o n e d s p e e c h : The f i r s t time I 1 e a r d a l a d y a t a s t r e e t c o r n e r s a y i n ' as women o r t e r 'ave v o t e s , I l i s t e n s f o r a b i t 'an I s a y s "I'm on t h i s j o b ' I s a y s . I s a y s 'She knows. She's t a l k i n ' g o r s p e l . She a i n t s a t i n no d r o r i n ' - r o o m an' r e a d about us' I s a y s . 'She knows.' ... She d i d n ' t waste no time t e l l i n ' women out w o r k i n ' to keep body an' s o u l t o g e t h e r as t h e y o r t e r be queens of t h e i r 'omes! She d i d n ' t go t a l k i n ' about a man's 'ome f o r a l l the w o r l d as i f 'e o r t e r knock a t the door an' a r s k ' i s w i f e ' s l e a v e e v e r y time 'e wanted to get i n s i d e i t ! ... She d i d n ' t waste no time t e l l i n ' sweated women d r o v e on the s t r e e t s - women 'oo's 'usbands g i v e 'em a d r i b 'ere an' a drab t h e r e when t h e y ' r e s o b e r , an' the c h i l d r i n g o i n ' ' a l f - n a k e d - women 'oo's 'usbands t a k e up w i t h a n o t h e r woman, an' xI'm a f r a i d the l o r c a n ' t ' e l p you my good woman' s a y s 'Is Wushup, i n n i n e c a s e s o u t e r ten - women 'oo get d r o v e t o d e s p a i r w i t h f a c i n ' t h e i r t r o u b l e a l o n e w h i l e the man 'oo's b r o u g h t 'em to i t g e t s s c o t f r e e - women ' o o ' l l t a k e on t h e i r 'usband's j o b when 'e's i l l , t o keep the 'ome g o i n g ' , an' get e i g h t or t e n s h i l l i n s docked o f f f o r t h e same amount of work c o s the y a i n t men - she d i d n ' t waste no t i m e , I s a y , j o r i n ' t o women l i k e t h a t about the s p l e n d i d way t h e i r i n t ' r e s t s a r e p r o -t e c t e d a l r e a d y ! She knew. (112-3) And how d i d m i d d l e and u p p e r - c l a s s s u p p o r t e r s know about such m a t t e r s ? A n o t h e r s u f f r a g e comedy t a k e s as i t s s u b j e c t t h i s v e r y q u e s t i o n . 10 C l o w n i n g S t r e e t , w r i t t e n by Joan D u g d a l e , a S e c r e t a r y of the AFL, and p e r f o r m e d i n December 1913, examines the c o n s e q u e n c e s of Prime M i n i s t e r F o l j a m b e ' s p r o p o s e d Women's N a t i o n a l S e r v i c e B i l l . O p e r a t i n on the a s s u m p t i o n t h a t " t h e women a t the bottom of t h i s a g i t a t i o n a r e t h e u n m a r r i e d ones; t h o s e at a ' l o o s e end,'" F o l j a m b e ' s b i l l , worked out " s c i e n t i f i c a l l y " w i t h the h e l p o f t h e E u g e n i c s S o c i e t y , o b l i g a t e s e v e r y s i n g l e woman ove r t h e age of twenty-one to e n t e r i n t o some k i n d of employment As a t e s t c a s e t h e Prim e M i n i s t e r has s e n t h i s t h r e e a n t i -s u f f r a g e d a u g h t e r s out to work: I s a b e l l a , the e l d e s t , c o n f e s s e d she had a l w a y s 105 l o n g e d to be a p a r l o u r m a i d , and has gone o f f i n t h a t c a p a c i t y to one of t h e Labour Members; J u d i t h d e v e l o p e d a sudden p a s s i o n f o r l a u n d r y work, and i s i n the Snowdrop L a u n d r y a t S t o n e -henge; w h i l e E n i d i s m e a s u r i n g r i b b o n s b e h i n d the c o u n t e r i n B i rmingham. (181) In the c o u r s e of t h e i r b r i e f work e x p e r i e n c e s , a l l t h r e e a r e sweated, b u l l i e d and i n s u l t e d . They r e t u r n t o 10 C l o w n i n g S t r e e t ( i n a manner s i m i l a r to the women's a r r i v a l i n How  the Vote was Won) a r d e n t s u f f r a g e t t e s ready to engage i n the most m i l i t a n t a c t i v i t i e s i n o r d e r to s e c u r e the v o t e . E c h o i n g Mrs C h i c k y , J u d i t h demands of her f a t h e r , the PM, "What do you know about women's work and i t s c o n d i t i o n s ? . . . You know n o t h i n g about i t , so you have no b u s i n e s s to l e g i s l a t e f o r i t . Why, I know a t h o u s a n d t i m e s more than you now ... I'm t h a n k f u l I've had my week's m i s e r y . I t ' s opened my e y e s ; t a u g h t me what women have to go t h r o u g h when t h e y ' r e not s h e l t e r e d b e h i n d padded f r o n t d o o r s l i k e o u r s " ( 1 8 2 ) . T h r e a t e n e d w i t h the p r o s p e c t of h i s t h r e e d a u g h t e r s i n H o l l o w a y G a o l , the PM f i n a l l y a g r e e s to s u p p o r t a government measure e x t e n d i n g the f r a n c h i s e to women. L i k e many o t h e r s u f f r a g e c o m e d i e s , the p l a y s a t i r i z e s c o n v e n t i o n a l s e x - r o l e s t e r e o t y p e s . The men a r e p o r t r a y e d as c o m p l a c e n t , s e 1 f - c e n t e r e d p o l i t i c a l o p p o r t u n i s t s w i t h no r e a l b e l i e f i n the p o s i t i o n s t h e y a d o p t . As I s a b e l l a s a y s to her L a b o u r Member e m p l o y e r : " I t o l d him he ought to s t o p 106 t a l k i n g a b o u t S o c i a l Reform when he k e p t a s l a v e i n t h e h o u s e " ( 1 8 5 ) . T h i s p a r t i c u l a r comment r e f l e c t s t h e d i s e n c h a n t m e n t o f many f e m i n i s t s o f t h e p e r i o d ( p a r t i c u l a r l y t h e WSPU) w i t h t h e L a b o u r movement, wh i c h was d i v i d e d a t b e s t o v e r i t s s u p p o r t o f f e m a l e e n f r a n c h i s e m e n t . Of c o u r s e , the L i b e r a l s do not f a r e much b e t t e r : t h e Hon. G e o f f r e y de Haughten, one o f t h e PM's p r i v a t e s e c r e t a r i e s , " i s so s l o w and u n b u s i n e s s l i k e , t h a t i f one d i d not know t h a t h i s f a t h e r had won fame as t h e 'Tory Renegade P e e r ' one would wonder what q u a l i f i c a t i o n s had s e c u r e d him h i s p o s t " ( 1 7 3 - 4 ) . F e a t h e r s t o n e , th e PM's o t h e r s e c r e t a r y , g r u m b l e s t h a t h i s work might keep him f r o m h i s g o l f - g a m e . The women, on t h e o t h e r hand, once e x p o s e d t o t h e a p p a l l i n g w o r k i n g c o n d i t i o n s o f many o f t h e i r own sex, become a b s o l u t e l y c o mmitted t o t h e i r c a u s e . 10 C l o w n i n g S t r e e t r e v e a l s a c e r t a i n s i m i l a r i t y t o Shaw's p r o p a g a n d i s t p i e c e , P r e s s C u t t i n g s , w r i t t e n i n t h e s p r i n g o f 1909 f o r t h e Women's S u f f r a g e S o c i e t y , but banned by t h e C e n s o r on t h e b a s i s t h a t " G e n e r a l M i t c h e n e r " and "Prime M i n i s t e r B a l s q u i t h " were to o o b v i o u s l y m o d e l l e d upon K i t c h e n e r , B a l f o u r and A s q u i t h . Shaw's p l a y i s , l i k e 10  C l o w n i n g S t r e e t , s e t i n t h e rooms o f a h i g h government o f f i c i a l , t h e a c t i o n c o n s i s t i n g of t h e b e s i e g i n g of t h e b e l e a g u e r e d G e n e r a l and PM by a d e l e g a t i o n o f women. U n l i k e t h o s e i n 10 C l o w n i n g S t r e e t , however, t h e s e women a r e a n t i -s u f f r a g i s t s , and i n t r u e f a r c i c a l f a s h i o n , p a r o d i e s o f t h e t y p e . Mrs. Banger i n a r e v e r s a l o f a n t i - s u f f r a g e i m a g e r y i s the manly woman s e e k i n g t o do b a t t l e w i t h t h e s u f f r a g e t t e s , " t h o s e g e n t l e p r e t t y c r e a t u r e s who m e r e l y t a l k and c r o s s -examine m i n i s t e r s i n p o l i c e c o u r t s and go t o p r i s o n l i k e sheep, and s u f f e r and s a c r i f i c e t h e m s e l v e s . " C o n v e r s e l y , Lady C o r i n t h i a Fanshawe i s an e x a g g e r a t i o n o f t h e womanly woman s e e k i n g t o i n f l u e n c e men t h r o u g h t h e e x e r c i s e o f her f e m a l e w i l e s . U n l i k e women's s u f f r a g e drama, however, t h e p l a y i s as much c o n c e r n e d w i t h t h e i s s u e o f c o m p u l s o r y m i l i t a r y s e r v i c e and E n g l a n d ' s h y s t e r i a o v e r p o s s i b l e German i n v a s i o n , as i t i s w i t h f e m i n i s t q u e s t i o n s . In f a c t , i n k e e p i n g w i t h p o p u l a r d r a m a t i c c o n v e n t i o n , t h e p l a y ends w i t h t h e p r o s p e c t o f m a r r i a g e between i t s v a r i o u s main c h a r a c t e r s . T h i s i s c e r t a i n l y a d e p a r t u r e from women's p r o p a g a n d i s t t h e a t r e which c e l e b r a t e s women's s e l f -s u f f i c i e n c y and seems t o a d v o c a t e i n d e p e n d e n c e from an 21 i n s t i t u t i o n o f t e n a s s o c i a t e d w i t h s l a v e r y . The most c l e a r - c u t use o f s e x - r o l e r e v e r s a l i n s u f f r a g e comedy i s f o u n d i n t h e monologue, J i m ' s L e g , w r i t t e n by L.S. 22 P h i b b s and p u b l i s h e d i n J a n u a r y , 1911. A c o n t e m p o r a r y 21 H o l l e d g e a l s o n o t i c e s "a marked d i f f e r e n c e i n [Shaw's] t r e a t m e n t o f t h e s e x e s : t h e men a r e l u d i c r o u s b e c a u s e o f t h e i r p o l i t i c a l p r e j u d i c e s w h i l e t h e women a r e r i d i c u l e d f o r b e i n g u g l y , a g g r e s s i v e p r e d a t o r s " ( 6 8 ) . 22 O t h e r s u f f r a g e c o m e d i e s which r e l y on s e x - r o l e r e v e r s a l i n c l u d e M a s t e r ( G e r t r u d e M o u i l l o t ) and The B e t t e r H a l f ( A l i s o n G a r l a n d ) , w hich was p r o d u c e d a t t h e K i n g ' s Head, 6 A p r i l 1913 by t h e AFL. The l a t t e r p l a y , which t a k e s p l a c e i n a f i c t i v e c o u n t r y where women a l o n e g o v e r n and men engage i n s u f f r a g e a g i t a t i o n , i s d e s c r i b e d i n some d e t a i l i n C l a i r e 1 0 8 r e w o r k i n g of t h e f a r m e r and h i s w i f e f o l k - t a l e , i t t e l l s t h e sad s t o r y o f J i m , who h a v i n g l o s t h i s l e g i n a drunken a l t e r c a t i o n w i t h a motor bus, i s f o r c e d t o s t a y a t home d o i n g h i s w i f e ' s work w h i l e she t a k e s o v e r h i s j o b ( f o r l e s s pay) as a b o t t l e - w a s h e r a t a br e w e r y . H i s w i f e , i n what H o l l e d g e c o n s i d e r s t o be an u n i n t e n t i o n a l p a r o d y o f E a s t - E n d l i f e ( 6 2 ) , d e s c r i b e s i n g l e e f u l d e t a i l h i s b u m b l i n g a t t e m p t s a t t h e j o b ; she c o n c l u d e s , however, t h a t i t "...was t h e makin' of J i m . 'E began t o see f o r t h e f u s t t i m e i n ' i s l i f e what a woman's work meant, and by t h e t i m e 'e c o u l d go back to ' i s b o t t l e w a s h i n ' , 'e was a changed man. 'Andy 'e c o u l d n e v e r be, and sometimes I wis h e d 'e'd l o s t an arm i n s t e a d of a l e g - 'e'd 'ave m i s s e d i t l e s s . But one n i g h t 'e 'opped a l o n g o f me t o a S u f f e r a g e t t e m e e t i n g and comin' out 'e s a y s , s a y s 'e, " E s t h e r , ' s a y s 'e, xI'm a g o i n ' to be a S u f f e r a g e t t e m y s e l f " ( 1 7 1 ) . I f t h e p l a y c o n f i r m s a g e n d e r -s p e c i f i c d i v i s i o n o f work i t a l s o i n s i s t s , i n t h e f a c e o f a t r a d i t i o n w h i c h d i s m i s s e d i t as a n o n - o c c u p a t i o n , t h a t h o u s e k e e p i n g and c h i l d c a r e be g r a n t e d s t a t u s as l a b o u r , r e f l e c t i n g a p o s i t i o n a d o p t e d by a number o f s u f f r a g e s u p p o r t e r s . I n f a c t , a document e n t i t l e d "The women's C h a r t e r o f R i g h t s and L i b e r t i e s " (1910) by L i b e r a l s u f f r a g i s t Lady M c L a r e n , a d v o c a t e d under t h e h e a d i n g of " E a r n i n g s " t h a t : H i r s h f i e l d ' s a r t i c l e , E d w a r d i a n E n g l a n d . " S u f f r a g i s t as P l a y w r i g h t i n 109 (a) A w i f e who d e v o t e s h e r whole tim e t o h o u s e -k e e p i n g and t h e c a r e o f t h e c h i l d r e n s h a l l have a c l a i m upon h e r husband d u r i n g h i s l i f e , and upon h i s e s t a t e a f t e r h i s d e a t h , f o r a sum c a l c u l a t e d on a s c a l e n ot e x c e e d i n g t h e wages of a h o u s e k e e p e r i n h e r s t a t i o n o f l i f e , p r o -v i d e d she has not r e c e i v e d any o t h e r p e r s o n a l a l l o w a n c e . Such sum s h a l l not however e x c e e d one h a l f t h e amount s a v e d d u r i n g t h e m a r r i a g e , ( q u o t e d i n G a r n e r 116-7) A l t h o u g h , as G a r n e r p o i n t s o ut i n h i s s t u d y o f t h e s u f f r a g e movement, t h e c h a r t e r was ne v e r f o r m a l l y e n d o r s e d by any s u f f r a g e s o c i e t y , i t c e r t a i n l y a r o u s e d w i d e - s p r e a d d i s c u s s i o n among members o f v a r i o u s o r g a n i z a t i o n s ( 1 4 ) . And d e s p i t e t h e f a c t t h a t t h e WSPU e x e c u t i v e d i s m i s s e d t h e c h a r t e r b e c a u s e i t was not s p e c i f i c a l l y c o n c e r n e d w i t h f e m a l e e n f r a n c h i s e m e n t ( 5 2 ) , i t i s worth n o t i n g t h a t i t was the WSPU newspaper, V o t e s f o r Women, t h a t p u b l i s h e d J i m ' s Leg.. A n o t h e r p l a y w h i c h i n v e r t s c o n v e n t i o n a l e x p e c t a t i o n s o f p r o p e r male and f e m a l e e n d e a v o u r i s E d i t h , a o n e - a c t comedy by E l i z a b e t h B a k e r , which was i n c l u d e d as p a r t o f a m a t i n e e e n t e r t a i n m e n t h o s t e d by t h e WWSL a t t h e P r i n c e ' s T h e a t r e i n F e b r u a r y 1912. L i k e o t h e r more s u b s t a n t i a l works o f t h e p e r i o d i n c l u d i n g G r a n v i l l e B a r k e r ' s The Voysey I n h e r i t a n c e (1905) and P i n e r o ' s The T h u n d e r b o l t ( 1 9 0 8 ) , i t i s 110 c o n s t r u c t e d a r o u n d a d i s p u t e d i n h e r i t a n c e . T h i s p a r t i c u l a r comedy f o c u s s e s upon the w i l l o f a Mr. S t o t t , . a man who made h i s f o r t u n e i n t r a d e and m a i n t a i n e d h i s f a m i l y , much t o t h e i r h u m i l i a t i o n , i n a home above t h e shop. C o n t r a r y t o t h e f a m i l y ' s e x p e c t a t i o n t h a t t h e e s t a t e w i l l go t o t h e s o n , G e r a l d , who l o a t h e s t h e b u s i n e s s and i n t e n d s t o s e l l i t i m m e d i a t e l y , t h e d a u g h t e r , E d i t h , i s made "boss o f t h e whole show" ( 1 3 ) . The o n l y f a m i l y member not p r e s e n t when the w i l l i s r e a d , E d i t h l e f t t h e f a m i l y home y e a r s ago t o manage a s m a l l m i l l i n e r ' s shop whereupon e v e r y o n e e x c e p t t h e l a t e Mr. S t o t t l o s t t o u c h w i t h h e r . T h i s "mere g i r l " who " c o u l d n ' t be c l e v e r e r t h a n G e r a l d " soon a r r i v e s and p u t s p a i d t o s u c h c o n v e n t i o n a l u n d e r v a l u a t i o n s o f women, a l t h o u g h a t l e a s t one c r i t i c o b j e c t e d t o " t h e e a s y , and t h e r e f o r e , not o v e r -g l o r i o u s t r i u m p h " of E d i t h by means of " t h e c r u d e d e v i c e o f making the male c h a r a c t e r s o f t h e c a s t s u c h poor and commonplace c r e a t u r e s " ( S t a g e 15 Feb 1912 1 6 ) . "A handsome woman, young and q u i t e a t h e r e a s e , i n v e r y becoming m o u r n i n g , " (21) E d i t h i m m e d i a t e l y t a k e s c h a r g e , w i t h o u t however s a c r i f i c i n g any o f h e r w o m a n l i n e s s ; a c c o r d i n g to the E r a , " M i s s J e a n n e t t e S t e e r [ a s E d i t h ] ... was v e r y r e f i n e d and l a d y l i k e " (17 Feb 1912 1 3 ) . I t u n f o l d s t h a t she now owns a number o f s hops t h r o u g h o u t E n g l a n d and has major p l a n s t o b r i n g S t o t t ' s b u s i n e s s i n t o t h e t w e n t i e t h c e n t u r y : "The t r a d e i s a b i t low down a f t e r what I'm used t o , but i t ' s a l i t t l e g o l d mine i n i t s way, and you w a i t and see what I ' l l do w i t h i t . Poor dead Dad ... was g e t t i n g a b i t o l d f o r t h e t i m e s " ( 2 6 ) . L i k e Madame C h r i s t i n e i n How t h e Vote was Won E d i t h has a c h i e v e d f i n a n c i a l s u c c e s s and i n d e p e n d e n c e t h r o u g h s e l f - e m p l o y m e n t . I n t e r e s t i n g l y , b o t h women d e a l i n women's c l o t h i n g , which i n t h e c o n t e x t o f comedy p r o v i d e s them w i t h a means o f l i b e r a t i o n from o v e r t male c o n t r o l . In a major r e v e r s a l o f g e n d e r - d e f i n e d r o l e s , E d i t h becomes t h e f a m i l y b r e a d w i n n e r , upon whom mother, s i s t e r a n d ' a l s o b r o t h e r depend. A n o t h e r s u f f r a g e " c o m e d i e t t a " which p r e s e n t s women i n t r a d i t i o n a l l y m a l e - d o m i n a t e d p r o f e s s i o n s i s Lady G e r a l d i n e ' s  S p e ech, w r i t t e n by n o v e l i s t B e a t r i c e H a r r a d e n and p e r f o r m e d a t t h e WSPU's P r i n c e ' s S k a t i n g R i n k E x h i b i t i o n i n May 1909. By what amounts t o a pa r a d e of eminent women i n E d w a r d i a n g u i s e , Lady G e r a l d i n e ( o r i g i n a l l y a r a t h e r b r a i n l e s s a n t i -s u f f r a g i s t ) i s b r o u g h t round t o s u p p o r t i n g t h e s u f f r a g e c a u s e . H a v i n g u n w i t t i n g l y a g r e e d t o speak a t an a n t i -s u f f r a g e m e e t i n g , Lady G e r a l d i n e a p p e a l s t o t h e a r d e n t s u f f r a g e t t e , Dr. A l i c e Romney, t o w r i t e her s p e e c h : " I ' v e come t o my o l d s c h o o l chum. As i f b e i n g a S u f f r a g i s t or an A n t i - S u f f r a g i s t c o u l d make any d i f f e r e n c e t o t h a t e t e r n a l 2 3 f a c t " ( 5 3 ) . Dr. Romney a g r e e s t o h e l p , and w h i l e she i s a t work ( a l l t h e w h i l e r i d i c u l i n g t h e a n t i - s u f f r a g e arguments 23 Lady G e r a l d i n e ' s Speech i s a l s o r e p r o d u c e d i n Spender and Hayman's How t h e Vot e was Won and o t h e r S u f f r a g e t t e P l a y s ( 8 9 - 9 8 ) . U n f o r t u n a t e l y t h e v a l u e o f t h e c o l l e c t i o n i s undermined by c a s u a l e d i t i n g w hich i n t h e c a s e o f H a r r a d e n ' s p l a y , d e l e t e s t h e l a s t page o f t h e t e x t . she p r o v i d e s ) "an eminent a r t i s t , " a " P r o f e s s o r o f L i t e r a t u r e " and "a famous p i a n i s t " e n t e r , a l l women and a l l a c t i v e s u f f r a g e t t e s . C u r i o u s l y , t h e f i n a l v i s i t o r , d e s c r i b e d i n t h e d r a m a t i s p e r s o n a e as "a t y p i s t and s h o r t - h a n d w r i t e r " i s p r e s e n t e d o n l y as hawker o f t h e s u f f r a g e t t e newspaper, V o t e s f o r Women, w h i l e t h e maid r e m a i n s " i n v i s i b l e " d o m e s t i c h e l p . As s u c h , t h e p l a y does b e t r a y an e l e m e n t o f c l a s s b i a s , an a c c u s a t i o n o f t e n l e v e l l e d a t t h e WSPU. G a r d n e r s u g g e s t s t h a t t h i s might have been t h e r e a s o n f o r i t s l i m i t e d a p p e a l ; a l t h o u g h p o p u l a r w i t h i t s WSPU a u d i e n c e i t was n e v e r p e r f o r m e d f o r t h e N a t i o n a l U n i o n o f Women's S u f f r a g e S o c i e t i e s (NUWSS) f o r example, which eschewed t h e m i l i t a n t methods o f t h e s u f f r a g e t t e s ( H o l l e d g e 6 4 ) . Of c o u r s e as H o l l e d g e goes on t o p o i n t o u t , t h e AFL's d e c i s i o n not t o p e r f o r m t h i s p l a y a t NUWSS f u n c t i o n s may a l s o have been due to t h e f a c t t h a t t h e c h a r a c t e r s a r e o b v i o u s l y WSPU members ( 6 5 ) . In any c a s e Lady G e r a l d i n e ' s Speech was, l i k e E d i t h , p r i m a r i l y c o n c e r n e d w i t h e s t a b l i s h i n g new r o l e models f o r women w h i c h , by c e l e b r a t i n g p o t e n t i a l a c c o m p l i s h m e n t i n a r e a s of t r a d i t i o n a l male e n d e a v o u r , c h a l l e n g e d a d e f i n i t i o n o f t h e s e x e s w h i c h h a b i t u a l l y d i s c o u n t e d women. D e s p i t e t h e i r d i f f e r e n c e s i n s t r u c t u r e and s u b j e c t m a t t e r , t h e v a r i o u s s u f f r a g e p r o c e s s i o n s , p a g e a n t s , dramas and c o m e d i e s s h a r e a common and o v e r - r i d i n g c o n c e r n w i t h a l t e r i n g t h e i n f e r i o r s t a t u s o f women t h r o u g h b o t h s h o r t -term p o l i t i c a l and l o n g - t e r m s o c i a l change. P a r a d o x i c a l l y , t h e y s o u g h t f u l l e r i n c l u s i o n i n t h e i r c o u n t r y ' s p o l i t i c a l and s o c i a l s y s t e m as t h e most e f f e c t i v e means of d i s m a n t l i n g t h e s e x i s t a s p e c t s o f t h a t s y s t e m . The d r a m a t i c works o b v i o u s l y t a c k l e t h i s m a t t e r from d i f f e r i n g p e r s p e c t i v e s and by d i f f e r e n t t a c t i c s . The p a g e a n t s f o r i n s t a n c e use h i s t o r i c a l and a l l e g o r i c a l r e p r e s e n t a t i o n s b o t h t o c e l e b r a t e and t o r e c l a i m f o r t h e f e m i n i s t c a u s e women's p a s t a c h i e v e m e n t s , w h i l e t h e s o c i a l dramas a g i t a t e f o r r e f o r m t h r o u g h h a r s h p o r t r a y a l s o f women's c u r r e n t o p p r e s s i o n i n a r e a s of t o p i c a l c o n c e r n . The co m e d i e s i n t u r n e x p l o d e t h e arguments o f t h e o p p o s i t i o n w h i c h i n s i s t e d upon a narrow and s e v e r e l y c i r c u m s c r i b e d d e f i n i t i o n o f a p p r o p r i a t e f e m a l e c o n d u c t , o f f e r i n g i n t h e i r p l a c e an e x p a n s i v e i n t e r p r e t a t i o n of s u i t a b l e f e m a l e e n d e a v o u r . S u f f r a g e t h e a t r e s a t i s f i e d o t h e r more p r o f e s s i o n a l needs as w e l l , p r o v i d i n g new m a t e r i a l f o r f e m a l e a c t o r s f r u s t r a t e d by t h e p r e v a l e n t s t a g e c o n c e p t i o n o f women which t h e y c o n s i d e r e d t o be c o n v e n t i o n a l 24 and u n c o n v i n c i n g . I t a l s o p r o v i d e d an o p p o r t u n i t y f o r p r o f e s s i o n a l women w r i t e r s t o compose p l a y s f o r p e r f o r m a n c e s a f e f r o m t h e l i m i t i n g s t r i c t u r e s o f the c o m m e r c i a l t h e a t r e . 24 In f a c t , " t h a t t h e s t a g e c o n c e p t i o n o f women i s c o n v e n t i o n a l and i n a d e q u a t e " was a t o p i c s e t f o r d i s c u s s i o n a t one o f t h e AFL members' m e e t i n g s ( G a r d n e r i n t r o ) . A V o t e s  f o r Women r e v i e w e r a l s o o b j e c t e d t h a t " T h e r e i s not one p l a y on t h e London s t a g e a t t h e p r e s e n t t i m e which t a k e s any a c c o u n t o f women e x c e p t on t h e l e v e l of h o u s e k e e p i n g m a c h i n e s or b r i d g e p l a y e r s - the a c t u a l or p o t e n t i a l p r o p e r t y o f some man, v a l u a b l e or w o r t h l e s s as the c a s e may be" (8 Oct 1909; q u o t e d i n H o l l e d g e 7 0 ) . 114 In s u c h a s u p p o r t i v e e n v i r o n m e n t p l a y w r i g h t s f o u n d t h e m s e l v e s f r e e t o r e n e g o t i a t e d r a m a t i c forms and themes from a f e m i n i s t p e r s p e c t i v e . S t r e s s was p l a c e d upon t h e c o l l e c t i v e n a t u r e o f t h e e n t e r p r i s e and i f a p r i c e was e x a c t e d i n terms o f i n d i v i d u a l a g g r a n d i z e m e n t t h e reward p r o m i s e d to be g r e a t . In what might be c h a r a c t e r i z e d as the o v e r l y o p t i m i s t i c words o f E l i z a b e t h R o b i n s , ... i f no s i n g l e fame emerges t o - d a y as n o t a b l e as t h a t of c e r t a i n f i g u r e s t o w e r i n g out o f the p a s t , i n t e l l i g e n t women know t h a t t h e sum of f e m i n i n e a c h i e v e m e n t i s f o r t h e f i r s t t i m e a f a c t o r i n t h a t W e l t p o l i t i k w h i c h i s t h e s h a p i n g of p u b l i c o p i n i o n . We see c l e a r l y t h a t , w o r k i n g s h o u l d e r t o s h o u l d e r as we have n e v e r worked b e f o r e , women a r e l a y i n g the f o u n d a t i o n o f a power w h i c h i s t o change t h e c o u r s e o f h i s t o r y . (Way S t a t i o n s 73-74) C h a p t e r I I I C i c e l y H a m i l t o n ' s D i a n a o f Dobson's: " M a r r i a g e as a T r a d e " The w r i t i n g and p e r f o r m a n c e o f s u f f r a g e drama h e l d many a t t r a c t i o n s f o r women p l a y w r i g h t s and a c t o r s b ent on f r e e i n g t h e m s e l v e s from what t h e y c o n c e i v e d t o be t h e s t r a n g l e - h o l d o f male d e f i n i t i o n . T h a t s a i d , i t must be a c k n o w l e d g e d t h a t i t came a t a c o s t t h a t was i n one s e n s e q u i t e l i t e r a l . D e s p i t e t h e c o n c e r n of many of i t s p a r t i c i p a n t s w i t h t h e i r s e x ' s economic i n d e p e n d e n c e , s u f f r a g e t h e a t r e i t s e l f d i d not p r o v i d e a s u f f i c i e n t l y e s t a b l i s h e d b a s i s upon w h i c h f e m i n i s t p l a y w r i g h t s and a c t o r s c o u l d e a r n a l i v i n g . When a r t i s t s d o n a t e d t i m e and t a l e n t t o s u f f r a g e t h e a t r i c a l s , t h e i r c o n t r i b u t i o n s had t o be f i n a n c e d by work i n t h e c o m m e r c i a l t h e a t r e . Any a t t e m p t to c o n s t r u c t a more permanent f e m i n i s t t h e a t r e w i t h i n t h e b o u n d a r i e s o f t h e s u f f r a g e movement was i r o n i c a l l y p r e c l u d e d by the movement i t s e l f , w h i c h c o n s i d e r e d f e m i n i s t drama as an a d v e r t i s i n g and f u n d - r a i s i n g a d j u n c t to t h e more p r e s s i n g work f o r t h e v o t e , and a c c o r d i n g l y l i m i t e d p r o d u c t i o n o f t h e s e p l a y s t o o c c a s i o n a l and e r r a t i c s i n g l e p e r f o r m a n c e s . T h i s i s not t o say t h a t t h e i d e a of a women's t h e a t r e company was c o m p l e t e l y n e g l e c t e d . Prompted by t h e s u c c e s s o f i t s t h e a t r i c a l p r o d u c t i o n s but f r u s t r a t e d by t h e e p h e m e r a l n a t u r e o f such e n d e a v o u r s as w e l l as by t h e c o n t i n u e d l a c k of o p p o r t u n i t y f o r women w i t h i n the c o m m e r c i a l t h e a t r e , t h e head of t h e AFL p l a y d e p a r t m e n t , I n e z B e n s u s a n , e s t a b l i s h e d j u s t s u c h a Women's company i n 1913, i t s f i r s t s e a s o n f i n a n c e d by s h a r e s u b s c r i p t i o n s ( l i k e R o b i n s ' I b s e n s e r i e s ) p u r c h a s e d p r i m a r i l y by women engaged i n a l l a s p e c t s of t h e women's movement. The e x p e r i m e n t was a f i n a n c i a l and o r g a n i z a t i o n a l s u c c e s s . I n t e r e s t i n g l y , however, t h e p l a y s c h o s e n f o r p r e s e n t a t i o n were by men, B j o r n s o n s ' s A G a u n t l e t and B r i e u x ' s Woman on Her Own ( L a Femme S e u l e ) - an i r o n y t h a t r e s u l t e d a t l e a s t i n p a r t from t h e c o n c e n t r a t i o n by women p l a y w r i g h t s of t h e t i m e on " o n e - a c t , s m a l l c a s t p l a y s " ( H o l l e d g e 9 4 ) . And c e r t a i n l y t h e a e s t h e t i c l i m i t a t i o n s of s u f f r a g e drama a r e r e a d i l y a p p a r e n t ; b r e v i t y and c l a r i t y of meaning were v i r t u e s t o be e n c o u r a g e d a t t h e c o s t o f a more a m b i t i o u s and u l t i m a t e l y r i c h e r f u l l - l e n g t h drama. I t i s p a i n f u l l y a p p a r e n t t h a t r e j e c t i n g t h e b r o a d l y b ased c o m m e r c i a l t h e a t r e t o w r i t e and s t a g e p r o p a g a n d a p l a y s f o r the c o n v e r t e d i n v i t e d easy m a r g i n a l i z a t i o n . U n f o r t u n a t e l y , a women's t h e a t r e company t h a t would a l s o p r o d u c e women's p l a y s n e v e r became a r e a l i t y ; p e r h a p s B e n s u s a n ' s company would have gone on t o do so but i t s s e c o n d s e a s o n s c h e d u l e d f o r t h e f a l l o f 1914 d i d not m a t e r i a l i z e , f a l l i n g i n s t e a d an e a r l y c a s u a l t y o f t h e G r e a t War. T h r o u g h o u t the p e r i o d , women p l a y w r i g h t s who wanted t h e i r f u l l - l e n g t h works p r o d u c e d had t o seek venues w i t h i n t h e e x i s t i n g c o m m e r c i a l s y s t e m . Of c o u r s e w o r k i n g f o r London's West End t h e a t r e s was not w i t h o u t i t s p r o b l e m s . In a WSPU pamphlet of 1907 E l i z a b e t h R o b i n s d e s c r i b e d t h e d a n g e r s commonly a w a i t i n g women a u t h o r s who a t t e m p t e d to w r i t e f o r more w i d e - r a n g i n g a u d i e n c e s : L e t us remember i t i s o n l y y e s t e r d a y t h a t women i n any number began to w r i t e f o r t h e p u b l i c p r i n t s . But i n t a k i n g up t h e pen, what d i d t h i s new r e c r u i t c o n c e i v e t o be h e r t a s k ? To p r o c l a i m h er own or o t h e r women's a c t u a l t h o u g h t s and f e e l i n g s ? F a r from i t . Her t a s k , as she n a t u r a l l y and even i n e v i t a b l y c o n c e i v e d i t , was t o i m i t a t e as n e a r l y as p o s s i b l e the method, but above a l l t h e p o i n t o f vie w , of men. ... What she i s r e a l l y d o i n g i s h e r l e v e l b e s t t o p l a y t h e man's game, and s e e i n g how n e a r l y l i k e him she can do i t . So c o n s c i o u s i s she i t i s h i s game she i s t r y i n g her hand a t , t h a t she i s pr o n e t o borrow h i s v e r y name t o 118 s e t upon he r t i t l e - p a g e . (Way S t a t i o n s 5-6) R o b i n s i s w r i t i n g h e r e i n g e n e r a l t e r m s ; i n a l a t e r work, however, she p r o v i d e s a s p e c i f i c i n s t a n c e of s u c h "manly i m i t a t i o n " i n t h e p e r s o n of Mrs. C r a i g i e , a t u r n o f t h e c e n t u r y w r i t e r who p u b l i s h e d under the name of John O l i v e r Hobbes. C r a i g i e ' s f i r s t p l a y The Ambassador was s u c c e s s f u l l y s t a g e d by George A l e x a n d e r a t the S t . James's T h e a t r e i n 1898, and f o l l o w e d i n t u r n by t h r e e a d d i t i o n a l f u l l - l e n g t h p l a y s b e f o r e h e r e a r l y d e a t h i n 1906.''' A c c o r d i n g to R o b i n s , The p u b l i s h e d l i f e of t h e g i f t e d "John O l i v e r Hobbes" shows [an] i n a b i l i t y to see her own sex e x c e p t t h r o u g h th e e y es o f men, among the f i r s t t h r e e men o f her c h o i c e , B y r o n ! Her f l a t t e r y of men i s f l a g r a n t , by her own a c c o u n t . Her s u b s e r v i e n c e t o t h e i r c r i t i c i s m , and t h e i r d i r e c t i o n , beyond a doubt, c l i p p e d her b r i g h t ' wings and weighed down her o r i g i n a l i t y , no l e s s t h a n her n a t i v e w i t . ( A n c i l l a ' s S h a r e 101) 1 These p l a y s were The Wisdom of the Wise ( S t . James's, November 22, 1 9 0 0 ) , The B i s h o p ' s Move ( G a r r i c k , June 7, 1902) and The F l u t e o f Pan ( S h a f t e s b u r y , November 12, 1 9 04). In a d d i t i o n , h e r o n e - a c t p l a y , A R e p e n t a n c e , was p r o d u c e d a t t h e S t . James's on F e b r u a r y 28, 1899. None of t h e s e p l a y s e n j o y e d the c r i t i c a l a c c l a i m awarded The Ambassador. In f a c t The F l u t e of Pan c l o s e d a f t e r o n l y 12 p e r f o r m a n c e s and C r a i g i e was so i n c e n s e d by what she c o n s i d e r e d u n f a i r p r e s s n o t i c e s t h a t she a r r a n g e d a f r e e s i n g l e p e r f o r m a n c e a t which tim e she p o l l e d t h e a u d i e n c e on t h e i r r e a c t i o n to t h e p l a y . The v e r d i c t was 1200 a g a i n s t t h e p l a y ' s f i r s t n i g h t c o n d e m n a t i o n w i t h many a c c o m p a n y i n g s t a t e m e n t s of a p p r o v a l w h i l e 8 r e g i s t e r e d q u a l i f i e d d i s a p p r o v a l . I t s h o u l d be u n d e r s t o o d t h a t R o b i n s ' c r i t i c i s m stems as much from C r a i g i e ' s p o l i t i c a l v i e w s as from her l i t e r a r y works -the one of c o u r s e o b v i o u s l y i n f l u e n c i n g the o t h e r . C r a i g i e was an a n t i - s u f f r a g i s t who on one " u n f o r t u n a t e ' o c c a s i o n i n 1905 t o o k p a r t i n a d e b a t e on t h e a d v i s a b i l i t y of i n c l u d i n g women as j u r o r s . C r a i g i e a r g u e d a g a i n s t i n c l u s i o n , d e c l a r i n g t h a t t h e i r n a t u r e d i d not c o n t a i n a p r o p e r element of j u s t i c e , t h a t t h e y were by n a t u r e u n f a i r , t h o u g h t h e i r u n f a i r n e s s , i n some i n s t a n c e s , was a s o u r c e of f a s c i n a t i o n . Where would men g e t sympathy, she a s k e d , i f women were i m p a r t i a l ? E x p e r i e n c e showed t h a t women were not i n t e n d e d t o g o v e r n ; and a r t r i g h t l y r e p r e s e n t e d t h e woman i m p e r s o n a t i n g J u s t i c e as b e i n g b l i n d f o l d e d , b e cause a woman c o u l d n ot be t r u s t e d to see s t r a i g h t . ( L i f e of John  O l i v e r Hobbes 30) Such a p o s i t i o n would be anathema t o R o b i n s , whose own o p i n i o n of t h e s t a t e of B r i t a i n ' s j u d i c i a l s y s t e m i s r e g i s t e r e d i n V o t e s f o r Women. Such abasement of her own sex by a s i s t e r w r i t e r c o u l d o n l y be i n t e r p r e t e d by R o b i n s as " m a s c u l i n e , " t h e p r o d u c t of a woman overcome by male s e n s i b i l i t y . C r a i g i e ' s f a t e , as c h a r a c t e r i z e d by R o b i n s , was one t h a t a number of women p l a y w r i g h t s s t r u g g l e d c o n s c i o u s l y to 120 a v o i d . F o r e m o s t among t h e s e was C i c e l y H a m i l t o n , whose Pageant of G r e a t Women and How t h e Vote Was Won p r o v e d p o p u l a r i t e m s i n t h e s u f f r a g e r e p e r t o i r e . L i k e C r a i g i e (and 9 R o b i n s h e r s e l f ), H a m i l t o n c o n c e a l e d her sex when her f i r s t p l a y , "a somewhat gruesome o n e - a c t , " The S i x t h Commandment, was s t a g e d i n 1906, i t b e i n g c o n v e n t i o n a l wisdom t h a t p l a y s by women were more l i k e l y to r e c e i v e a bad p r e s s . And " c e r t a i n i t i s t h a t t h e one or two c r i t i c s who had d i s c o v e r e d t h a t C. H a m i l t o n s t o o d f o r a woman were the one or two c r i t i c s who d e a l t out h a r d measure to her p l a y l e t " ( L i f e E r r a n t 6 0 ) . N e v e r t h e l e s s , i n s u b s e q u e n t work H a m i l t o n made no e f f o r t to masquerade as a male, a s s e r t i n g i n her a u t o b i o g r a p h y t h a t " t h e change - i f change i t were - was b r o u g h t about r a p i d l y as an i n d i r e c t r e s u l t of the s u f f r a g e a g i t a t i o n " ( 6 1 ) . H a m i l t o n was, l i k e R o b i n s , a p r o m i n e n t p a r t i c i p a n t i n the s u f f r a g e movement. An e a r l y r e c r u i t of the WSPU, she l e f t t h a t o r g a n i z a t i o n i n 1907 as a r e s u l t of a d i s p u t e o v e r i n t e r n a l o r g a n i z a t i o n to become a member of the Women's Freedom League under the p r e s i d e n c y of C h a r l o t t e D e s p a r d . D e s p i t e her s i g n i f i c a n t c o n t r i b u t i o n to the c a u s e of f e m a l e e n f r a n c h i s e m e n t , however, H a m i l t o n c l a i m e d t o be m o t i v a t e d more by f e m i n i s t than s p e c i f i c a l l y s u f f r a g i s t c o n c e r n s : . . . I n e v e r a t t e m p t e d to d i s g u i s e the f a c t 2 R o b i n s p u b l i s h e d her f i r s t n o v e l s under th e name of C.E. Raymond and her f i r s t p l a y , A l a n ' s W i f e , was p r o d u c e d anonymously. t h a t I w a s n ' t w i l d l y i n t e r e s t e d i n v o t e s f o r a n y o n e , and . . . i f I w o r k e d f o r women's e n f r a n c h i s e m e n t ( a n d I d i d work q u i t e h a r d ) i t w a s n ' t b e c a u s e I hoped g r e a t t h i n g s f r o m c o u n t i n g f e m a l e n o s e s a t g e n e r a l e l e c t i o n s , b u t b e c a u s e t h e a g i t a t i o n f o r women's e n f r a n c h i s e m e n t must i n e v i t a b l y s h a k e and weaken t h e t r a d i t i o n o f t h e " n o r m a l w o m a n . ' The " n o r m a l woman' w i t h h e r " d e s t i n y ' o f m a r r i a g e and m o t h e r h o o d and h o u s e k e e p i n g , no i n t e r e s t o u t s i d e h e r home - - e s p e c i a l l y no i n t e r e s t i n t h e m a n ' s p r e s e r v e o f p o l i t i c s ! My p e r s o n a l r e v o l t was f e m i n i s t r a t h e r t h a n s u f f r a g i s t ; what I r e b e l l e d a t c h i e f l y was t h e d e p e n d e n c e i m p l i e d i n t h e i d e a o f ' d e s t i n e d ' m a r r i a g e , ' d e s t i n e d ' m o t h e r h o o d — t h e i d e n t i -f i c a t i o n o f s u c c e s s w i t h m a r r i a g e , o f f a i l u r e w i t h s p i n s t e r h o o d , t h e a r t i f i c i a l c o n c e n t r a t i o n o f t h e h o p e s o f g i r l h o o d on s e x u a l a t t r a c t i o n and m a t e r n i t y . . . ( L i f e E r r a n t 65) S u c h v i e w s d o m i n a t e H a m i l t o n ' s w o r k , f i n d i n g t h e i r most f o r c e f u l e x p r e s s i o n i n M a r r i a g e as a T r a d e ( 1 9 0 9 ) , a p i e c e o f p o l e m i c a l w r i t i n g w h i c h S h o w a l t e r d e s c r i b e s a s b e i n g "on t h e b r i n k o f a f e m i n i s t c r i t i c i s m " ( 2 2 5 ) . C u r i o u s l y , h o w e v e r , g i v e n H a m i l t o n ' s p o s i t i o n on t h e f e m i n i s t / s u f f r a g i s t d i v i d e , S h o w a l t e r c l a i m s t h a t "she 122 bogged down i n her e f f o r t s to c o n n e c t women's l i t e r a t u r e to the s p e c i f i c g o a l of t h e v o t e " ( 2 2 5 ) . As i t s t i t l e s u g g e s t s , M a r r i a g e as a T r a d e i s an a t t e m p t t o debunk t h e more r o m a n t i c c o n n o t a t i o n s o f t h a t i n s t i t u t i o n t h r o u g h an e x a m i n a t i o n o f i t s " t r a d e a s p e c t . " The work f o c u s e s upon the e x t e n t to w h i c h "'woman" i s a s o c i a l c o n s t r u c t , " t h e p r o d u c t of the c o n d i t i o n s imposed upon her by her s t a p l e i n d u s t r y " ( 1 7 ) : " V i c i o u s or v i r t u o u s , matron or o u t c a s t , she was made and not b o r n " ( 4 4 ) . I t examines t h e unhappy c o n s e q u e n c e s f o r women's m e n t a l and p h y s i c a l w e l l - b e i n g of t h e i r m a n i p u l a t i o n i n t o " t h e r e g u l a t i o n p a t t e r n o f w i f e h o o d " ( 4 5 ) , and c o n f i r m s the i d e o l o g y o f t h e s u f f r a g e movement i n i t s a s s e r t i o n t h a t " t h e human f e m a l e i s n o t e n t i r e l y composed of s e x " ( 1 0 2 ) . The book l a u n c h e s an a t t a c k upon the h y s t e r i z a t i o n of the fe m a l e body as M i c h e l F o u c a u l t would come to c h a r a c t e r i z e i t , condemning the a r t i f i c i a l r e d u c t i o n o f women to sex, and c e l e b r a t i n g c e l i b a c y and s p i n s t e r h o o d as a l t e r n a t i v e s to the s u b j u g a t i o n and dependency t h a t m a r r i a g e and motherhood e n t a i l e d . As one s p e c i f i c e l e m e n t i n her d i s c u s s i o n of M a r r i a g e  as a T r a d e , H a m i l t o n c o n s i d e r s women's p l a c e i n a r t and l i t e r a t u r e , a d o p t i n g much the same p o s i t i o n as R o b i n s . She a r g u e s t h a t A r t , as we know i t , i s a m a s c u l i n e p r o d u c t , wrought by t h e hands and c o n c e i v e d by the b r a i n s of men; t h e works of a r t t h a t have 123 f o r c e d t h e m s e l v e s i n t o t h e e n d u r i n g l i f e o f the w o r l d have been s h a p e d , w r i t t e n , b u i l d e d ( s i c ) , p a i n t e d by men. They have a c h i e v e d and we have i m i t a t e d ; on the whole, p i t i f u l l y . (107) I t i s H a m i l t o n ' s c o n t e n t i o n t h a t much of women's a r t i s " a r t i f i c i a l " , " not a r e p r e s e n t a t i o n of l i f e o r beauty seen by a woman's e y e s , but an a t t e m p t to r e n d e r l i f e or be a u t y as man d e s i r e s t h a t a woman s h o u l d see and r e n d e r i t . The a t t e m p t i s u n c o n s c i o u s , no doubt; but i t i s t h e r e -t h w a r t i n g , d e s t r o y i n g and a n n u l l i n g " ( 1 1 2 ) . H a m i l t o n m a i n t a i n s , however, t h a t a woman can a t l e a s t a t t e m p t to c o u n t e r s u c h t r a i n i n g a l b e i t a t g r e a t c o s t : "even i n the c o m p a r a t i v e l y few i n s t a n c e s where she r e c o g n i z e s what her t r a i n i n g has done f o r h e r , when she r e a l i s e s the poor t h i n g i t has made of h e r , and s e t s to work, d e l i b e r a t e l y and of f i r m r e s o l v e , t o c o u n t e r a c t i t s e f f e c t s upon her l i f e and c h a r a c t e r , i t may t a k e h e r t h e b e s t p a r t of a l i f e t i m e to s t r u g g l e f r e e o f h e r c h a i n s " ( 1 1 0 ) . Such was to be t h e p a t t e r n of H a m i l t o n ' s own l i f e . R e b e l l i n g a t a young age " a g a i n s t the c o m p u l s o r y n a t u r e of t he t r a d e o f m a r r i a g e " ( M a r r i a g e 55) and coming as she d i d from an i m p e c u n i o u s m i d d l e - c l a s s f a m i l y , H a m i l t o n was e a r l y c o n f r o n t e d w i t h t h e p r o s p e c t of h a v i n g to p r o v i d e f o r h e r s e l f . A l t h o u g h she i n i t i a l l y s t r u g g l e d w i t h a p u p i l -t e a c h e r ' s j o b i n t h e M i d l a n d s , she soon r e j e c t e d such 124 s u i t a b l e women's work i n f a v o u r of a new l i f e i n the t h e a t r e . F i n d i n g t h a t she d i d not c o n f o r m to the c o n v e n t i o n a l t y p e of f e m a l e b e a u t y d e f i n e d by a c t o r -managers, however - "My f a c e , u n f o r t u n a t e l y , was not of the ty p e t h a t i n d u c e s t h e a t r i c a l managers to o f f e r engagements on s i g h t " ( L i f e E r r a n t 32) - she was f o r c e d to e a r n her l i v i n g t o u r i n g t h e p r o v i n c e s w i t h s e c o n d - r a t e companies whose s t a p l e f a r e was melodrama, her meagre s a l a r y augmented by work as a hack j o u r n a l i s t . Her most s u c c e s s f u l s t a g e p e r f o r m a n c e was as Mrs. Knox i n Shaw's Fanny's F i r s t P l a y ( 1 9 1 1 ) , a p a r t t h a t came her way t h r o u g h her a c t i v i t i e s i n the s u f f r a g e movement. D u r i n g a r e h e a r s a l of Pageant of  G r e a t Women, H a m i l t o n was a p p a r e n t l y n o t i c e d by L i l l a h M c C a r t h y , who s u b s e q u e n t l y o f f e r e d her a p a r t i n her p r o d u c t i o n of Shaw's p i e c e ( w h i c h i n c i d e n t a l l y i n c l u d e s among i t s d r a m a t i s p e r s o n a e an a c t i v e s u f f r a g e t t e ) a t the L i t t l e T h e a t r e , where t h e p l a y went on to became "a t r u l y o b s t i n a t e s u c c e s s " ( L i f e E r r a n t 8 3 ) " ^ But i f H a m i l t o n 3 H a m i l t o n was a l s o thrown out of work on two o c c a s i o n s to be r e p l a c e d by a manager's m i s t r e s s : "no f a u l t was fo u n d w i t h t h e p l a y i n g of my p a r t , but i t was wanted f o r o t h e r t h a n p r o f e s s i o n a l r e a s o n s , and t h e r e f o r e I had to go." She goes on to e l a b o r a t e upon what she c a l l s " t h e i n t r u s i o n of the s e x - e l e m e n t i n t o t h e b u s i n e s s r e l a t i o n s o f men and women ...To a much g r e a t e r d e g r e e t h a n men, women a r e engaged by t h e i r e m p l o y e r s f o r r e a s o n s w h i c h have no c o n n e c t i o n w i t h f i t n e s s f o r t h e i r work; b e c a u s e t h e y have t h e r i g h t shape of nose, the r i g h t shade o f h a i r , or a p a r t i c u l a r l y p l e a s i n g s m i l e " ( L i f e E r r a n t 4 7 ) . 4 Fanny's F i r s t P l a y was among the most s u c c e s s f u l of Ed w a r d i a n p r o d u c t i o n s , r u n n i n g f o r 622 p e r f o r m a n c e s ( T r e w i n , E d w a r d i a n T h e a t r e 1 5 6 ) . r e a l i z e d t h e p a r t as a r e s u l t of her s u f f r a g e a c t i v i t i e s , t h e p l a y ' s two y e a r run had the e f f e c t of d r a s t i c a l l y c u r t a i l i n g s u c h a c t i v i t i e s : " a t the hour when m e e t i n g s u s u a l l y b e g i n I had t o be i n my d r e s s i n g - r o o m , making up to go on the s t a g e " ( L i f e E r r a n t 8 4 ) . U n f o r t u n a t e l y , H a m i l t o n ' s s t a g e s u c c e s s came a f t e r she had v i r t u a l l y g i v e n up p e r f o r m a n c e f o r c o m p o s i t i o n . A l t h o u g h she p r o f e s s e d to a g r o w i n g l i t e r a r y a m b i t i o n , she a l s o r e a l i z e d , l i k e many women a c t o r s of t h e p e r i o d , t h a t m i d d l e - a g e and a c t i n g were o f t e n i n c o m p a t i b l e , and as t h a t p a r t i c u l a r age a p p r o a c h e d , she t u r n e d to w r i t i n g f u l l - t i m e . ^ Her f i r s t a t t e m p t a t a f u l l - l e n g t h p l a y was D i a n a of Dobson's, a comedy about a sweated s h o p - a s s i s t a n t , "who, on the s t r e n g t h of a s m a l l l e g a c y , makes a C i n d e r e l l a - l i k e a p p e a r a n c e i n the w o r l d t h a t does not t o i l or s p i n " ( L i f e E r r a n t 6 1 ) . Her u n e x p e c t e d i n h e r i t a n c e a l l o w s her to l i v e as a woman of means f o r one b r i e f month a t a r e s o r t i n the Sw i s s A l p s , d u r i n g w h i c h tim e she i s wooed by bot h S i r J a b e z G r i n l e y , t h e owner of a c h a i n of d r a p e r s ' shops which c a t e r to t he low e r m i d d l e - c l a s s , and C a p t a i n V i c t o r B r e t h e r t o n , a n e ' e r - d o - w e l l who, f i n d i n g i t i m p o s s i b l e to l i v e "on a 5 In her a u t o b i o g r a p h y Lena A s h w e l l n o t e s t h a t " A l l the h e r o i n e s [ o f t h a t p e r i o d ] were young. H e r o e s might be any age, but t h e o l d e r women were m e r e l y b a c k g r o u n d s to the drama. Now t h a t i t i s not a l w a y s easy to d i s t i n g u i s h between a mother and d a u g h t e r , and women of s i x t y or more c a n , and do, l o o k h a l f t h e i r age, i t i s h a r d to b e l i e v e t h a t f o r t y was c o n s i d e r e d o l d , and t h a t 'too o l d at f o r t y , ' p r a c t i c a l l y a new c r y a b o u t men, had been f o r l o n g the s l o g a n f o r women" ( 8 1 ) . m i s e r a b l e s i x h u n d r e d pounds a y e a r " , i s e n c o u r a g e d to c o u r t D i a n a on t h e b a s i s of h e r s u p p o s e d f o r t u n e . She r e f u s e s the f o r m e r and b o t h r e j e c t s and i s r e j e c t e d by the l a t t e r when she d i s c l o s e s the t r u e s t a t e of her a f f a i r s . Her l e g a c y q u i c k l y d e p l e t e d , she r e t u r n s to E n g l a n d and a l i f e of i n c r e a s i n g d e s t i t u t i o n . F i n a l l y e v i c t e d from her l o d g i n g s , she i s f o r c e d t o haunt the Thames Embankment where she once more e n c o u n t e r s B r e t h e r t o n . S t ung by her t a u n t t h a t he would "throw up t h e sponge i n a week" ( 53 ) i f he had to e a r n h i s own l i v i n g w i t h o u t h e l p from f r i e n d s or r e l a t i o n s , he has a t t e m p t e d t o do j u s t t h a t w i t h a s i n g u l a r l a c k of s u c c e s s . C o n v i n c e d now t h a t h i s income i s not "a m i s e r a b l e p i t t a n c e " but r a t h e r enough f o r two, he p r o p o s e s a g a i n and D i a n a a c c e p t s . Upon i t s c o m p l e t i o n H a m i l t o n s e n t the m a n u s c r i p t to the Kingsway T h e a t r e , w h i c h under the management of Lena A s h w e l l ( a l s o an a c t i v e member of the AFL) had undergone a p i n k and w h i t e c h o c o l a t e - b o x t y p e of r e f u r b i s h m e n t r e m i n i s c e n t of Madame V e s t r i s ' e a r l i e r p r e t t i f i c a t i o n of the O l y m p i c . L i k e G r a n v i l l e B a r k e r a t t h e C o u r t , A s h w e l l was d e t e r m i n e d to e s t a b l i s h a t h e a t r e t h a t would p r o d u c e new p l a y s by p r o m i s i n g E n g l i s h p l a y w r i g h t s . D i a n a of Dobson's was the e l e v e n t h p l a y i n a p i l e of t w e n t y - f i v e t h a t Kingsway p l a y r e a d e r Edward K n o b l o c k was s c o u r i n g f o r p o s s i b l e p r o d u c t i o n . He r e a c t e d to the s c r i p t w i t h an e n t h u s i a s m - " N o t h i n g can compare w i t h the j o y of f i n d i n g a r e a l l y good, human, c r i s p , 127 amusing m a n u s c r i p t " (Round t h e Room 91) - t h a t A s h w e l l s h a r e d , and t h e p l a y was s i g n e d f o r a l m o s t immediate p r o d u c t i o n . I t was an a s t u t e b u s i n e s s d e c i s i o n ; t h i s " d e l i c i o u s comedy" as A s h w e l l d e s c r i b e d i t , p r o v e d a c o m m e r c i a l s u c c e s s . O p e n i n g on 12 F e b r u a r y 1908 i t ran f o r 143 p e r f o r m a n c e s and was withdrawn o n l y b e c a u s e A s h w e l l , who p l a y e d the t i t l e r o l e , o p t e d f o r a p e r i o d of r e s t b e f o r e the commencement of her p r o v i n c i a l t o u r ( E r a 16 Jan 1909 1 7 ) . The p l a y was, however, r e v i v e d the f o l l o w i n g y e a r f o r a f u r t h e r 32 p e r f o r m a n c e s . A l t h o u g h A s h w e l l r e q u i r e d few a l t e r a t i o n s to the s c r i p t , she d i d r e q u e s t a change of t i t l e . ^ H a m i l t o n had o r i g i n a l l y c a l l e d t h e p l a y The A d v e n t u r e s s , i n o b v i o u s r e f e r e n c e t o an exchange between D i a n a and B r e t h e r t o n i n A c t I I I : B r e t h e r t o n . ... Oh, hang i t a l l , I know I'm no match f o r you i n an argument. But however much you may s n e e r and j e e r a t me, you must know p e r f e c t l y w e l l t h a t your c o n d u c t has been t h a t of an a d v e n t u r e s s . D i a n a ( l i g h t l y ) . An a d v e n t u r e s s ! So I'm an a d v e n t u r e s s am I? Doesn't t h i s r a t h e r r e m i n d you of t h e c e l e b r a t e d i n t e r c h a n g e of 6 A c c o r d i n g to K n o b l o c k , " D i a n a of Dobson's had o r i g i n a l l y a somewhat m i s l e a d i n g t i t l e . We s e a r c h e d about f o r a n o t h e r one. The h e r o i n e b e i n g c a l l e d D i a n a , we t h o u g h t i t might be good to j o i n i t up w i t h the name of the shop a t which she worked" (Round the Room 9 1 ) . 128 c o m p l i m e n t s between the pot and k e t t l e ? (51) The t i t l e i s a l s o , however, a c h a l l e n g e to a d r a m a t i c f e m a l e s t e r e o t y p e which had i t s r o o t s i n melodrama. In f a c t , so p r e v a l e n t was t h i s p a r t i c u l a r t y p e of f e m a l e v i l l a i n t h a t Jerome K. Jerome i n c l u d e s a s e c t i o n on her i n S t a g e l a n d , a s e r i e s of tongue - a n d cheek p r o f i l e s of f i g u r e s from t h a t g e n r e . A c c o r d i n g t o Jerome, the m e l o d r a m a t i c a d v e n t u r e s s s i g n i f i e s " b l a c k - h e a r t e d and abandoned womanhood" (35) which t r a n s l a t e d means t h a t she i s a c l e v e r b u s i n e s s woman who d r e s s e s w e l l . She a l m o s t a l w a y s has a t e r r i b l e s e c r e t t h a t when r e v e a l e d , wreaks havoc w i t h her m a r i t a l m a c h i n a t i o n s , and she s t a n d s i n marked c o n t r a s t to the h e r o i n e , a p a s s i v e f i g u r e of n o b i l i t y and s e l f - s a c r i f i c e . She i s , i n o t h e r words, e v i l s t e p - s i s t e r t o the v i c t i m i z e d but alw a y s a n g e l i c C i n d e r e l l a . The "mental n a u s e a " s u f f e r e d by H a m i l t o n i n r e s p o n s e to " t h e u t t e r s l o p p i n e s s of the admir e d t y p e of h e r o i n e " ( L i f e E r r a n t 5 7 ) , however, r e s u l t e d i n her endowing D i a n a w i t h some of the c h a r a c t e r i s t i c s n o r m a l l y a s s o c i a t e d w i t h the s t a g e a d v e n t u r e s s . A c c o r d i n g to A s h w e l l , " D i a n a i s by n a t u r e a Bohemian, and, l i k e a l l Bohemians when they a r e p o o r , i n a p e r p e t u a l s t a t e of r e v o l t . And when she i s t h o r o u g h l y put o u t , she s a y s a g r e a t many n a s t y and b i t t e r t h i n g s about the powers t h a t be" ( P a l l M a l l 8 Feb 1908). She i s a l s o a s s e r t i v e and w i l l i n g t o i n i t i a t e a c t i o n , and as suc h s t a n d s i n marked c o n t r a s t to the p r e v a i l i n g s o c i a l as w e l l as d r a m a t i c i d e a l o f womanly s u b m i s s i o n . 129 T h i s i s not t o s u g g e s t t h a t D i a n a of Dobson's l a u n c h e s a f u l l - s c a l e a t t a c k upon p a t r i a r c h a l c u l t u r e . I f R o b i n s ' V o t e s f o r Women p r o c l a i m s i t s e l f a " d r a m a t i c t r a c t " , H a m i l t o n ' s D i a n a of Dobson's p r e s e n t s i t s e l f as "a r o m a n t i c comedy." A s h w e l l d e s c r i b e d the p i e c e as " v e r y , v e r y l i g h t " and H a m i l t o n m a i n t a i n e d t h a t she "had no s e r i o u s o b j e c t i n w r i t i n g [ i t ] " ( P a l l M a l l 8 Feb 1908). Yet the p l a y does not l a c k a c r i t i c a l p e r s p e c t i v e . H a m i l t o n added i n the same i n t e r v i e w , " I am h o p i n g t h a t the s t o r y may p r o v e i n t e r e s t i n g t o the g e n e r a l p u b l i c , who do not know as a r u l e much about t h e l i v e s of s h o p - g i r l s , and the want of c o n s i d e r a t i o n w i t h w h i c h some of them a r e t r e a t e d by t h e i r e m p l o y e r s . " A s h w e l l n o t e d t h a t " t h e a u t h o r e s s can h i t h a r d when she l i k e s , and some of the s c e n e s a r e w r i t t e n i n a s p i r i t t h a t can o n l y be d e s c r i b e d as e x c e e d i n g l y s a r c a s t i c and s a t i r i c a l " ( P a l l Ma 11 8 Feb 1908). To borrow Shaw's p h r a s e o l o g y when t a l k i n g about h i s own p l a y s , H a m i l t o n uses d e v i c e s of r o m a n t i c comedy to c o a t t h e p r o p a g a n d i s t p i l l . As the E r a c r i t i c w r ote, the p l a y " i s p r o d u c e d q u i t e a p r o p o s of the a g i t a t i o n a g a i n s t l i v i n g i n and o f t h e c r y f o r f e m a l e s u f f r a g e . I t v o i c e s v e r y b o l d l y the r e v o l t of t h e modern woman a g a i n s t her s u b j e c t i o n , h er c r a v i n g f o r i n t e r e s t i n l i f e , her h a t r e d of monotony, and her d e s i r e f o r a "good t i m e ' " (15 Feb 1908 1 7 ) . In b o t h her r e - d e f i n i t i o n of well-known d r a m a t i c f e m a l e t y p e s and her a t t e n t i o n to the p l i g h t of a group of women-w o r k e r s , H a m i l t o n d i s p l a y s a f e m i n i s t p e r s p e c t i v e i n f o r m e d by i s s u e s r a i s e d w i t h i n t h e gr o w i n g women's movement. R e j e c t i n g what she c o n s i d e r e d t o be the s e r v i l e and i m i t a t i v e n a t u r e of most women's a r t , she s t r o v e i n s t e a d to pr o d u c e work t h a t e x p r e s s e d a d i s t i n c t l y f e m a l e p o i n t of view: "My c o n c e p t i o n of woman i s i n e v i t a b l y the f e m i n i n e c o n c e p t i o n ; a t h i n g so e n t i r e l y u n l i k e the m a s c u l i n e c o n c e p t i o n of woman t h a t i t i s e m i n e n t l y n e e d f u l to d e f i n e the term and make my meaning c l e a r " ( M a r r i a g e 1 9 ) . D i a n a of  Dobson's i s j u s t one i n s t a n c e of H a m i l t o n ' s s t r u g g l e to d e f i n e "woman" a p a r t from the a t t r i b u t e s t r a d i t i o n a l l y f o i s t e d upon her by a p a t r i a r c h a l i d e o l o g y . In d o i n g so she i n e v i t a b l y r e l i e s upon d r a m a t i c c o n v e n t i o n s r o o t e d - i n t h a t i d e o l o g y , d e l i b e r a t e l y r e c o n s t r u c t i n g them, however, a c c o r d i n g to her f e m i n i s t p o i n t of view. In the c a s e of D i a n a of Dobson's, H a m i l t o n h a r k e n s back t o a t r a d i t i o n of l i g h t comedy i n i t i a t e d by Tom R o b e r t s o n i n a h a n d f u l o f " c u p - a n d - s a u c e r " p l a y s w r i t t e n f o r the B a n c r o f t s i n t h e 1860s. P a r t of a l a r g e r - s c a l e r e a c t i o n to the e x c e s s e s of much m i d - V i c t o r i a n t h e a t r e , R o b e r t s o n ' s g e n t e e l c o m e d i e s d i s p l a y "a c l e v e r n e s s i n i n v e s t i n g w i t h r o m a n t i c a s s o c i a t i o n s commonplace d e t a i l s of l i f e " (Athenaeum 23 Jan 18 6 9 ) . H i s most s u c c e s s f u l p i e c e , C a s t e ( 1 8 6 7 ) , a C i n d e r e l l a s t o r y of c r o s s - c l a s s a l l i a n c e , r e l i e s upon d e l i c a t e l y r e n d e r e d romance to s i d e - s t e p the p o t e n t i a l l y s t i c k y m o r a l and s o c i a l p r o b l e m s i t r a i s e s . U n l i k e the p l a y ' s o t h e r w o r k i n g - c l a s s f i g u r e s , the h e r o i n e , E s t h e r , d i s p l a y s a l a d y - l i k e g e n t i l i t y t h a t j u s t i f i e s the Hon. George D ' A l r o y ' s l o v e and d e s i r e to r a i s e her to h i s s t a t i o n . As he s a y s , " C a s t e i s a good t h i n g i f i t ' s not c a r r i e d too f a r . I t s h u t s the door on the p r e t e n t i o u s and the v u l g a r : but i t s h o u l d open the door v e r y wide f o r e x c e p t i o n a l m e r i t " ( 1 8 3 ) . The " e x c e p t i o n a l ' E s t h e r , m i s c a s t f o r l i f e among the w o r k i n g - c l a s s , i s r e s c u e d t h r o u g h a d e l i c a t e l y wrought romance, her p r i n c e l y s o l d i e r c a r r y i n g her o f f to a l i f e of l a d y - l i k e ease i n a v e r y f i n e house. P i n e r o ' s T r e l a w n y of the " W e l l s " (1898) s t r i k e s a l a t e -V i c t o r i a n v a r i a t i o n upon C a s t e , e n l i s t i n g the e a r l i e r p l a y ' s f o r m a l s t r u c t u r e , r o m a n t i c p l o t and d e l i c a t e tone i n a r e c o n s i d e r a t i o n of t h e p r o b l e m p l a y of m i s a l l i a n c e and r e h a b i l i t a t i o n . T r e l a w n y of the " W e l l s " c o n c e r n s a n o t h e r w o r k i n g woman's t r a n s l a t i o n i n t o r e s p e c t a b i l i t y t h r o u g h an i m p e n d i n g m a r r i a g e i n t o the a r i s t o c r a c y . But whereas i n the p r o b l e m p l a y s of the p e r i o d , s u c h c r o s s - c l a s s l i a i s o n s a r e doomed by the a g g r e s s i v e s o c i a l c o n v e n t i o n s they v i o l a t e , i n T r e l a w n y o f the " W e l l s " t h e i s s u e i s evaded and the m a r r i a g e s a n c t i o n e d by means of an a e s t h e t i c a t t i t u d e t h a t u n i t e s romance w i t h t h e a t r e h i s t o r y . In a " R o b e r t s o n i a n t r i b u t e to R o b e r t s o n " the r e u n i o n of Rose T r e l a w n y and A r t h u r Gower i s e n g i n e e r e d to t a k e p l a c e d u r i n g a r e h e a r s a l of what i n the c o n t e x t of the p l a y i s seen as the " i n n o v a t i v e ' c u p - a n d -s a u c e r comedy of r e f o r m i n g p l a y w r i g h t Tom W r e n c h / R o b e r t s o n ( s e e K a p l a n " C h a i r s " ) . In H a m i l t o n ' s hands, the romance i n su c h comedy becomes a f e m i n i s t i s s u e , and D i a n a of Dobson's s e r v e s as a p r a c t i c a l d e m o n s t r a t i o n of " t h e b u s i n e s s - l i k e a s p e c t of l o v e i n woman, the s o c i a l or c o m m e r c i a l n e c e s s i t y f o r s e x u a l i n t e r c o u r s e ... u s u a l l y i g n o r e d by an i m i t a t i v e f e m i n i n e a r t - b e c a u s e i t i s l a c k i n g i n man, and i s , t h e r e f o r e , not r e a l l y g r a s p e d by him" ( M a r r i a g e 1 1 3 ) . A c c o r d i n g to H a m i l t o n women a r e g e n e r a l l y l e s s r o m a n t i c than men by v i r t u e of t h e i r c o m m e r c i a l i n t e r e s t i n m a t t e r s of s e x u a l a t t r a c t i o n ( M a r r i a g e 2 8 ) , and t h i s a f f e c t s t h e i r r e a c t i o n to as w e l l as p a r t i c i p a t i o n i n romance: I t i s be c a u s e her l o v e has a l w a y s been her l i v e l i h o o d t h a t woman has n e v e r been i n s p i r e d by i t as man has been i n s p i r e d . And i t i s j u s t b e c a u s e i t i s so b u s i n e s s - l i k e t h a t her i n t e r e s t i n l o v e i s o f t e n so keen. F o r i n s t a n c e , her c u s t o m a r y a p p r e c i a t i o n of a book or a work of a r t d e a l i n g w i t h l o v e , and n o t h i n g but l o v e , i s the outcome of s o m e t h i n g more than s e n t i m e n t and o v e r p o w e r i n g c o n s c i o u s n e s s of s e x . To her a woman i n l o v e i s not o n l y a woman swayed by e m o t i o n , but a human b e i n g engaged i n c a r v i n g f o r h e r s e l f a c a r e e r or s e c u r i n g f o r h e r s e l f a means of l i v e l i h o o d . Her i n t e r e s t i n a l o v e s t o r y i s , t h e r e f o r e , much more complex than a man's i n t e r e s t t h e r e i n , and t h e a p p r e c i a t i o n i t i s of a v e r y d i f f w h i c h she b r i n g s to e r e n t q u a l i t y . ( M a r r i a g e 117-8) A l a t t e r - d a y C i n d e r e l l a , the D i a n a of the p l a y ' s t i t l e was thrown d e s t i t u t e upon the w o r l d f o l l o w i n g the u n e x p e c t e d d e a t h of her f a t h e r . L i k e most m i d d l e - c l a s s g i r l s of the p e r i o d , she was nev e r t r a i n e d to ear n her own l i v i n g and l a c k i n g e i t h e r a husband or o t h e r means of s u p p o r t , e v e n t u a l l y f i n d s h e r s e l f a t the p r e m i s e s of Mr. Dobson's h i g h - c l a s s d r a p e r y emporium. H a v i n g pushed C i n d e r e l l a i n t o the i n d u s t r i a l age, H a m i l t o n l o c a t e s her i n an i n s t i t u t i o n a l i z e d d o r m i t o r y where, a l o n g w i t h f o u r o t h e r would-be C i n d e r e l l a s , she r e t i r e s a f t e r s l a v i n g a l l day under the w r a t h f u l eyes of Mr. Dobson and h i s forewoman, M i s s P r i n g l e , E d w a r d i a n v a r i a t i o n s on the t r a d i t i o n a l e v i l s t e p - m o t h e r . D i a n a of Dobson's b e g i n s , a p p r o p r i a t e l y enough, i n d a r k n e s s ( l i g h t i t s e l f i s a c o s t l y commodity a t the Dobson's e s t a b l i s h m e n t and i t s use r e g u l a t e d by r u l e s and f i n e s ) , a s i t u a t i o n r e l i e v e d by the g r o p i n g hands of a f e m a l e shop a s s i s t a n t . L o c a t i n g t h e gas j e t , she t u r n s the l i g h t up on "a b a r e room of the d o r m i t o r y t y p e ... [ w i t h ] e v e r y t h i n g p l a i n and c o m f o r t l e s s to the l a s t d e g r e e " ( 7 ) . As the many i l l u s t r a t i o n s of the s e t show, f i v e s m a l l beds a r e ra n g e d a g a i n s t the u p - s t a g e w a l l to w h i c h , d u r i n g the c o u r s e of the a c t , f i v e t i r e d and worn women r e p a i r , t a l k i n g as they u n d r e s s . Such p o t e n t i a l l y t i t i l l a t i n g s t a g e b u s i n e s s might be t h o u g h t c u r i o u s f r o m a f e m i n i s t w r i t e r who e x p r e s s e d her ra g e " t h a t c h a r a c t e r , w o r t h , i n t e l l e c t were h e l d v a l u e l e s s i n woman, t h a t n o t h i n g c o u n t e d i n her but the one c a p a c i t y -the power of awaking d e s i r e " ( M a r r i a g e 1 3 1 ) . And c e r t a i n l y some r e v i e w e r s c o n s i d e r e d the sc e n e "a l i t t l e d a r i n g " or p o t e n t i a l l y " s h o c k i n g . " The c r i t i c f o r the S t a g e o b j e c t e d t h a t " i t was an o b v i o u s l y m a k e - b e l i e v e g o i n g t o bed, an i n s i n c e r e b u s i n e s s w i t h no b e a r i n g on the p l a y , i n t r o d u c e d m e r e l y f o r wha t e v e r s e n s a t i o n a l a p p e a l i t may have i n i t s e l f " (13 Feb 1908 2 3 ) . B e a r i n g i n mind, however, H a m i l t o n ' s c o n t e n t i o n t h a t women s p e c i a l i z e i n p e r s o n a l adornment as a m a t t e r of b u s i n e s s and not from " o v e r f l o w i n g s e x u a l i t y , " s u c h s t a g e a c t i o n s h o u l d be j u d g e d as a p u b l i c d i s a s s e m b l i n g of the f e m a l e s e x - o b j e c t , a v i s u a l d i s m a n t l i n g of her v a r i o u s p a r t s . We a r e meant to w i t n e s s women's p r o f e s s i o n a l i s m i n t h e q u i c k and e f f i c i e n t manner i n which th e y d i s c a r d t h e p u f f s and s w i t c h e s , r i b b o n s and c o l l a r s , w a i s t s and s k i r t s t h a t t r a n s l a t e them i n t o s u i t a b l e r e p r e s e n t a t i v e s of a t t r a c t i v e womanhood. T h i s may be what m o t i v a t e d t h e St a g e r e v i e w e r ' s o b j e c t i o n s i n c e he goes on to c o m p l a i n t h a t " t h e s e d i f f e r e n t s t a g e s of u n d r e s s do not happen to be made p r e t t y . " O t h e r c r i t i c s a p p r e c i a t e d the s c e n e ' s " p r o f e s s i o n a l " a s p e c t . One c h a r a c t e r i z e d the women's movements as " m e c h a n i c a l " ( I l l u s t r a t e d London News 22 Feb 1908 266) w h i l e a n o t h e r commented t h a t " T h e r e i s n o t h i n g a p p r o a c h i n g t h e i m p r o p e r i n t h i s e p i s o d e , though we see h a l f a dozen t i r e d shop a s s i s t a n t s g e t t i n g i n t o t h e i r bed c l o t h e s a f t e r r e v e a l i n g s e c r e t s o f the unmaking of v a r i o u s forms of c o i f f u r e , w h i c h o n l y a woman would have t h e a u d a c i t y to a t t a c k " ( I l l u s t r a t e d S p o r t i n g and D r a m a t i c News 7 March 1908 1 9 ) . In t h e words of H.M. Walbrook, " i f any f l i p p a n t r e a d e r i m a g i n e s t h a t by b o o k i n g a s e a t a t the Kingsway T h e a t r e he w i l l g e t a view of s o m e t h i n g r a t h e r s c a n d a l o u s and i m p r o p e r - w e l l , a l l we s h a l l say i s , L e t him book h i s s e a t ! He w i l l d e s e r v e h i s d i s a p p o i n t m e n t " ( P a l l M a l l 13 Feb 1908 4 ) . T h i s p r o c e s s o f d e - e r o t i c i z a t i o n i s a l s o e n c o u r a g e d by the ab s e n c e of any male v i e w e r s on s t a g e . Women, a t l e a s t w i t h i n the c o n t e x t of t h e p l a y ' s i n i t i a l s c e n e , c e a s e to be o b j e c t s of a s u b j e c t male g a z e . In f a c t , men a r e c o m p l e t e l y e x c l u d e d from t h e a c t i o n o f the f i r s t a c t , a l l o w i n g H a m i l t o n t o e s t a b l i s h a f e m a l e p e r s p e c t i v e s a f e from male i n t e r r u p t i o n . What k i n d of women a r e condemned to a j o y l e s s round of overwork f o l l o w e d by " r e s t ' i n a b l e a k and o v e r - c r o w d e d d o r m i t o r y t h a t manages to be q u i t e l i t e r a l l y o n l y a bed room? Those, t h e p l a y makes c l e a r , w i t h o u t money or m a t r i m o n i a l p r o s p e c t s . M i s s S m i t h e r s , who e n t e r s f i r s t , " i s w e l l o v e r t h i r t y , f a d e d and p r a c t i c a l l o o k i n g " (7) and c o n s i d e r s h e r s e l f an inmate f o r l i f e . P a s t the c o n v e n t i o n a l age f o r a m a r r i a g e p r o p o s a l ( t h e o n l y a p p a r e n t means of e s c a p e ) , she has r e c o n c i l e d h e r s e l f to nev e r h a v i n g a home 136 o f h er own: "Me, b l e s s you - no su c h l u c k . I'm one of the l e f t ones; I am l e f t h i g h and d r y . I made up my mind to t h a t l o n g ago" ( 7 ) . E x i s t i n g as she does i n a s o c i e t y t h a t c o u p l e s women's employment w i t h low pay, low s t a t u s and l i t t l e i f any o p p o r t u n i t y f o r advancement or i n t e l l e c t u a l c h a l l e n g e , she i s condemned to a monotonous round o f u n c e a s i n g d r u d g e r y where c o m p l a i n i n g w i l l o n l y r e s u l t i n " t h e s a c k . " M i s s S m i t h e r s i s s p e a k i n g to f e l l o w i n m a t e K i t t y B r a n t . "About twenty, p r e t t y , but p a l e and t i r e d " K i t t y has s e c u r e d her r e l e a s e t h r o u g h romance; she i s to be m a r r i e d soon, and as we would e x p e c t , the c o m m e r c i a l a s p e c t of t h e s u b j e c t i s g i v e n p r o m i n e n c e . K i t t y ' s m a r r i a g e i s d e s i r a b l e , f i r s t b e c a u s e i t f r e e s h e r from o p p r e s s i v e work c o n d i t i o n s , and sec o n d b e c a u s e i t a f f o r d s h er t h e o p p o r t u n i t y of " h a v i n g a l i t t l e home" o f her own. F r e d , the p r o s p e c t i v e groom, i s d e a l t w i t h i n one l i n e , p r a i s e d b ecause he "has a l w a y s been v e r y c a r e f u l and s t e a d y , and has got a good b i t put by" ( 8 ) . G i v e n the extreme u n d e r v a l u a t i o n of women i n s o - c a l l e d " p a i d " work, u n p a i d d o m e s t i c l a b o u r can b e g i n to a p p e a r the l e s s e r o f two e v i l s . We would be f o r g i v e n f o r s u s p e c t i n g t h a t K i t t y e n t e r s " t h e h o u s e k e e p i n g t r a d e i n o r d e r to l i v e ... [ w h i c h ] i s not a l w a y s q u i t e the same as e n t e r i n g the h o u s e k e e p i n g t r a d e i n o r d e r to l o v e " ( M a r r i a g e 2 7 ) . K i t t y i s a comedic v e r s i o n of the " h a g g a r d , u n d e r p a i d g i r l " H a m i l t o n m e n t i o n s i n M a r r i a g e as a T r a d e , who " c r i e s t o a n o t h e r , i n a b u r s t of b i t t e r c o n f i d e n c e , 'I would marry any one, to get out of t h i s ' " ( 2 7 ) . So i t might a p p e a r would D i a n a . As she s a y s i n a l a t e r exchange w i t h K i t t y : D i a n a . You're g o i n g to have done w i t h i t , K i t t y . In t h r e e months' time y o u ' l l be m a r r i e d . However your m a r r i a g e t u r n s o u t , i t w i l l be a change f o r you - a change from the h o s i e r y d e p a r t m e n t of Dobson's. K i t t y ( h u r t ) . D i — D i a n a . ...Oh, I d i d n ' t mean to be u n k i n d , K i t . You're a d e a r , and i f I'm n a s t y to you i t ' s o n l y b e c a u s e I envy you. You're g o i n g t o get out of a l l t h i s : i n t h r e e months' time y o u ' l l have t u r n e d your back on i t f o r good - y o u ' l l have done w i t h the n a g g i n g and the s t a n d i n g and t h i s h o r r i b l e b a r e room - and the d i n i n g -room w i t h the s l o p p y t e a on the t a b l e and P r i n g l e ' s s o u r f a c e a t the end of i t . Lucky g i r l ! But I h a v e n ' t any p r o s p e c t of t u r n i n g my back on i t , and i t d o e s n ' t seem to me I ev e r s h a l l . (13) D i a n a , who i s a l r e a d y t w e n t y - s e v e n or t w e n t y - e i g h t y e a r s of age, l o o k s f o r w a r d to a l i f e l i k e M i s s S m i t h e r s ' , one of c o n t i n u o u s " g r i n d and s q u a l o r and t y r a n n y and o v e r w o r k " ( 1 1 ) : The d e l e c t a b l e a t m osphere of Dobson's w i l l f o l l o w me about w herever I go. I s h a l l c r a w l 138 round t o s i m i l a r e s t a b l i s h m e n t s , c r i n g i n g to be t a k e n on a t t h e same s t a r v a t i o n s a l a r y -and t h e n s e t t l e down i n the same s t u f f y d o r m i t o r y , w i t h the same mean l i t t l e r u l e s to obey - I s h a l l s e r v e the same s t r e a m of i n t e l l i g e n t c u s t o m e r s - and b o l t my d i n n e r o f f t h e same tough meat i n t h e same gloomy d i n i n g - r o o m w i t h t h e same m u s t a r d - c o l o u r e d paper on the w a l l s . And t h a t ' s l i f e . ( 1 3) Q u i t e u n l i k e M i s s S m i t h e r s or her f a i r y - t a l e model, however, D i a n a does not bear her s u b j e c t i o n w i t h p a s s i v i t y . She r a i l s l o n g and l o u d a g a i n s t her v i c t i m i z a t i o n . U n a b l e to c u l t i v a t e a s u f f i c i e n t l y humbled p e r s o n a , she s u f f e r s c o n t i n u a l r e b u k e s from b o t h Dobson and P r i n g l e , r e s u l t i n g i n i n n u m e r a b l e f i n e s f o r " u n b u s i n e s s l i k e c o n d u c t " which r e d u c e her a l r e a d y meagre s a l a r y f u r t h e r . Nor s h o u l d i t be t h o u g h t t h a t D i a n a ' s c o m p l a i n t s a b o u t " l i v i n g i n " a r e e x a g g e r a t e d f o r d r a m a t i c e f f e c t . A l t h o u g h the p l a y i s c o n c e i v e d as a " r o m a n t i c comedy" H a m i l t o n ' s d e p i c t i o n of the l i f e of sweated f e m a l e s h o p - a s s i s t a n t s i s r o o t e d i n we 11-documented f a c t . 'Home1 f o r s u c h women was a d o r m i t o r y , d e s c r i b e d by one w r i t e r as "a u n i q u e b l e n d of b a r r a c k , D o t h e b o y s H a l l , and workhouse" ( C l a r i o n 16 Feb 1912 7 ) . A l t h o u g h s t r i c t l y b are and i n s t i t u t i o n a l , any a t t e m p t by r e s i d e n t s a t d e c o r a t i o n was a b s o l u t e l y f o r b i d d e n . A c c o r d i n g to the r u l e of one such e s t a b l i s h m e n t , "No p i c t u r e s , p h o t o s , e t c . , a l l o w e d to d i s f i g u r e t h e w a l l s . Any one so d o i n g w i l l be c h a r g e d w i t h the r e p a i r s " (Sweated I n d u s t r y 4 9 ) . The rooms were crowded, i n a d e q u a t e l y v e n t i l a t e d , and many l a c k e d p r o p e r b a t h i n g f a c i l i t i e s . The f o o d , o f t e n i n s u f f i c i e n t and of poor q u a l i t y , was p r e p a r e d a c c o r d i n g to a menu of u n v a r y i n g monotony, and s e r v e d i n d i n i n g - r o o m s t h a t were too o f t e n i n f e s t e d w i t h bugs. Yet d e s p i t e s u c h a p p a l l i n g l i v i n g c o n d i t i o n s , a f e m a l e shop a s s i s t a n t was e x p e c t e d to be q u i t e l i t e r a l l y on her f e e t from e i g h t o ' c l o c k i n the morning to as l a t e as e l e v e n o ' c l o c k a t n i g h t f o r a s a l a r y of a p p r o x i m a t e l y f i f t e e n pounds a y e a r ( D i a n a e a r n s t h i r t e e n pounds a t D o b s o n ' s ) , w i t h which sum "she had to c l o t h e h e r s e l f , pay l a u n d r y and keep h e r s e l f d u r i n g h o l i d a y t i m e " (Common Cause 19 May 1910 8 9 ) . As D i a n a p u t s i t , she must l i v e "on t h i r t e e n pounds a y e a r , f i v e bob a week, w i t h a l l my c l o t h e s t o f i n d and my f i n e s to pay... F i v e bob a week f o r f o u r t e e n h o u r s work a d a y — f i v e bob a week f o r the use of my h e a l t h and s t r e n g t h — f i v e bob a week f o r my l i f e . And I h a v e n ' t a doubt t h a t a good many o t h e r s h e r e a r e i n the same box" ( 1 2 ) . Such a s a l a r y was of c o u r s e s u s c e p t i b l e to r e d u c t i o n f r o m i n n u m e r a b l e f i n e s . C h a r g e a b l e o f f e n c e s numbered from a minimum of 50 a t one e s t a b l i s h m e n t to a maximum of 198 at a n o t h e r . They c o v e r e d e v e r y a s p e c t of a shop a s s i s t a n t ' s on and o f f h o u r s : " G o s s i p i n g , s t a n d i n g i n g r o u p s , or l o u n g i n g about i n an u n b u s i n e s s l i k e manner, f i n e 140 3d. A s s i s t a n t s must i n t r o d u c e a t l e a s t two a r t i c l e s to each c u s t o m e r , f i n e 2d. U n n e c e s s a r y t a l k i n g and n o i s e i n bedrooms i s s t r i c t l y p r o h i b i t e d , f i n e 6d. F o r l o s i n g copy of r u l e s , 2d. F o r u n b u s i n e s s l i k e c o n d u c t , 6d" (Sweated I n d u s t r y 54-5 5 ) . Such were " t h e l o n g t r a i n of woes t h a t l a y i n w a i t f o r the o v e r - w o r k e d , u n d e r - f e d , and s h u t - i n women" (Sweated  I n d u s t r y 54) c o m p e l l e d , l i k e D i a n a and her companions, to l i v e a l i f e o f "shop s e r v i t u d e . " ^ In o r d e r t o a s s u r e t h e a c c u r a c y of her s t a g e p i c t u r e , H a m i l t o n r e q u e s t e d t h a t M a r g a r e t B o n d f i e l d , o r g a n i z e r f o r the Shop A s s i s t a n t s ' U n i o n ( l a t e r to become B r i t a i n ' s f i r s t woman c a b i n e t m i n i s t e r ) r e a d the p l a y b e f o r e i t went i n t o r e h e a r s a l to d e t e r m i n e i f any f a c t u a l e r r o r s had been made. B o n d f i e l d s u g g e s t e d o n l y two c h a n g e s , one c o n c e r n i n g the p r o p e r amount of a f i n e f o r b u r n i n g gas a f t e r e l e v e n o ' c l o c k a t n i g h t , and the o t h e r r e g a r d i n g the r e c k o n i n g of wages ( a p p a r e n t l y women's s a l a r i e s were c a l c u l a t e d by the y e a r and not by the week as H a m i l t o n had s t a t e d ) . Not s u r p r i s i n g l y , the Shop A s s i s t a n t s ' U n i o n c o n s i d e r e d the p l a y a u s e f u l 7 T h e r e was a g i t a t i o n t h r o u g h o u t the p e r i o d f o r l e g i s l a t i o n w hich would i i p r o v e the w o r k i n g and l i v i n g c o n d i t i o n s of shop a s s i s t a n t s a l t h o u g h n o t h i n g much came of i t p r i o r to the War. T h e ' p l i g h t of women s h o p - a s s i s t a n t s was used by the s u f f r a g e movement as a n o t h e r example of women's need f o r the v o t e : "Many shop women do not r e c e i v e pay s u f f i c i e n t f o r t h e i r work, they a r e b a d l y f e d and housed, and no r e g a r d i s g i v e n to t h e i r p h y s i c a l or m o r a l h e a l t h ; they have no v o t e s to g i v e , and t h e r e f o r e Members of P a r l i a m e n t do not c o n c e r n t h e m s e l v e s about t h e i r c o n d i t i o n " (Common Cause 19 May 1910 89) . 141 p i e c e of p r o p a g a n d a and i n v i t e d H a m i l t o n to speak a t t h e i r m e e t i n g s . D i a n a of Dobson's i s n o t , however, a g r i m p i e c e of d r a m a t i c n a t u r a l i s m , bent on d e p i c t i n g i n r e l e n t l e s s d e t a i l the t r a g e d y of the s h o p - w o r k e r ' s l i f e . T h i s must be k e p t i n mind or the p l a y as a whole i s l i k e l y to be m i s j u d g e d . For to c r i t i c i z e i t as T r e w i n does f o r " f a d [ i n g ] a f t e r i t s s t a r t l i n g o p e n i n g a c t " (DLB 10 213), i s to demand a d i f f e r e n t k i n d of p l a y , and to condemn H a m i l t o n f o r not w r i t i n g a f u l l - l e n g t h M i s s T a s s e y . The l a t t e r , a o n e - a c t p l a y by E l i z a b e t h Baker ( f i r s t s t a g e d a t the C o u r t , March 20, 1910 and r e v i v e d by M i s s Horniman a t the C o u r t May 22, 1913) i s s e t i n "bedroom No. 65" of a n o t h e r d r a p e r y e s t a b l i s h m e n t . A " g r i m l i t t l e p i c t u r e of the l i v i n g - i n s y s t e m ... w i t h a l l i t s m a l i g n a n t c o n d i t i o n s and abuses s t i l l p e r m i t t e d by a C h r i s t i a n community" ( S t a g e 29 May 1913 23 ) , i t e x p l o r e s t h e t r a g i c p o t e n t i a l of s u c h a l i f e o n l y h i n t e d a t i n H a m i l t o n ' s p l a y . The M i s s T a s s e y of the p l a y ' s t i t l e i s B a k e r ' s M i s s S m i t h e r s , a f o r t y - y e a r o l d s p i n s t e r -"she n e v e r went out w i t h a f e l l o w i n her l i f e , I ' l l swear" (13) - condemned to " l i v i n g i n " s l a v e r y . H a v i n g become " t o o o l d f o r the work," however, she g e t s the sack b e f o r e the p l a y b e g i n s . And w i t h o u t money, f r i e n d s or r e l a t i o n s , she o p t s f o r s u i c i d e , d y i n g q u i e t l y i n her bed from a d r u g o v e r d o s e w h i l e her companions make p l a n s f o r an upcoming f a n c y - d r e s s p a r t y . In an i n t e r e s t i n g i n v e r s i o n of t h e u n d r e s s i n g s c e n e i n D i a n a o f Dobson's, one o f t h e women i n B a k e r ' s p l a y d r e s s e s up as she g o s s i p s w i t h a f e l l o w w o r k e r , c h a n g i n g from her b l a c k shop d r e s s i n t o a s c a r l e t and w h i t e Q p i e r e t t e ' s f r o c k meant t o a r o u s e her l o v e r . In The Madras House, a comic drama p r o d u c e d as p a r t o f the Duke o f Y o r k ' s r e p e r t o r y ( 1 9 1 0 ) , G r a n v i l l e B a r k e r a l s o a d d r e s s e s t h e d i f f i c u l t i e s o f t h e " l i v i n g i n " s y s t e m . A l t h o u g h o s t e n s i b l y a ' f e m i n i s t ' p l a y a b o u t b o t h women's s e x u a l i t y and t h e i r p l a c e i n s o c i e t y , on c l o s e r s c r u t i n y i t r e v e a l s i t s e l f t o be an e x p l o r a t i o n o f t h e s u b j e c t male's c r i s i s of i d e n t i t y . When we e n t e r a d r a p e r s ' e s t a b l i s h m e n t i n A c t I I , one s t o p on P h i l i p M adras' d o c u m e n t a r y - l i k e 9 o d y s s e y t h r o u g h E d w a r d i a n London, i t i s b e c a u s e P h i l i p , the " o b s e r v e r - h e r o " (Morgan xxv) i s co-owner. C e r t a i n p r o b l e m s e x a c e r b a t e d by t h e " l i v i n g i n " a r r a n g e m e n t a r e a d d r e s s e d i n " t h e w a i t i n g room - t h e one i n wh i c h employee s i t s i n s h i v e r i n g p r e p a r a t i o n f o r i n t e r v i e w s w i t h e m p l o y e r " ( 3 6 ) , where P h i l i p s t r u g g l e s t o come t o some u n d e r s t a n d i n g o f h i s 8 S i s t e r WWSL member, George P a s t o n ' s ( E m i l y Symonds) 1 - a c t 'cockney' p l a y , T i l d a ' s New Hat ( f i r s t p r o d u c e d a t t h e C o u r t T h e a t r e 8 November 1908) a l s o d e t a i l s t h e c o n s t r u c t i o n and d i s a s s e m b l i n g t h r o u g h d r e s s o f t h e f e m a l e sex o b j e c t , and a d d r e s s e s t h e e f f e c t o f b o t h t h e a d o r n e d and un a d o r n e d f e m a l e on male d e s i r e . In t h i s use o f " f i n e r y ' B aker and P a s t o n o f f e r a f e m i n i s t c r i t i q u e on the hegemonic d i s c o u r s e w hich l i n k e d women's " l o v e ' o f f i n e r y t o a l i f e o f v i c e . In the hands of Baker and P a s t o n as w e l l as H a m i l t o n s u c h ' c l o t h i n g i n c i d e n t s ' r e g i s t e r women's s e x u a l / e c o n o m i c o p p r e s s i o n , not t h e i r m o r a l c u l p a b i l i t y . 9 In Ma r g e r y Morgan's words, " t h e d r a m a t i s t l a y s o u t t h e w o r l d he s e e s d o c u m e n t a r y - f a s h i o n , t o s u g g e s t t h e s i m u l t a n e o u s e x i s t e n c e o f c o n t r a s t e d g r o u p s w i t h i n t h e g r e a t E d w a r d i a n m i d d l e c l a s s " ( I n t r o x x v - v i ) . e m p l o y e e s ' p o s i t i o n s r e g a r d i n g t h e p r e g n a n c y o f an u n m a r r i e d r e s i d e n t w hich has become c o n t r o v e r s i a l b e c a u s e she r e f u s e s t o d i s c l o s e t h e f a t h e r ' s name. The s c e n e i s d o m i n a t e d by P h i l i p b o t h d r a m a t i c a l l y and t h e m a t i c a l l y . And w h i l e i t i s t r u e t h a t t h e a c t c o n s i d e r s t h e i s s u e o f women i n t h e work-p l a c e as w e l l as t h e i r f i n a n c i a l r e l a t i o n s h i p t o men, i t i s g i v e n d e f i n i t i o n t h r o u g h P h i l i p ' s p r e s e n c e (he s e r v e s a f t e r a l l as the t e n u o u s l i n k between t h e p l a y ' s f o u r a c t s ) , i t s c o n t e n t f i l t e r e d t h r o u g h h i s b a f f l e d g a z e . F o r d e s p i t e h i s b e s t e f f o r t s , t h e women i n The Madras House r e m a i n c u r i o u s l y i n s c r u t a b l e , an a p p a r e n t l y unknowable f a c t o r i n P h i l i p ' s e q u a t i o n f o r l i v i n g . But i f B a r k e r ' s Madras House d i f f e r s f r o m H a m i l t o n ' s D i a n a of Dobson's i n i t s o v e r t a d o p t i o n o f t h e male p e r s p e c t i v e ( w h i c h seems i n c i d e n t a l l y t o pay t r i b u t e t o t h e p o s i t i o n o f many E d w a r d i a n s u f f r a g i s t s t h a t o n l y women can t r u l y u n d e r s t a n d women and t h e m a t t e r s t h a t c o n c e r n them''"'"') i t does e x p l o i t the e a r l i e r p l a y ' s e p i s o d i c c o n s t r u c t i o n w i t h s e e m i n g l y d i s p a r a t e s c e n e s l i n k e d by t h e p r o t a g o n i s t ' s p r e s e n c e . But even h e r e t h e works d i f f e r s i g n i f i c a n t l y as 10 In an a r t i c l e e n t i t l e d "A P l e a f o r t h e S h o p - G i r l , " f o r i n s t a n c e , t h e s u f f r a g e w r i t e r c o n c l u d e s : " O n l y women can u n d e r s t a n d how t h e i r fellow-women s u f f e r , and can b r i n g p l a i n l y b e f o r e the c o u n t r y t h e h a r d s h i p s o f a s h o p - g i r l ' s l o t , and by s t r i v i n g t o o b t a i n a v o t e , g a i n means t o l e g i s l a t e f o r b e t t e r c o n d i t i o n s . I am s u r e t h a t when a l l r i g h t - t h i n k i n g men r e a l i s e t h a t o n l y women can d e a l w i t h q u e s t i o n s r e s p e c t i n g women's s u f f e r i n g s and h a r d s h i p s t h e y w i l l s u p p o r t t h e women's f r a n c h i s e " (Common Cause 19 May 1910 8 9 ) . B a r k e r ' s d i s t a s t e f o r p l o t - l i n e ( h i s n o t o r i o u s r e f u s a l 'to g e t on w i t h t h e s t o r y ' ) s t a n d s i n marked c o n t r a s t t o H a m i l t o n ' s r e l i a n c e on a C i n d e r e l l a n a r r a t i v e t o p l o t out D i a n a ' s " r o m a n t i c " j o u r n e y . I t i s no f a i r y godmother, however, t h a t m a g i c a l l y t r a n s p o r t s D i a n a away from " t h e t r e a d m i l l g r i n d . " I n s t e a d , a c c o r d i n g t o a p o p u l a r E d w a r d i a n d r a m a t i c c o n v e n t i o n , she r e c e i v e s a l e t t e r from a s o l i c i t o r i n f o r m i n g her t h a t she t o r e c e i v e an i n h e r i t a n c e . Not e x a c t l y a p r i n c e l y sum, t h e t h r e e h u n d r e d pound l e g a c y i s n e v e r t h e l e s s a w i n d f a l l i n D i a n a ' s e y e s . I t means i n d e p e n d e n c e , p r o v i d i n g h e r w i t h a t e m p o r a r y way out of Dobson's t h a t does not ( l i k e i t s a l t e r n a t i v e , m a r r i a g e ) e n t a i l s u b j e c t i o n and p o t e n t i a l d e g r a d a t i o n . F o r D i a n a money i s power, "Power t o do what y l i k e , t o go where you l i k e , t o say what you l i k e " ( 1 6 ) . Which i s e x a c t l y what she d o e s . D i s c o u n t i n g h e r f e l l o w -w o r k e r s ' c a u t i o n , she o p t s i n t r u e E d w a r d i a n f a s h i o n , t o "waste" her money. W h i l e i t l a s t s , she t r i u m p h s : ... I ' l l know what i t i s t o have a r o y a l t i m e - I ' l l deny m y s e l f n o t h i n g . I have had s i x y e a r s o f s c r a p e and s t a r v e - now I ' l l have a month o f e v e r y t h i n g t h a t money can buy me -and t h e r e a r e v e r y few t h i n g s t h a t money c a n ' t buy me - p r e c i o u s few. (16) D i a n a r e a l i z e s H e l e n P a y s o n ' s dreams. She wins the l e g a c y t h a t H e l e n l o s e s to t h e A p p l e , and p l a n s w i t h i t an a c t o f r a d i c a l f r i v o l i t y , a c o n t i n e n t a l e x c u r s i o n t h a t w i l l f o r a s i n g l e month f r e e h er from h a v i n g t o endure t h e " f a t w h i t e f a c e " o f Dobson. " F o r one month," she t e l l s us, " I s h a l l have done what I ch o s e - not what I was f o r c e d t o . F o r one month I s h a l l have had my fre e d o m - and t h a t w i l l be s o m e t h i n g t o remember" ( 1 7 ) . D i a n a , i n f a c t , d e c i d e s t o become her own f a i r y - g o d m o t h e r , and o u t f i t s h e r s e l f a c c o r d i n g l y f o r t h e good l i f e , n e v e r f o r g e t t i n g t h e t e m p o r a l l i m i t s t h a t a r e u s u a l l y p l a c e d upon s u c h f a i r y t a l e s o l u t i o n s . When t h e c u r t a i n r i s e s on A c t s I I and I I I , t h e t r a n s f o r m a t i o n i s c o m p l e t e . The d i n g y d o r m i t o r y o f t h e f i r s t a c t has been metamorphosed i n t o the posh s i t t i n g - r o o m o f a Sw i s s h o t e l , the i l l - f e d and o v e r - w o r k e d i n m a t e s i n t o b o r e d and i n d u l g e d members of t h e s o c i a l e l i t e , a poor and r e s e n t f u l D i a n a i n t o a merry widow o f a p p a r e n t l y s u b s t a n t i a l means. To f a c i l i t a t e h e r t r a n s l a t i o n i n t o h i g h s o c i e t y D i a n a has, i n a comic v a r i a t i o n on t h e "woman w i t h a p a s t , " i n v e n t e d a dead husband who a l l o w s her a l l t h e s o c i a l f r e e d o ms o f m a r r i a g e w i t h none of t h e o b l i g a t i o n s . E n j o y i n g her new f o u n d i n d e p e n d e n c e , "Mrs. M a s s i n g b e r d " * * p r o v e s a 11 I am i n d e b t e d to V i v G a r d n e r f o r t h e s u g g e s t i o n t h a t H a m i l t o n ' s c h o i c e o f t h e surname " M a s s i n g b e r d " f o r D i a n a might have been i n t e n d e d as an acknowledgement o f Mrs. M a s s i n g b e r d , who f o u n d e d t h e P i o n e e r C l u b i n London i n 1892 A c c o r d i n g t o D a v i d R u b e n s t e i n , "From i t s i n c e p t i o n t h e c l u b was i n t e n d e d as a home f o r women of advanced v i e w s . . . Members were e x p e c t e d t o hew a p a t h t h r o u g h t h e j u n g l e o f g r e a t h i t among the v a r i o u s w e l l - t o - d o t o u r i s t s , h e r d e t e r m i n a t i o n " t o e n j o y e v e r y t h i n g - even [ t h e ] r e v o l t i n g s oup" ( 2 6 ) , a r e f r e s h i n g change from t h e i r p r a c t i s e d 12 e n n u i . I f she were a c o n v e n t i o n a l m e l o d r a m a t i c a d v e n t u r e s s , s e e k i n g by means of h e r masquerade, s o c i a l a c c e p t a n c e and a "good" m a r r i a g e , h e r s u c c e s s would seem g u a r a n t e e d . She c e r t a i n l y s t i m u l a t e s t h e " r o m a n t i c ' i n t e r e s t of S i r J a b e z G r i n l e y , a r e c e n t l y k n i g h t e d s e l f - m a d e man who began h i s " c a r e e r as a b r a t o f a boy r u n n i n g e r r a n d s " and has amassed a f o r t u n e s e l l i n g goods t o l o w e r m i d d l e - c l a s s women a t "a h a l f p e n n y c h e a p e r than t h e y can g e t i t anywhere e l s e " ( 3 1 ) . In an exchange w i t h a d i s t i n c t l y S h a v i a n 13 f l a v o u r , D i a n a ( f r o m a h i g h l y i r o n i c v a n t a g e p o i n t ) d i s c u s s e s " e c o n o m i c s " w i t h her f o r m e r e m p l o y e r , who r e a d i l y a d m i t s to k e e p i n g down e x p e n s e s by s w e a t i n g w o r k e r s . When D i a n a o b j e c t s - "Oh, t h a t ' s t h e way t o make money - t o get o t h e r p e o p l e t o work f o r you f o r as l i t t l e as t h e y can be got to t a k e , and put the p r o c e e d s o f t h e i r work i n t o your p r e j u d i c e and o u t d a t e d i d e a s , g u i d e d by t h e i r own c o n v i c t i o n s and u n i n h i b i t e d by t h e c o n s t r a i n t s of c o n v e n t i o n . I f any s i n g l e i n s t i t u t i o n c o u l d c l a i m t o be the home of the new woman i t was the P i o n e e r C l u b " ( 2 2 2 ) . 12 D i a n a ' s t h r i l l a t s e e i n g t h e S w i s s A l p s m i r r o r e d H a m i l t o n ' s own p l e a s a n t memory of her " f i r s t s i g h t of the A l p s f r o m a r a i l w a y window i n the p a l e g r e y of m o r n i n g " ( L i f e E r r a n t 5 8 ) . H a m i l t o n was u n d o u b t e d l y one of t h o s e r o m a n t i c , but h o p e l e s s l y " u n s o p h i s t i c a t e d Cook's t o u r i s t s , " t a k i n g her " f i v e g u i n e a s ' worth o f l o v e l y L u c e r n e " who a r e r i d i c u l e d by t h e " o r n a m e n t a l c l a s s " i n the p l a y . 13 At l e a s t one r e v i e w e r a t t r i b u t e d t h e a u t h o r s h i p o f F anny's F i r s t P l a y ( o r i g i n a l l y p r o d u c e d anonymously, t h e r e b y m i r r o r i n g t h e a c t i o n of the p l a y ) t o H a m i l t o n . 147 p o c k e t s " (31) - he a c c u s e s h e r o f b e i n g " s e n t i m e n t a l , " a p r e t t y t h i n g i n a woman so he s a y s , but out o f p l a c e i n t h e " c o m m e r c i a l war" w h i c h i s b u s i n e s s . L i k e Shaw i n s u c h a p l a y as Widowers' Houses, H a m i l t o n a l l o w s the c a p i t a l i s t t r a d e " v i l l a i n ' t o j u s t i f y h i m s e l f , so much so t h a t i n t h e eyes of one c r i t i c "we have a s t o r y f o r t h e employed as a g a i n s t t h e empl o y e r , i n wh i c h t h e l a t t e r , even w i t h the a u t h o r e s s on the o t h e r s i d e , comes out on t o p " (ISDN 7 March 1908 1 9 ) . Yet even t h i s b u s i n e s s man i s p r e p a r e d to t a k e h i s mind o f f b u s i n e s s o c c a s i o n a l l y , and i n A c t I I I he a b r u p t l y p r o p o s e s to D i a n a , a r g u i n g h i s c a s e i n terms of economic m e r i t : . . . most women would c o n s i d e r i t a good o f f e r -an o f f e r w o r t h c o n s i d e r i n g . D i a n a . I have no doubt of t h a t . S i r J a b e z . F o r t y t h o u s a n d a y e a r , t o say n o t h i n g of t h e t i t l e . I t ' s b r a n d new, o f c o u r s e - but -D i a n a . . .. You w o u l d n ' t l i k e me t o a c c e p t you f o r what you've g o t . S i r J a b e z ( d o g g e d l y ) . I'm not so s u r e t h a t I s h o u l d n ' t . (42) Such an " u n b u s i n e s s l i k e ' r e f u s a l by D i a n a m ight be t h o u g h t c u r i o u s f r o m a c h a r a c t e r whose a u t h o r i n s i s t e d upon t h e economic i m p e r a t i v e o f m a r r i a g e . But we must not f o r g e t t h a t D i a n a of Dobson's i s a " r o m a n t i c " comedy and a l t h o u g h H a m i l t o n a r g u e s t h a t a woman's i n t e r e s t i n romance has a c o m m e r c i a l or b u s i n e s s a s p e c t ( m a r r i a g e b e i n g i n t e r p r e t e d by 148 h e r as a " p r o c e s s of b a r t e r " w i t h a woman e x c h a n g i n g " p o s s e s s i o n of her p e r s o n f o r the means of e x i s t e n c e " ( M a r r i a g e 2 7 ) ) she m a i n t a i n s from t h e o u t s e t t h a t a woman's i n t e r e s t i s not l i m i t e d t o economic c o n s i d e r a t i o n s but i s i n f a c t " d o u b l e - m o t i v e d . " In o t h e r words p h y s i c a l a t t r a c t i o n , l o v e , s e n t i m e n t have an i m p o r t a n t p l a c e . Such a view o f f e r s an i n t e r e s t i n g g l o s s on S i r J a b e z ' s n e a t b i f u r c a t i o n of s e n t i m e n t and b u s i n e s s i n t o s e p a r a t e compartments, s i n c e H a m i l t o n would a r g u e t h a t w h i l e m a r r i a g e i s a s s u r e d l y a b u s i n e s s m a t t e r f o r women, a f i n a n c i a l l y a d v a n t a g e o u s m a r r i a g e w i t h o u t l o v e ( o r f o r t h a t m a t t e r a l o v e match w i t h o u t a d e q u a t e money) i s t h e s t u f f of t r a g e d y . I t i s a p o s i t i o n she g i v e s d r a m a t i c s i g n i f i c a n c e i n a p l a y e n t i t l e d a p p r o p r i a t e l y enough A M a t t e r of Money, p r o d u c e d by E d i t h C r a i g and t h e P i o n e e r P l a y e r s a t the L i t t l e T h e a t r e on F e b r u a r y 9 and 11, 1 9 1 3 . ^ "A p a i n f u l l y d e p r e s s i n g " p i e c e ( S t a g e 13 Feb 1913 1 8 ) , i t " b r i n g s o ut w i t h much power an u n r o m a n t i c a s p e c t o f t h e p o p u l a r drama of husband, l o v e r and w i f e " ( S k e t c h 19 F e b r u a r y 1913 2 0 4 ) , t h a t " u n r o m a n t i c a s p e c t " b e i n g H a m i l t o n ' s i n s i s t e n c e upon the love/money nexus. The p l a y ' s p r o t a g o n i s t , a n o t h e r i l l - e d u c a t e d woman of 14 T h e r e seem to be no c o p i e s of t h i s p l a y s c r i p t i n e x i s t e n c e . S e a r c h e s t h r o u g h the L o r d C h a m b e r l a i n ' s P l a y s a t the B r i t i s h L i b r a r y and a t t h e E l l e n T e r r y House ( w h i c h a l s o h ouses r e c o r d s of E d i t h C r a i g ' s P i o n e e r P l a y e r s ) and an i n q u i r y to A i r M a r s h a l S i r L e s l i e Bower R.A.F. ( R e t d ) , e x e c u t o r of C i c e l y H a m i l t o n ' s e s t a t e , f a i l e d t o u n e a r t h any c o p i e s . My knowledge of t h e p l a y i s d e r i v e d f r o m c o n t e m p o r a r y r e v i e w s , newspaper p r e c i s , and t h e n o v e l (1916) v e r s i o n of t h e p l a y . 149 t h e m i d d l e - c l a s s h o p e l e s s l y u n e q u i p p e d to e a r n her l i v i n g i n any o t h e r way, r e m a i n s m a r r i e d to a man she l o a t h e s but ca n n o t a f f o r d to l e a v e , c h a n n e l l i n g her " t h w a r t e d e n e r g i e s " i n t o an a f f a i r w i t h a p o o r , m a r r i e d d o c t o r . When h e r husband (who d e s p i s e s h i s w i f e i n t u r n ) l e a r n s of her a f f a i r and c o n f r o n t s h e r w i t h h i s knowledge i n a b e a u t i f u l l y c o n t r i v e d cat-and-mouse s c e n e , she p r o m p t l y l e a v e s him f o r what she r o m a n t i c a l l y e n v i s i o n s w i l l be "open and unashamed f l i g h t w i t h a man who l o v e d and was l o v e d " ( 1 1 0 ) . U n f o r t u n a t e l y , her c o u n t r y d o c t o r must c o n f e s s a " s o r d i d f i n a n c i a l c o m p l i c a t i o n " (216) - he h a s n ' t the means t o f l e e . W i t h o u t s u p p o r t , f i n a n c i a l and o t h e r w i s e , the h e r o i n e c h o o s e s s u i c i d e a t t h e l e v e l c r o s s i n g . The c r i t i c s c o m p l a i n e d i n what becomes a l m o s t p r e d i c t a b l e f a s h i o n f o r women's p l a y s , o f t h e male c h a r a c t e r i z a t i o n . The E r a f o r i n s t a n c e , which i n t e r p r e t e d the p l a y as a s t u d y o f man's c u l p a b i l i t y , o b j e c t e d t h a t " t h e two p r i n c i p a l male c h a r a c t e r s a r e m i s e r a b l e w r e t c h e s : s c a r c e l y f a i r s a m p l e s , and t h e c o n d u c t o f b o t h a t t i m e s i s most i m p r o b a b l e " (15 Feb 1913 15) w h i l e b o t h t h e S t a g e and t h e S k e t c h were c u r i o u s l y i n s i s t e n t t h a t t h e d o c t o r would have r e s i s t e d t e m p t a t i o n , " p a r t i c u l a r l y s e e i n g t h a t the s i n i n the c a s e of a d o c t o r i s p e c u l i a r l y h e i n o u s " (19 Feb 1913 2 0 4 ) . Of c o u r s e h e i n o u s s i n and a t r a g i c denouement a r e not the s t u f f o f r o m a n t i c comedy, and i n D i a n a of Dobson's t h e h e r o i n e i s f r e e to r e j e c t h e r monied s u i t o r , who has " t h e 1 5 0 h e a r t l e s s n e s s t o g r i n d a f o r t u n e o ut of u n d e r p a i d work-g i r l s " ( 4 2 ) , b e c a u s e she does not l i k e him. And h i s i s n o t , a f t e r a l l , t h e o n l y p r o p o s a l she r e c e i v e s i n t h e e l e g a n t s i t t i n g room of t h e H o t e l E n g a d i n e , where, a c c o r d i n g t o the D r a m a t i c M i r r o r ' s r e v i e w of t h e New York p r o d u c t i o n , she "makes the men f a l l i n l o v e w i t h h e r " ( u n d a t e d c l i p p i n g , B i l l i e Rose C o l l ) . In a n i c e v a r i a t i o n on h e r own t h e o r y , H a m i l t o n p r o j e c t s what she c h a r a c t e r i z e s as women's " d o u b l e -m o t i v e d " i n t e r e s t i n romance and m a r r i a g e upon a male c h a r a c t e r , a l t h o u g h i t must be ack n o w l e d g e d t h a t i t i s V i c t o r ' s match-making aunt who f i r s t i n s i s t s upon h i s need to marry f o r money. Succumbing to her p r e s s u r e , the e x t r a v a g a n t C a p t a i n V i c t o r B r e t h e r t o n , who seems i n c a p a b l e of s u p p o r t i n g h i m s e l f on an un e a r n e d income of s i x hundred pounds a y e a r , s t u m b l e s out h i s c o n f e s s i o n of l o v e to the widow D i a n a on the p r o m i s e of her seeming f o r t u n e . And d e s p i t e V i c t o r ' s a c c u s a t i o n to the c o n t r a r y , D i a n a does not behave as a c o n v e n t i o n a l a d v e n t u r e s s - c u m - w o m a n - w i t h - a - p a s t . She does n o t , l i k e a Lady A u d l e y or a Mrs. Dane, manoeuvre him i n t o a m a r r i a g e p r o p o s a l o n l y t o have her scheme exposed by t h e p l a y ' s h e r o or r a i s o n n e u r . In f a c t , t h e r e i s no need f o r t h e l a t t e r ' s i n e v i t a b l e c r o s s - e x a m i n a t i o n a t a l l . B e f o r e she i s p r e p a r e d t o e n t e r t a i n V i c t o r ' s o f f e r ( s h e c o n s i d e r s i t unspoken i n the meantime) she r e v e a l s h e r s e l f i r o n i c a l l y as a "woman w i t h a f u t u r e ' and no p a s t . U n b i d d e n , she c o n f e s s e s t o b e i n g i n t r u t h a p e n n i l e s s s p i n s t e r "who has so f a r d e g r a d e d h e r s e l f as t o work f o r her own l i v i n g " ( 5 2 ) . When V i c t o r a d o p t s t h e p a r t of o u t r a g e d i n n o c e n t , however, D i a n a r o u n d s on him " w i t h an en e r g y a f i g h t i n g S u f f r a g e t t e might envy," a c c o r d i n g to Walbrook ( P a l l M a l l 13 Feb 1908 4 ) , condemning h i s h y p o c r i s y as w e l l as the u t t e r u s e l e s s n e s s of h i s l i f e and c o n c l u d i n g w i t h an a t t a c k upon the v a l u e s o f h i s c l a s s t h a t a number of r e v i e w e r s c h a r a c t e r i z e d as a form of " s o c i a l i s m " on stage''' 5: . . . f o r the l i f e of me, I c a n n o t u n d e r s t a n d how you and your l i k e have the i m p e r t i n e n c e to l o o k down on me and mine? When you t h o u g h t I had m a r r i e d an o l d man f o r h i s money, you c o n s i d e r e d t h a t I had a c t e d i n a seemly and womanly manner—when you l e a r n t t h a t , i n s t e a d of s e l l i n g m y s e l f i n the m a r r i a g e m a r k e t — I have e a r n e d my l i v i n g h o n e s t l y , you c o n s i d e r me i m p o s s i b l e . (52) The A c t ends w i t h a c h a l l e n g e t h a t w i l l r e s u l t i n a n o t h e r m e r g i n g o f male i n t o f e m a l e e x p e r i e n c e as D i a n a d a r e s V i c t o r t o l i v e as she has l i v e d : . . . t r y t h e e x p e r i m e n t f o r y o u r s e l f . S t a n d w i t h your back a g a i n s t t h e w a l l as I've s t o o d f o r the l a s t s i x y e a r s , and f i g h t the w o r l d f o r your d a i l y b r e a d on your own hand.... You 15 R e y n o l d s d e s c r i b e s i t as a " F a b i a n t r a c t " and "a b i t of B e r n a r d Shaw's p a r a s i t e t h e o r y " (16 Feb 19 0 8 ) . s i m p l y c o u l d n ' t do i t - you'd throw up the sponge i n a week. (53) In a c o n d e s c e n d i n g p a s s a g e t h a t r e v e a l s h i s own a n t i -f e m i n i s t b i a s Walbrook d e s c r i b e s t h e e f f e c t of t h e a c t ' s c o n c l u s i o n : " V i c t o r i o u s F e m i n i n i t y g a t h e r s i t s r u s t l i n g s k i r t s a r o u n d i t and sweeps t r i u m p h a n t l y from [ V i c t o r ' s ] p r e s e n c e ; and down comes the c u r t a i n upon A c t I I I , amid a c h e e r from t h e men i n the t h e a t r e and an e c s t a t i c c l a p p i n g from the l a d i e s , who have e n j o y e d s e e i n g one o f the t y r a n t s ( a u d i Mrs. P a n k h u r s t ! ) put i n h i s p l a c e ! " ( P a l l M a l l 13 Feb 1908 4 ) . When t h e c u r t a i n r i s e s on the p l a y ' s f i n a l a c t , y e t a n o t h e r t r a n s f o r m a t i o n has o c c u r r e d , and the posh d r a w i n g -room of a S w i s s h o t e l has been t r a n s l a t e d i n t o " t h a t p l a c e o f i l l - o m e n , the Thames Embankment" (IL N 22 Feb 1908 2 6 6 ) . We have, i t would a p p e a r , f o l l o w e d D i a n a ' s t h e a t r i c a l o d y s s e y from n a t u r a l i s t i c drama t h r o u g h s o c i e t y comedy to a r r i v e i n t h e r e a l m o f what one r e v i e w e r c h a r a c t e r i z e d as " t r a n s p o n t i n e melodrama." And c e r t a i n l y the s i g h t of " t h e Thames Embankment i n the s m a l l h o u r s of a November m o r n i n g " (55) c o n j u r e d up an e x t e n s i v e t r a d i t i o n ( l i t e r a r y and p i c t o r i a l as w e l l as t h e a t r i c a l ) w h i c h c o u p l e d t h a t l o c a l e w i t h g r i m s c e n e s of d e s p e r a t i o n and s u i c i d e "which d i s t u r b e d t h e i m a g i n a t i o n of t h e age" ( W o r l d 19 Jan 1909 9 7 ) . I t i s n o t , however, a h e l p l e s s , h o m e l e s s and h o p e l e s s D i a n a we 153 f i r s t d e t e c t amid t h a t r a g g e d p i l e o f human m i s e r y a s l e e p on an Embankment bench. I t i s V i c t o r , o n l y r e c e n t l y d e s c e n d e d t o " t h e h o p e l e s s l y unemployed c l a s s , " (55) who i s b e i n g p rodded a l o n g by P o l i c e C o n s t a b l e F e l l o w e s . The v e r y R o b e r t s o n i a n m e e t i n g of o l d s o l d i e r s t h a t f o l l o w s ( F e l l o w e s was i n V i c t o r ' s company o f the Welsh G u a r d s ) p r o v i d e s V i c t o r w i t h an o p p o r t u n i t y t o e x p l a i n why he i s " m a s q u e r a d i n g on t h i s Embankment i n t h e s e d e l e c t a b l e g a r m e n t s " ( 5 6 ) . He has n o t , as F e l l o w e s , i m m e d i a t e l y assumes, s u f f e r e d "'eavy f i n a n c i a l l o s s e s ; " r a t h e r he has t a k e n D i a n a up on her c h a l l e n g e . ^ P e r h a p s H a m i l t o n took an exchange between c h a r a c t e r s i n J o n e s ' s p l a y about Masq u e r a d e r s (1894) as f o d d e r f o r h e r own p l o t : D u l c i e . ... N e l l , Mr. Remon has an odd n o t i o n t h a t t h i s w o r l d i s n ' t r e a l . H e l e n . The c u r e f o r t h a t i s to e a r n h a l f - a - c r o w n a day and l i v e on i t . 16 In f a c t , i t was not unknown i n t h e p e r i o d f o r members of o t h e r c l a s s e s to " e x p e r i e n c e ' p o v e r t y . A c c o r d i n g to Pember Reeves i n her s t u d y o f the London p o o r , v a r i o u s m i d d l e - c l a s s p e o p l e c h o s e t o l i v e on 3d a day i n o r d e r to d e m o n s t r a t e t h a t i t was p o s s i b l e f o r a w o r k i n g man to do so as w e l l . Reeves i s r i g h t l y c r i t i c a l of s u c h " e x p e r i m e n t s ' which d i d no t r e q u i r e the w e l l - t o - d o p e r s o n to a c t u a l l y l i v e among the po o r , or to c u t down e x p e n s e s , o t h e r than f o r f o o d , to the l o w e s t p o s s i b l e l e v e l (Round About a Pound a Week 14 3 - 4 ) . Apropos t h i s p o i n t , A s h w e l l r e f e r s to t h r e e young women a c t o r s who d e c i d e d t o e x p e r i e n c e s t a r v i n g on the Thames embankment so they c o u l d d e p i c t i t more r e a l i s t i c a l l y on s t a g e . A c c o r d i n g l y , " a f t e r a good s u p p e r a t the C a r l t o n and h a v i n g p r o v i d e d t h e m s e l v e s w i t h a bag of buns, t h e y s a t t h r o u g h the summer n i g h t , e n d u r i n g t h e pangs of hunger, g a z i n g a t t h e Thames" ( M y s e l f a P l a y e r 1 2 0 ) . 154 D a v i d . Oh y e s , I know. Work i s r e a l . (82) So V i c t o r d i s c o v e r s , a l t h o u g h l a c k of work r a t h e r than work i t s e l f would more a c c u r a t e l y d e s c r i b e h i s e x p e r i e n c e of the r e a l w o r l d . As he s a y s to F e l l o w e s : . .. How on e a r t h does a man s e t about e a r n i n g h i s own l i v e l i h o o d ? I d on't mean a man who has been t h r o u g h a B oard S c h o o l and has had a t r a d e a t h i s f i n g e r s ' end, but a man who has muddled-t h r o u g h E t o n and O x f o r d and had p r a c t i c a l l y no e d u c a t i o n a t a l l ? From my e x p e r i e n c e of the l a s t few weeks, I s h o u l d say t h a t a l l t r a d e s were c l o s e d to the man whose e d u c a t i o n has c o s t h i s f a t h e r more t h a n f i v e h u n d r e d a y e a r . (57) What H a m i l t o n i s a t t e m p t i n g to do h e r e i s expose a w e l l -p l a c e d man of the p e r i o d t o the common e x p e r i e n c e of h i s m i d d l e and u p p e r - c l a s s s i s t e r s , whose s o - c a l l e d " e d u c a t i o n ' l e f t them e q u a l l y i n c a p a b l e of e a r n i n g an i n d e p e n d e n t l i v e l i h o o d . Her e f f o r t s were not u n i v e r s a l l y a p p r e c i a t e d . In f a c t , a number of c r i t i c s seemed g e n u i n e l y d i s t r e s s e d a t what they p e r c e i v e d to be V i c t o r ' s s i n g u l a r b e h a v i o u r . The r e v i e w e r f o r R e y n o l d s , f o r i n s t a n c e , d i s m i s s e d i t as " t o o a b s u r d , " a d d i n g , "Why d i d n ' t he f i t h i m s e l f f o r a t r a d e , or b u s i n e s s , or p r o f e s s i o n as he c o u l d e a s i l y have done? H i s c o n d u c t i s s h e e r l u n a c y " (16 Feb 1 9 08). Walbrook c o u l d e x p l a i n i t o n l y by i n s i s t i n g i r o n i c a l l y , g i v e n V i c t o r ' s d e s i r e to e x p e r i e n c e i t , t h a t " t h i s i s not r e a l l i f e . In the w o r l d of f a c t V i c t o r would have o b t a i n e d a b e r t h somewhere, or h i s f r i e n d s would have done i t f o r him" ( P a l l M a l l 13 Feb 1908 4 ) . As f o r D i a n a , who we l e a r n l a t e r i s i n l i k e s t r a i t e n e d c i r c u m s t a n c e s , Walbrook i s c h a r i t a b l e enough to add t h a t " w i t h her g i f t s o f s p e e c h , p r e s e n c e , and g e n e r a l c a p a b i l i t y , [ s h e ] would s u r e l y have found a s i t u a t i o n as a companion, o r , a t the w o r s t , as a g e n e r a l s e r v a n t . " I t i s d i f f i c u l t t o know whether t h e s e r e v i e w e r s were more d i s t u r b e d a t D i a n a ' s d e c i s i o n to 'waste' her l e g a c y or at V i c t o r ' s d e t e r m i n a t i o n not to spend h i s . In the words of the I l l u s t r a t e d S p o r t i n g and D r a m a t i c News, " i f t h e y were a c o u p l e - not a b s o l u t e l y born f o o l s - w i t h s u f f i c i e n t mind to m o d i f y t h e i r a c t i o n s , one would say t h a t i t i s as u n r e a s o n a b l e f o r a man w i t h s i x hundred pounds a y e a r to s t a r v e b e c a u s e a woman has l e c t u r e d him, as f o r the woman h e r s e l f who has known the t y r a n n y of g e n t e e l p o v e r t y , to throw away the e q u i v a l e n t of t w e l v e y e a r s ' e a r n i n g s i n a month's " b u r s t " " (7 March 1908 1 9 ) . But p e r h a p s t h i s r e v i e w e r has b e t r a y e d a more f u n d a m e n t a l o b j e c t i o n . I t might be s a i d t h a t what r e a l l y d i s t r e s s e d him as w e l l as o t h e r s was not so much V i c t o r ' s d e c i s i o n to s t r i k e out on h i s own, but t h a t he was prompted to do i t by a woman, worse y e t (as a n o t h e r c r i t i c p o i n t s o u t ) , by a woman who "has v a n i s h e d out of h i s l i f e . ...He i s m a r t y r i s i n g h i m s e l f f o r an i d e a - or f o r the a n g r y word of a g i r l whose own p o s i t i o n was not u n i m p e a c h a b l e " ( S t a g e 13 Feb 1908 2 3 ) . 156 Of c o u r s e , D i a n a does not d i s a p p e a r f o r e v e r from V i c t o r ' s l i f e . The l o n g arm of c o i n c i d e n c e i n t e r v e n e s , and w h i l e V i c t o r s t r u g g l e s to s l e e p , she r e - e n t e r s to ta k e a s e a t on the f a r c o r n e r o f h i s bench. Her a p p e a r a n c e i s s t r a n g e l y a l t e r e d , the a t t r a c t i v e P a r i s f r o c k s of the s e c o n d and t h i r d a c t s r e p l a c e d by t h e costume of the h a b i t u a l l y unemployed: "a shabby h a t and c o a t , a s h o r t s k i r t , muddy b o o t s and w o o l l e n g l o v e s w i t h h o l e s i n s e v e r a l of the f i n g e r - t i p s " ( 5 8 ) 1 7 , her l i f e ' s p o s s e s s i o n s wrapped i n "a s m a l l brown-paper p a r c e l . " One i s re m i n d e d of V i d a L e v e r i n g ' s c r y i n V o t e s f o r Women: "Some g i r l s t h i n k i t h a r d s h i p t o have to e a r n t h e i r l i v i n g . The h o r r o r i s not to be a l l o w e d t o " ( 5 1 ) . G i v e n s u c h a s c e n a r i o , one c o u l d be f o r g i v e n f o r a n t i c i p a t i n g a s e n s a t i o n a l m e l o d r a m a t i c c o n c l u s i o n i n wh i c h a d e s p a i r i n g woman r e s o l v e s to end i t 1 8 a l l w i t h a g r i m l e a p o f f the Embankment. But H a m i l t o n , l i k e h er p r e d e c e s s o r R o b e r t s o n , r e j e c t s s e n s a t i o n a l i s m i n 17 D i a n a ' s v a r i o u s changes of d r e s s (and a d d r e s s ) s e r v e as a comedic d e m o n s t r a t i o n of V i d a L e v e r i n g ' s a c c o u n t of how she exchanged h e r f i n e d r e s s e s f o r "an o l d gown and a tawdry h a t " i n o r d e r t o r e a l l y e x p e r i e n c e the p l i g h t of poor, homeless women: " Y o u ' l l n e v e r know how many t h i n g s a r e h i d d e n f r o m a woman i n good c l o t h e s . The b o l d , f r e e l o o k of a man a t a woman he b e l i e v e s to be d e s t i t u t e - you must f e e l t h a t l o o k on you b e f o r e you can u n d e r s t a n d - a good h a l f of h i s t o r y " ( V o t e s f o r Women 5 0 ) . 18 In f a c t , i n an i n t e r v i e w b e f o r e the p l a y opened A s h w e l l was a s k e d , " I see t h a t the Thames Embankment i s cho s e n as the s c e n e of t h e l a s t a c t . T h a t has r a t h e r a g r i m s u g g e s t i v e n e s s , t a k e n i n c o n n e c t i o n w i t h the f a c t t h a t Mr. Norman M c K i n n e l p l a y s the p a r t of a p o l i c e m a n . I hope D i a n a i s not d r i v e n to a t t e m p t s u i c i d e and i s r e s c u e d o n l y by the s t r o n g arm of the l a w ? " ( P a l l M a l l 8 Feb 1908) 157 f a v o u r of more r e s t r a i n e d comedy. We see not a b j e c t p o v e r t y but C i n d e r e l l a a f t e r the s t r o k e of t w e l v e . T h i s does not mean t h a t H a m i l t o n ' s p r o t a g o n i s t a d o p t s the p a s s i v e and a c q u i e s c e n t manner o f ' R o b e r t s o n ' s more c o n v e n t i o n a l s t a g e -h e r o i n e s ; even i n the f a c e of a d v e r s i t y D i a n a m a i n t a i n s an e n e r g e t i c and c o n f r o n t a t i o n a l " s u b - a c i d " s t y l e . Nor does the " i n v e r t e b r a t e " V i c t o r , whose c h r o n i c weakness drew a m u t t e r of d i s a p p r o v a l from c r i t i c s , s u d d e n l y d e v e l o p the s t a t u r e of the h e r o i c manly man. The p l a y does not end w i t h a m e l o d r a m a t i c w i n d f a l l ; n e i t h e r D i a n a nor V i c t o r r e a l i z e s a sum v a s t enough to f i n a n c e the way of l i f e t hey e n j o y e d i n the S w i s s A l p s . V i c t o r s i m p l y t a k e s a n o t h e r l o o k a t h i s c i r c u m s t a n c e s and r e a l i z e s t h a t f a r from b e i n g "a m i s e r a b l e p i t t a n c e , h a r d l y enough ... to l i v e upon" h i s s i x hundred pounds a y e a r i s "not o n l y enough f o r one to l i v e u p o n — i t ' s 19 ample f o r two" ( 6 2 ) * D i a n a i s a l s o i n v i t e d to take a s e c o n d l o o k at V i c t o r when, i n an i n v e r s i o n of a t t i t u d e s , he o f f e r s her " p r o p r i e t a r y r i g h t s i n a poor b a c k b o n e l e s s c r e a t u r e who n e v e r d i d a u s e f u l t h i n g i n h i s l i f e " ( 6 2 ) . And g i v e n t h a t D i a n a of Dobson's i s the work of a p l a y w r i g h t c o n s c i o u s l y a t t e m p t i n g to w r i t e from a woman's p e r s p e c t i v e , i t i s not s u r p r i s i n g t h a t the p r o t a g o n i s t goes on to d e m o n s t r a t e a " b u s i n e s s - l i k e " a t t i t u d e which H a m i l t o n a r g u e s 19 Such an income would put V i c t o r and D i a n a s q u a r e l y i n t o the r e a l m o f the m i d d l e - c l a s s . S t a t i s t i c s f o r the l a s t q u a r t e r of the 19th c e n t u r y p l a c e d a " p r o f e s s i o n a l man or t r a d e s m a n " e a r n i n g f i v e h u n d r e d pounds a y e a r i n t o the "upper m i d d l e c l a s s " ( B e s t 9 0 ) . 158 i n M a r r i a g e as a T r a d e i s an a s p e c t of l o v e f o r women g e n e r a l l y i g n o r e d i n t h a t b u l k of women's w r i t i n g t h a t m e r e l y m imics men's work. A c c o r d i n g l y , when V i c t o r p r o p o s e s D i a n a r e s p o n d s i n a way t h a t e x p o s e s her " d o u b l e - m o t i v e d " i n t e r e s t i n matrimony: D i a n a ( t u r n i n g on him a l m o s t f i e r c e l y ) . C a p t a i n B r e t h e r t o n - I'm h o m e l e s s and p e n n i l e s s - I h a v e n ' t - - t a s t e d f o o d f o r n e a r l y t w e l v e h o u r s -I've been h a l f s t a r v e d f o r d a y s . And now, i f I u n d e r s t a n d you a r i g h t - you o f f e r to make me your w i f e . B r e t h e r t o n . You do u n d e r s t a n d me a r i g h t . D i a n a . T h a t i s to s a y , you o f f e r me a home and what i s to me a f o r t u n e . B r e t h e r t o n . And m y s e l f . D i a n a ( l a u g h i n g h a r s h l y ) . And y o u r s e l f — p l e a s e don't i m a g i n e I f o r g e t t h a t i m p o r t a n t i t e m . . . . (62) Wi t h no o t h e r t r a d e r e a d i l y a v a i l a b l e to h e r , D i a n a a c c e p t s m a r r i a g e , a l t h o u g h i n d e f e r e n c e to the demands of the genre ( a s w e l l as t h e b o x - o f f i c e ? ) H a m i l t o n ' s " C i n d e r e l l a " a p p a r e n t l y e n t e r s " t h e h o u s e k e e p i n g t r a d e " i n o r d e r to l o v e as w e l l as t o l i v e . I q u a l i f y the l a t t e r s t a t e m e n t b e c a u s e i n the eyes of one r e v i e w e r a t l e a s t , D i a n a ' s l o v e f o r V i c t o r i s not s e l f - e v i d e n t : " I t i s not M i s s A s h w e l l ' s f a u l t t h a t the a u d i e n c e does not know e x a c t l y what to t h i n k of the g i r l and h e r masquerade. ... The p o s i t i o n would be 159 s i m p l i f i e d i f i t had been b r o u g h t o ut t h a t D i a n a i s i n l o v e w i t h B r e t h e r t o n . The a u t h o r does not f r e e D i a n a from t h e s u g g e s t i o n t h a t she i s a s e l f i s h , h a r d , and not o v e r -s c r u p u l o u s young woman" ( S t a g e 13 Feb 1908 2 3 ) . As f a r as t h i s c r i t i c i s c o n c e r n e d , D i a n a might w e l l be an a d v e n t u r e s s a f t e r a l l . S u s p i c i o n a l s o g r e e t e d the h e r o i n e ' s d e c i s i o n to marry i n H a m i l t o n ' s l a t e r comedy, J u s t to Get M a r r i e d , which was s u c c e s s f u l l y p r o d u c e d by y e t a n o t h e r woman, G e r t r u d e K i n g s t o n , a t the L i t t l e T h e a t r e , o p e n i n g on 8 November 2 0 1910. L i k e D i a n a of Dobson's t h i s p l a y i s c o n c e r n e d w i t h the c o m p u l s o r y n a t u r e of m a r r i a g e , n o t , however, from the p e r s p e c t i v e of a p e n n i l e s s working-woman but r a t h e r from the p o s i t i o n o f a woman who i s p a r t of " t h a t s m a l l but p r o m i n e n t c l a s s which w i l l n ot e d u c a t e i t s g i r l s and f i t them f o r e a r n i n g t h e i r own l i v i n g , and y e t i s u n a b l e to p r o v i d e them w i t h s u f f i c i e n t income to l i v e i n d e p e n d e n t l y i n the c o m f o r t to which t h e y have been a c c u s t o m e d " (Englishwoman 1910 2 1 4 ) . As such, i t s t a n d s i n marked c o n t r a s t to H u b e r t Henry D a v i e s ' A S i n g l e Man, which opened the same week at the P l a y h o u s e , and d e a l s i n comic f a s h i o n w i t h the e f f o r t s of a f o r t y y e a r o l d man to marry. One of t h o s e v y i n g ( u n s u c c e s s f u l l y of c o u r s e ) f o r h i s hand i s a c o n v e n t i o n a l s t a g e s p i n s t e r whose l a c k of s u c c e s s i s due, a c c o r d i n g to 20 The p l a y ran f o r 31 p e r f o r m a n c e s and was r e v i v e d i n J a n u a r y 1911 f o r a n o t h e r 30 p e r f o r m a n c e s . one r e v i e w e r , to D a v i e s 1 " m a s c u l i n e d i s l i k e of h e r " (Athenaeum 12 Nov 1910 6 0 1 ) . But " s t r i p [ t h a t s p i n s t e r ] . . . of her nauseous a f f e c t a t i o n s , h er r i d i c u l o u s p o s e s , and her g e n e r a l atmosphere of t h e a t r i c a l f a k e , and you have G e o r g i a n a V i c a r y , t h e v e r y r e a l woman who d o m i n a t e s M i s s H a m i l t o n ' s comedy" ( W o r l d 15 Nov 1910 7 2 6 ) . The poor and orphan e d G e o r g i a n a has been r a i s e d by w e l l - t o - d o r e l a t i o n s t o be "a h e l p l e s s i n c a p a b l e : " "What can I do - n o t h i n g , e x c e p t d r e s s m y s e l f and put my h a i r i n p i n s a t n i g h t and keep ray eyes open f o r a l i k e l y h u sband" ( 6 8 ) . B r o u g h t up " j u s t t o g e t m a r r i e d , " the t w e n t y - n i n e y e a r o l d G e o r g i a n a d e s p e r a t e l y c o n n i v e s ( w i t h the a i d of s a i d r e l a t i o n s ) to wr a n g l e a p r o p o s a l out of the man she c o n s i d e r s to be her l a s t hope. He does f i n a l l y p r o p o s e and she a c c e p t s b e c a u s e " I wanted t o g e t m a r r i e d - be c a u s e my r e l a t i o n s wanted me to get m a r r i e d . B e c a u s e e v e r y woman i s e x p e c t e d to get h e r s e l f a husband, somehow or a n o t h e r , and i s l o o k e d on as a m i s e r a b l e f a i l u r e i f she d o e s n ' t " ( 5 6 ) . U n f o r t u n a t e l y , her p r o s p e c t i v e husband r e a l l y l o v e s her and G e o r g i a n a , u n c o m f o r t a b l e w i t h h i s amorous e f f u s i v e n e s s and g u i l t - r i d d e n by her own me r c e n a r y i n t e r e s t , b r e a k s o f f the engagement and r e s o l v e s t o f l e e to London to e a r n her own l i v i n g . The s p e c t r e of V i d a L e v e r i n g looms l a r g e h e r e . As c o i n c i d e n c e would have i t , however, G e o r g i a n a meets her d e s p o n d e n t s u i t o r on t h e t r a i n p l a t f o r m and the p l a y c o n c l u d e s w i t h her m a r r i a g e p r o p o s a l to him. I t was a "happy e n d i n g ' t h a t 161 c a u s e d a c e r t a i n amount of c r i t i c a l d e b a t e . T h e r e were t h o s e who f o u n d t h e c o n c l u s i o n weak and u n c o n v i n c i n g , r a t h e r p e r f u n c t o r i l y t a c k e d onto what was i n t r u t h " t h e t r a g e d y of the undowered poor r e l a t i o n , who l o o k s to m a r r i a g e t o s e c u r e her i n d e p e n d e n c e " ( E r a 12 November 1910 2 3 ) . T h e r e were o t h e r s who f o u n d G e o r g i a n a ' s last-moment avowal o f l o v e " p e r f e c t l y p l a u s i b l e , " i n f a c t d i c t a t e d by the demands of the p l a y ' s g e n r e : "To have s e n t o f f the unhappy G e o r g i a n a to s t a r v e i n London, o r t o have d r a g g e d her back t o her i n s u f f e r a b l e r e l a t i o n s , would have been l i k e s t u f f i n g seaweed i n t o a b i s q u e on t h e p l e a of r e a l i s m " ( E nglishwoman 1910 2 1 4 ) . And f i n a l l y t h e r e were t h o s e who s u s p e c t e d the h e r o i n e ' s l o v e f o r t h e h e r o , a l t h o u g h a c c o r d i n g to the r e v i e w e r f o r t h e S k e t c h , s u c h d o u b t s about G e o r g i a n a ' s s i n c e r i t y r e n d e r e d the c o n c l u s i o n of J u s t to Get M a r r i e d " c r u e l , c y n i c a l and l e g i t i m a t e " (16 Oct 1911 1 7 0 ) . D i a n a o f Dobson's, w h i c h e n j o y e d a g e n e r a l l y more f a v o u r a b l e c r i t i c a l r e c e p t i o n , n e v e r t h e l e s s e n g e n d e r e d a s i m i l a r d e b a t e o v e r i t s p u r p o s e and g e n r e . Some r e v i e w e r s p r a i s e d what t h e y c o n s i d e r e d t o be H a m i l t o n ' s " i n g e n i o u s b l e n d " of s o c i a l c r i t i c i s m and romance to p r o d u c e a " t h i n k i n g - m a n ' s ' comedy. The I l l u s t r a t e d London News urged p l a y - g o e r s t o a t t e n d a work t h a t would make them " t h i n k and l a u g h " (22 Feb 1908 266) w h i l e the W o r l d , a d o p t i n g a more c o n d e s c e n d i n g t o n e t o w a r d s London a u d i e n c e s , i n s i s t e d : " I t i s a c o m p l e t e s u c c e s s i n t h a t i t h o l d s the u n s o p h i s t i c a t e d w i t h i t s **roe-mance, ' w h i l e t h e more h a r d e n e d p l a y g o e r i s amused and i n t e r e s t e d by t h e c l e v e r t o u c h e s which s e r v e to h i d e the framework: by the humour, the s a t i r e , the s t u d y of c h a r a c t e r , t h e c r i t i c i s m o f l i f e " (19 Jan 1909 9 7 ) . O t h e r s s u s p e c t e d t h e v e r a c i t y of the p l a y ' s c o n c l u s i o n , but condoned i t as p a r t and p a r c e l o f H a m i l t o n ' s f a i r y - t a l e f o r m a t . The r e d o u b t a b l e c r i t i c f o r the S t a g e on the o t h e r hand i n s i s t e d upon s e e i n g t h e p l a y by the l i g h t of n a t u r a l i s t t h e a t r e and l o o k e d f o r w a r d t o a b l e a k f u t u r e : "The a u d i e n c e , a t t h e back of i t s mind, must have a vague u n e a s i n e s s about the s u i t a b l e n e s s of t h e match and the l i k e l i h o o d of h a p p i n e s s . The m a r r i e d p a i r , t o o , w i l l have to r e c k o n w i t h B r e t h e r t o n ' s f a m i l y , e s p e c i a l l y w i t h t h e a u n t . . . " (13 Feb 1908 2 3 ) . A more i n t r i g u i n g c o m p l a i n t was l o d g e d by two r e v i e w e r s who ar g u e d t h a t H a m i l t o n ' s p l a y had i n e s s e n c e b e t r a y e d the l a b o u r c a u s e . A c c o r d i n g to Walbrook, u n t i l the end of the t h i r d a c t D i a n a o f Dobson's " i s a r a t h e r r o u g h l y composed t r a c t on the h a r s h c o n d i t i o n s of l a b o u r and i g n o m i n y of pampered l a z i n e s s , " but the f o u r t h a c t " a r b i t r a r i l y as w e l l as s e n t i m e n t a l l y " d i s m i s s e s t h e s e i s s u e s and t h e i r r a m i f i c a t i o n s by o p t i n g to save D i a n a t h r o u g h m a r r i a g e to a man and h i s a d e q u a t e u n e a r n e d income. The c r i t i c f o r t h e I l l u s t r a t e d S p o r t i n g and D r a m a t i c News goes f u r t h e r . He m a i n t a i n s t h a t a l t h o u g h the p l a y i s i n t e n d e d t o ar g u e the r i g h t s of l a b o u r a g a i n s t the a b u s e s of c a p i t a l i t a c t u a l l y makes the o p p o s i t e c a s e by f a i l i n g to p o r t r a y " c a p i t a l 163 . . . [ a s ] u n r e a s o n a b l e and l a b o u r s e n s i b l e and w o r t h y " (7 March 1908 1 9 ) . To i n s i s t however t h a t the p l a y s u f f e r s b e c a u s e i t does  n o t , i n m e l o d r a m a t i c f a s h i o n , d i v i d e l a b o u r and c a p i t a l i n t o c l e a r l y demarked camps of good and e v i l or b e c a u s e i t does, i n m e l o d r a m a t i c f a s h i o n , s i d e - s t e p such i s s u e s by means of a l i m i t e d and s p e c i f i c s o l u t i o n , i s to i g n o r e H a m i l t o n ' s c h o i c e of g e n r e as w e l l as the p l a y ' s f e m i n i s t component. F o r D i a n a of Dobson's i s not so much an a t t a c k upon c l a s s or c a p i t a l i s m as a c o m e d i c d e m o n s t r a t i o n of H a m i l t o n ' s c l a i m " t h a t the n a r r o w i n g down of woman's hopes and a m b i t i o n s to the s o l e p u r s u i t and s p h e r e of m a r r i a g e i s one of t h e p r i n c i p a l c a u s e s of the v a r i o u s d i s a b i l i t i e s , economic and o t h e r w i s e , under w h i c h she l a b o u r s . . . " ( M a r r i a g e 2 2 ) . H a m i l t o n i s c o n c e r n e d w i t h d e p i c t i n g the c o n s e q u e n c e s f o r women of a p a t r i a r c h a l h i e r a r c h y which t r e a t e d them as mere a d j u n c t s t o men and, by i n s i s t i n g t h a t t h e i r p r o p e r r o l e was m a r r i a g e and p r o p e r p l a c e t h e home, saw no r e a s o n to e d u c a t e them t o e a r n t h e i r own l i v e l i h o o d . I f , however, a woman f a i l e d t o s e c u r e s a i d husband and home and was f o r c e d t o s u p p o r t h e r s e l f , i m m e d i a t e l y r e n d e r i n g her s o c i a l p o s i t i o n u n c e r t a i n , she f o u n d t h a t v i r t u a l l y a l l work a v a i l a b l e to her was i n t e l l e c t u a l l y and e m o t i o n a l l y u n r e w a r d i n g , low i n s t a t u s and n o t o r i o u s l y i l l - p a i d , " t h e custom of c o n s i d e r i n g her work as w o r t h l e s s ( f r o m an economic p o i n t of view) [ w h i c h ] o r i g i n a t e d i n t h e home, . . . [ h a v i n g ] f o l l o w e d her i n t o the w o r l d " ( M a r r i a g e 9 6 ) . H a m i l t o n a r g u e d t h a t women as a c l a s s were b o t h s o c i a l l y and e c o n o m i c a l l y h a n d i c a p p e d i n a c u l t u r e t h a t p r i v i l e g e d men. W i t h i n such a c u l t u r e money gave power, as H a m i l t o n i s a t p a i n s to d e m o n s t r a t e i n D i a n a  o f Dobson' s, p r o v i d i n g women w i t h an i n d e p e n d e n c e from men o t h e r w i s e u n r e a l i z a b l e . U n f o r t u n a t e l y , most women l a c k e d such monied power and were, by v a r i o u s s t r a t e g i e s of a p a t r i a r c h a l s y s t e m , l a r g e l y p r e v e n t e d from r e a l i s i n g i t (one i s reminded i n t h i s r e g a r d of the d i s c r i m i n a t o r y i n h e r i t a n c e l e g i s l a t i o n o f the p e r i o d ) . W i t h most of the work a v a i l a b l e to them a b s o l u t e l y u n r e w a r d i n g and many b e t t e r o c c u p a t i o n s b a r r e d t o them t h r o u g h custom, r e g u l a t i o n or l a c k of e d u c a t i o n , women had l i t t l e c h o i c e but to c o n s i d e r " m a r r i a g e as a t r a d e . " I t i s a c r e d i t to H a m i l t o n ' s c r a f t s m a n s h i p t h a t i n the l a s t a c t of D i a n a of Dobson's she i s a b l e to e x p l o i t t h e c o n v e n t i o n s of r o m a n t i c comedy ( w h i c h d i c t a t e some form of m a r i t a l r e s o l u t i o n ) to o f f e r a f e m i n i s t c r i t i q u e on m a r r i a g e i t s e l f . In a f i n a l t r i b u t e to her p r e d e c e s s o r , Tom R o b e r t s o n , H a m i l t o n c o n c l u d e s her p l a y w i t h a l i t e r a l c up-a n d - s a u c e r t a b l e a u o f t h e happy c o u p l e e n j o y i n g s a n d w i c h e s and c o f f e e p e r c h e d on a bench on the Thames Embankment. Yet even t h i s f i n a l image i s p r o b l e m a t i c . Are we meant to view i t w i t h o p t i m i s m ( a f t e r a l l i t i s V i c t o r who f e t c h e s the c o f f e e ) or r e a d i t i r o n i c a l l y ? One c o u l d c e r t a i n l y a r g u e t h a t i n the manner o f R o b e r t s o n , the v a l u e s of the home have s i m p l y f o l l o w e d D i a n a t o the r i v e r ' s edge. C h a p t e r IV E l i z a b e t h B a k e r ' s C h a i n s : "You're m a r r i e d . ... You're s e t t l e d . " "Why s h o u l d a new woman want t o g e t m a r r i e d ? " The q u e s t i o n , which i s r a i s e d so o b v i o u s l y i n D i a n a o f Dobson's, i s m o c k i n g l y p u t by S i r R i c h a r d Kato Q.C. t o E l a i n e S h r i m p t o n i n J o n e s ' s 1894 comedy, The Case o f R e b e l l i o u s  S u san. A f i g u r e of r i d i c u l e , t h i s p l a y ' s "New Woman' i s , a c c o r d i n g t o K a t o , t o t a l l y u n f i t f o r m a r r i a g e w i t h o u t p r e l i m i n a r y i n s t r u c t i o n i n b o t h h o u s e k e e p i n g and c o o k e r y . When E l a i n e p r o c l a i m s t h a t " T h e r e i s an immense f u t u r e f o r Woman," Kato i n t e r r u p t s t o f i n i s h h e r s e n t e n c e a c c o r d i n g t o the c o n v e n t i o n a l wisdom o f h i s day: At her own f i r e s i d e . T h e r e i s an immense f u t u r e f o r women as w i v e s and m o t h e r s , and a v e r y l i m i t e d f u t u r e f o r them i n any o t h e r c a p a c i t y . W h i l e you l a d i e s w i t h o u t p a s s i o n s - or w i t h d i s t o r t e d and d e f e a t e d p a s s i o n s - a r e r a v i n g and t r u m p e t i n g a l l o v e r t h e c o u n t r y , t h a t w i s e , g r i m , 166 o l d grandmother of us a l l , Dame N a t u r e , i s s i m p l y s n a p p i n g h e r f i n g e r s a t you and your new epochs and new movements. Go home! ... N a t u r e ' s d a r l i n g woman i s a s t a y - a t - h o m e woman, a woman who wants to be a good w i f e and a good mother, and c a r e s v e r y l i t t l e f o r a n y t h i n g e l s e . (154) In J o n e s ' s p l a y t h e "new woman' and m a r r i a g e can o n l y engage i n a comic d i a l e c t i c . D u r i n g the E d w a r d i a n age, however, c e r t a i n f e m i n i s t women p l a y w r i g h t s , i n c l u d i n g E l i z a b e t h B a k e r , began t o t a k e s e r i o u s l y K a t o ' s c y n i c a l q u e s t i o n t o E l a i n e . I n h e r c r i t i c a l l y a c c l a i m e d p l a y , C h a i n s , Baker e a r n e s t l y a d d r e s s e s t h e i s s u e o f m a r r i a g e , e x p a n d i n g her i n v e s t i g a t i o n t o c o n s i d e r , f r o m a f e m a l e v a n t a g e p o i n t , why men, as w e l l as women, c h o o s e to marry. As s u c h , her p l a y t a k e s i t s p l a c e among a s u b - g e n r e o f l a t e V i c t o r i a n and E d w a r d i a n works t h a t m ight c o n v e n i e n t l y be l a b e l l e d " c o n d i t i o n of m a r r i a g e ' p l a y s . O r i g i n a t i n g w i t h J o n e s ' s s o c i a l comedies o f t h e 1890s, Case of R e b e l l i o u s Susan and The L i a r s ( 1 8 9 7 ) , t h e t r a d i t i o n c u l m i n a t e s i n su c h v a r i o u s E d w a r d i a n works as Shaw's G e t t i n g M a r r i e d ( 1 9 0 8 ) , a r o u n d t a b l e d i s c u s s i o n o f m a r r i a g e by a number o f i t s d e v o t e e s and c r i t i c s , and P i n e r o ' s M i d - C h a n n e l (1909) and G a l s w o r t h y ' s The F u g i t i v e ( 1 9 1 3 ) , b o t h b l e a k s t u d i e s o f u p p e r - c l a s s m a r i t a l d i s h a r m o n y c o n c l u d i n g w i t h t h e s u i c i d e s of the p l a y s ' r e s p e c t i v e w i v e s . The " m a r r i a g e p r o b l e m " ( a s i t was r e f e r r e d t o i n a r e v i e w i n t h e NUWSS p a p e r , The Common Cause, 15 A p r i l 1909 11) was a m a t t e r o f s e r i o u s debate i n t h e p o p u l a r p r e s s as w e l l . A work l i k e Modern  M a r r i a g e and How t o Bear i t by Maud C h u r t o n Braby (1909) fo u n d i t s e l f on t h e s h e l f a l o n g s i d e H a m i l t o n ' s M a r r i a g e as  a T r a d e . E d i t o r i a l s and L e t t e r s t o t h e E d i t o r on t h e i s s u e were a l s o r i f e i n t h e p e r i o d ' s v a r i o u s n e w s p a p e r s , w i t h such a l e a d e r as " M a r r i a g e : C h o i c e or N e c e s s i t y " ( w h i c h c o u l d r e a d i l y s e r v e as a s u b - t i t l e to B a k e r ' s C h a i n s ) making i t s a p p e a r a n c e i n t h e pages of The Common Cause i n May 1912. L i k e E l i z a b e t h R o b i n s and C i c e l y H a m i l t o n , E l i z a b e t h Baker worked f o r t h e s u f f r a g e movement. A p p a r e n t l y s y m p a t h e t i c t o t h e Women's Freedom League, she a p p e a r s by name on the l i s t o f s u b s c r i b e r s i n c l u d e d i n t h e WFL's 1908 An n u a l R e p o r t . B a k e r was a l s o a c t i v e l y i n v o l v e d w i t h the WWSL, h e r o n e - a c t p l a y E d i t h ( s e e Ch I I ) b e i n g p e r f o r m e d as p a r t of a f u n d - r a i s i n g e v e n t o r g a n i z e d by t h a t League i n 1912. L i k e i t s companion p i e c e s i n t h e s u f f r a g e r e p e r t o i r e , E d i t h r e p r e s e n t s an a t t a c k upon c o n v e n t i o n a l s t a g e p o r t r a i t s of women as e i t h e r p a s s i v e h e r o i n e s or a s s e r t i v e v i l l a i n e s s e s d e f i n e d p r i m a r i l y i n terms of t h e i r r e l a t i o n s h i p s w i t h men. Shaw o f c o u r s e had a l r e a d y begun to e x p e r i m e n t w i t h a s s e r t i v e h e r o i n e s i n the 1890s, a l t h o u g h i n h i s p l a y s s u c h c h a r a c t e r s u s u a l l y d i s p l a y t h e i r a g g r e s s i o n i n s u c h t r a d i t i o n a l a r e a s of f e m a l e e n d e a v o u r as m a r r i a g e and motherhood. One i s r e m i n d e d o f B l a n c h e S a r t o r i u s , J u l i a C r a v e n , R a i n a P e t k o f f , G l o r i a C l a n d o n and C a n d i d a , to name j u s t a few. S h a v i a n women who i n s t e a d w i s h t o c h a n n e l c e l i b a t e e n e r g y s o l e l y i n t o the male s p h e r e of the work-p l a c e ( V i v i a n Warren and P r o s e r p i n e G a r n e t t s p r i n g to mind) a r e doused w i t h a u t h o r i a l a m b i v a l e n c e . By way of c o n t r a s t , B a k e r ' s E d i t h p r o v i d e s a c l e a r and p o s i t i v e a l t e r n a t i v e f o r women unhappy w i t h a s o c i e t y t h a t saw them as mere a d j u n c t s t o t h e i r h usbands, c o n f i n i n g them to the home t o p e r f o r m the s u i t a b l y f e m i n i n e l a b o u r o f housework and c h i l d c a r e . As a t h e a t r i c a l r o l e , E d i t h i s a l s o B a k e r ' s c o n t r i b u t i o n to the campaign to p r o d u c e more v a r i e d , l e s s s t e r e o t y p i c a l women's p a r t s . A s u c c e s s f u l u n m a r r i e d businesswoman, E d i t h o b v i o u s l y e n j o y s t h e i n d e p e n d e n c e t h a t s e l f - e m p l o y m e n t and s p i n s t e r h o o d p r o v i d e h e r . N e i t h e r an employee, w i f e nor mother, she a v o i d s t h e s u b j u g a t i o n t o a dominant male w i l l t h a t i s so o f t e n p r e s e n t e d i n s u f f r a g e t h e a t r e as an i n e v i t a b l e a s p e c t o f t h o s e " o c c u p a t i o n s ' . In f a c t , i n her b u s i n e s s n e g o t i a t i o n s t h r o u g h o u t the c o u r s e o f t h e p l a y , E d i t h i n v a r i a b l y b e s t s the men. As su c h she s t a n d s i n marked c o n t r a s t t o t h e o t h e r more c o n v e n t i o n a l women of the p l a y , who as w i f e , widow, mother or f i a n c e e , a r e p r e s e n t e d as h e l p l e s s v i c t i m s o f the v a g a r i e s of t h e i r r e s p e c t i v e male p a r t n e r s ' w i l l s . Baker d i d n o t , of c o u r s e , r e s t r i c t her p l a y w r i t i n g to p o l e m i c a l t r a c t s d e s i g n e d f o r p e r f o r m a n c e b e f o r e s u f f r a g e s y m p a t h i z e r s . She t u r n e d t o her own e x p e r i e n c e as a member 169 o f the low e r m i d d l e - c l a s s to p r o v i d e s u b j e c t - m a t t e r f o r p l a y s w r i t t e n f o r t h e w i d e r a u d i e n c e s of the a d m i t t e d l y more e x p e r i m e n t a l wing of t h e c o m m e r c i a l t h e a t r e . (When i t a p p e a r s i n a c c o u n t s of E d w a r d i a n t h e a t r e , her name i s g e n e r a l l y l i n k e d t o i n n o v a t i v e r e p e r t o r y companies i n London, M a n c h e s t e r and Birmingham.) Born i n London, Baker began her c a r e e r as a c a s h i e r but soon s e t t l e d upon work as a s t e n o g r a p h e r and p r i v a t e s e c r e t a r y , w r i t i n g p l a y s i n her l e i s u r e h o u r s ( B a r r e t t H. C l a r k 306).''' She was e n c o u r a g e d by the p o s i t i v e r e c e p t i o n awarded her f i r s t p i e c e , a o n e - a c t p l a y about c r o s s - c l a s s a l l i a n c e e n t i t l e d B e a s t l y P r i d e ( o r i g i n a l l y A Q u e s t i o n o f C a s t e ) , i n i t i a l l y p e r f o r m e d i n 1907 by the C r o y d o n R e p e r t o r y T h e a t r e . L i k e a l l o f B a k e r ' s p l a y s , i t was c r i t i c i z e d as " l a c k i n g i n i n c i d e n t " ( E r a 1 A p r i l 1914 14) as t h a t was u n d e r s t o o d by c r i t i c s s c h o o l e d on melodrama and t h e well-made p l a y . I t s s t a t i c n a t u r e , however, h e l p e d f o c u s a t t e n t i o n upon the work's i n n o v a t i v e l o w e r - c l a s s r e v e r s a l of R o b e r t s o n ' s C a s t e . T h a t p l a y , a l o n g w i t h s u c h l a t e r v a r i a t i o n s as T r e l a w n y of t h e " W e l l s " and The Second Mrs. T a n q u e r a y , a l l o w s t h a t s p e c i a l c i r c u m s t a n c e s can a r i s e t h a t w i l l p e r m i t women of l e s s e r c a s t e to be 2 r a i s e d up t h r o u g h m a r r i a g e w i t h men of h i g h e r c l a s s . T h i s 1 A c c o r d i n g to t h e E r a , Ba k e r was a t y p i s t w o r k i n g f o r a C i t y F i r m d u r i n g t h e t i m e she wrote C h a i n s . 2 Other E d w a r d i a n p l a y s t h a t a d d r e s s t h a t p e r i o d ' s p r e o c c u p a t i o n w i t h s u c h c r o s s c l a s s a l l i a n c e s i n c l u d e P i n e r o ' s Mind t h e P a i n t G i r l (1913) which r e c o r d s w i t h an a m b i v a l e n t eye t h e u n i o n o f a s h o w - g i r l and a p e e r , and St John H a n k i n ' s The C a s s i l i s Engagement (1907) w h i c h e x p o s e s amounts to what we m ight c a l l the " c a s e a t h a n d 1 s c e n a r i o , i n which c h a r a c t e r s do n o t so much oppose the s o c i a l s t a t u s quo as d e s i r e t h a t e x c e p t i o n s be made f o r t h e i r own p a r t i c u l a r s i t u a t i o n s . B e a s t l y P r i d e , however, c o n s i d e r s the c o n t r a r y s i t u a t i o n , t h a t o f a l o w e r - m i d d l e c l a s s d a u g h t e r who w i s h e s to marry a w o r k i n g c l a s s b u i l d e r i n her f a t h e r ' s w o r k y a r d . A l t h o u g h t h e p a r e n t s i n i t i a l l y o b j e c t t o the would-be f i a n c e ' s l o w e r s t a t u s t h e y come t o r e a l i z e t h a t t h e i r o b j e c t i o n s a r e b a s e d on n o t h i n g but " b e a s t l y p r i d e " and t h e p l a y c o n c l u d e s w i t h an i n v i t a t i o n t h a t he come to t e a . U n l i k e G r a n v i l l e B a r k e r ' s h i s t o r i c a l p l a y , The M a r r y i n g  o f Ann L e e t e (1899; 1902) i n w h i c h an 1 8 t h c e n t u r y woman r e j e c t s her e f f e t e and d e c l i n i n g a r i s t o c r a t i c f a m i l y and w i l l f u l l y o p t s t o r e t u r n t o her r o o t s as i t were by m a r r y i n g the g a r d e n e r , John Abud, t h e r e i s l i t t l e s e n s e i n B e a s t l y  P r i d e of the woman i n e v i t a b l y " s h i n n y i n g down the s o c i a l l a d d e r " to be where t h e man i s . In B a k e r ' s a d m i t t e d l y s m a l l - s c a l e v i g n e t t e o f modern l i f e , the movement i s towards the a c c e p t a n c e of the w o r k i n g man i n t o the woman's l o w e r -m i d d l e c l a s s f a m i l y , t h e p l a y c h a r t i n g a woman's s u c c e s s f u l t h e r u t h l e s s but s u c c e s s f u l e f f o r t s of an upper c l a s s mother to f o r e s t a l l her s o n ' s m a r r i a g e to a w o r k i n g c l a s s woman. Fo r d i s c u s s i o n of t h e s e p l a y s see Jan McDonald's c h a p t e r on H a n k i n i n The 'New Drama' 1900-1914 and J o e l K a p l a n ' s " E d w a r d i a n P i n e r o . " 3 J o e l K a p l a n u s e s the p h r a s e t o d e s c r i b e P i n e r o ' s s h i f t i n f o c u s from upper c l a s s s o c i e t y i n h i s works of t h e 1880s and 90s to m i d d l e c l a s s p r o v i n c i a l i s m i n s u c h a work as The  T h u n d e r b o l t (1908) ("Edwardian P i n e r o " ) . d i s r u p t i o n of a male d o m i n a t e d s o c i a l h i e r a r c h y , a l b e i t by means of the c o n v e n t i o n a l d e v i c e of matrimony. M a r r i a g e i t s e l f comes under B a k e r ' s p e n e t r a t i n g gaze i n C h a i n s , her f i r s t f u l l - l e n g t h p l a y . P r o d u c e d by the P l a y A c t o r s a t the C o u r t T h e a t r e f o r a s i n g l e m a t i n e e p e r f o r m a n c e on 18 A p r i l 1909, t h e p l a y was r e v i v e d the f o l l o w i n g y e a r by D i o n B o u c i c a u l t as p a r t of C h a r l e s Frohman's r e p e r t o r y e x p e r i m e n t a t t h e Duke of Y o r k ' s . The s e a s o n , under G r a n v i l l e B a r k e r ' s a r t i s t i c d i r e c t i o n , p r o v e d a f i n a n c i a l d i s a s t e r , c l o s i n g a f t e r o n l y s e v e n t e e n weeks, but d u r i n g t h a t b r i e f t i m e and i n t h e company of such p l a y s as The Madras House and G a l s w o r t h y ' s J u s t i c e , C h a i n s r a n f o r 14 of t h e s e a s o n ' s 128 p e r f o r m a n c e s . The l a s t p l a y i n t r o d u c e d d u r i n g the s e a s o n , C h a i n s was s u r p a s s e d i n number of p e r f o r m a n c e s by j u s t t h r e e p l a y s , G r a n v i l l e B a r k e r ' s and Housman's P r u n e l l a (17 p e r f o r m a n c e s ) , J u s t i c e (26) and a r e v i v a l of T r e l a w n y of t h e " W e l l s " ( 4 2 ) . T h e r e i s not much e v i d e n c e of the c i r c u m s t a n c e s of the p l a y ' s c o m p o s i t i o n and what l i t t l e does e x i s t i s p r o b l e m a t i c . A c c o r d i n g t o K n o b l o c k , Kingsway p l a y - r e a d e r and 4 d r a m a t i s t i n h i s own r i g h t , C h a i n s was t h e p r o d u c t of h i s " u r g i n g [ B a k e r ] ... t o w r i t e a a t h r e e - a c t p l a y on a s u b j e c t of her own e x p e r i e n c e - her own w o r l d " ( 9 0 ) . K n o b l o c k w r i t e s t h a t a l t h o u g h he "begged" Lena A s h w e l l to a c c e p t the p l a y 4 K n o b l o c k c o - a u t h o r e d w i t h A r n o l d B e n n e t t the h i g h l y s u c c e s s f u l M i l e s t o n e s ( 1 9 1 2 ) . 172 f o r p r o d u c t i o n a t h e r t h e a t r e she r e f u s e d b e c a u s e i t c o n t a i n e d no p a r t s u i t e d t o her t a l e n t s . K n o b l o c k t h e n c l a i m s to have s e n t t h e p l a y to E d i t h C r a i g who, he s a y s , p r o d u c e d i t under t h e a u s p i c e s of the P i o n e e r P l a y e r s . K n o b l o c k p r o c e e d s : " I met M i s s Baker l a t e r on a t some r e c e p t i o n - but she d i d not remember me. When I r e c a l l e d m y s e l f t o h e r , she seemed e q u a l l y vague. I c o u l d n ' t h e l p b e i n g a l i t t l e s u r p r i s e d . I t has t a k e n me a l o n g time i n l i f e t o r e a l i z e t h a t p e o p l e r e s e n t b e i n g put under o b l i g a t i o n s t o o t h e r s " ( 9 0 ) . What c o u l d be i n t e r p r e t e d as u n g r a c i o u s b e h a v i o u r on t h e p a r t of Baker becomes more e x p l i c a b l e w i t h t h e knowledge t h a t i t was not C r a i g and t h e P i o n e e r P l a y e r s but J . F a r r e n S o u t a r and the P l a y A c t o r s , who f i r s t p r o d u c e d th e p l a y . The P l a y A c t o r s i n c l u d e d C i c e l y H a m i l t o n and I n e z Bensusan on i t s C o u n c i l , and was f o u n ded i n 1907 to mount Sunday p e r f o r m a n c e s of S h a k e s p e a r e , p l a y s i n t r a n s l a t i o n and new works by E n g l i s h d r a m a t i s t s ( D i c k i n s o n 1 6 0 ) . I t would seem t h a t K n o b l o c k ' s and not B a k e r ' s memory was a t f a u l t , r e n d e r i n g s u s p e c t as w e l l h i s c l a i m e d r o l e i n t h e p l a y ' s g e n e s i s . I t i s c e r t a i n , however, t h a t the l o w e r m i d d l e - c l a s s w o r l d of C h a i n s d i d m i r r o r B a k e r ' s own p o s i t i o n i n E n g l a n d ' s c l a s s h i e r a r c h y , 5 her t r u e - t o - l i f e d e p i c t i o n of i t s l i v i n g 5 A c c o r d i n g t o H a m i l t o n F y f e , Baker was the f i r s t p l a y w r i g h t to r e a l l y make s o m e t h i n g of t h e c l e r k as a c h a r a c t e r i n drama. He adds t h a t "two or t h r e e of our l e a d i n g w r i t e r s f o r t h e s t a g e began l i f e , I b e l i e v e , i n C l e r k d o m , but they would not f o r the l i f e o f them make use of t h e i r knowledge i n 1 7 3 c o n d i t i o n s e a r n i n g h e r , a c c o r d i n g to B a r r e t t C l a r k , "a p o s i t i o n o f honor among what was, b e f o r e t h e War, the "young' N a t u r a l i s t i c g r o u p " ( 3 0 6 ) . Dubbed " t h e f i r s t v e r i t a b l e r e a l i s t i c p l a y " by P.P. Howe i n h i s a c c o u n t of the r e p e r t o r y t h e a t r e , he p r a i s e d the p l a y f o r p r e s e n t i n g "a group of o r d i n a r y p e o p l e q u i t e t r u t h f u l l y ; t h a t i s to s a y , w i t h o u t i d e a l i s a t i o n or c a r i c a t u r e or o t h e r d e f e r e n c e to the c o n v e n t i o n s of t h e t h e a t r e . T h e i r incomes a r e not m u l t i p l i e d by f i v e i n o r d e r - as i s c u s t o m a r y - to p l a c a t e the g r e a t p u b l i c , w h i c h , i n i t s t h e a t r e - g o i n g , h a t e s a n y t h i n g low" ( 1 4 6 ) . H. H a m i l t o n F y f e , w r i t i n g f o r the W o r l d , f e a r e d t h a t B a k e r ' s d e t e r m i n a t i o n t o p r e s e n t a l i f e - l i k e p i c t u r e of the c l e r k c l a s s on s t a g e would p r e v e n t her from becoming a p o p u l a r p l a y w r i g h t : "The Many l i k e Dukes. They p r e f e r t h a t the s t a g e s h a l l h o l d t h e m i r r o r up, not to N a t u r e , but to t h e F a m i l y H e r a l d . Such a v i v i d s t u d y of a c t u a l l i f e as M i s s Baker o f f e r s us i n C h a i n s can o n l y win a p p r e c i a t i o n from an i n t e l l i g e n t a u d i e n c e " (24 May 1910 8 9 3 ) . A r e v i e w e r of the p l a y ' s M a n c h e s t e r p r o d u c t i o n , however, a p p l a u d e d C h a i n s as a " l i f e - p i c t u r e , " n o t i n g t h a t "we [ p r e s u m a b l y c r i t i c s and a u d i e n c e s ] no l o n g e r s u f f e r g l a d l y a b l o o d l e s s a u t o m a t i c Snobbium Gatherum on t h e s t a g e " ( M a n c h e s t e r C o u r i e r 2 May 1911). Of c o u r s e , t h e C o u r i e r r e v i e w e r may have been s p e a k i n g more g e n e r a l l y t h a n was w a r r a n t e d . C e r t a i n l y the t h e i r p l a y s . L i k e t h e g e n t l e m a n w i t h the d a n c i n g bear i n She  S t o o p s to Conquer, t h e y " c a n n o t a b e a r a n y t h i n g t h a t ' s low'" ( W o r l d 24 May 1910 8 9 3 ) . Englishwoman was p r e p a r e d t o arg u e from j u s t s u c h an e l i t i s t p o s i t i o n , s t a t i n g t h a t " w i t h s u c h a m i l i e u - t h a t of bank c l e r k s and s u c c e s s f u l p l u m b e r s - the t r u t h of the p i c t u r e i n e v i t a b l y b r i n g s w i t h i t a c e r t a i n amount of i r r i t a t i o n and boredom" (1910 2 2 4 ) . 6 The s o - c a l l e d " o r d i n a r y p e o p l e " of a p l a y d e s c r i b e d by W i l l i a m A r c h e r as h a v i n g " a b s o l u t e l y no " s t o r y ' . . . , no c o m p l i c a t i o n o f i n c i d e n t s , not even any e m o t i o n a l t e n s i o n w orth s p e a k i n g o f " ( P l a y - m a k i n g 4 8 ) , i n c l u d e C h a r l i e W i l s o n , a c i t y c l e r k s i c k o f t h e monotonous r o u t i n e of h i s l i f e who y e a r n s to throw c a u t i o n t o the winds (meaning e m i g r a t e to A u s t r a l i a ) and i s p r e v e n t e d by r e a s o n of h i s m a r r i a g e to L i l y , a woman c o n f o r m i n g a b s o l u t e l y to K a t o ' s i d e a l of the " s t a y a t home woman." Running c o n t r a p u n t a l l y i s the s i t u a t i o n o f Maggie Massey, a s h o p - g i r l newly engaged to a h i g h l y s u i t a b l e man. U n l i k e C h a r l i e , however, Maggie does f i n a l l y r e b e l a g a i n s t a l i f e c i r c u m s c r i b e d by o p p r e s s i v e l y narrow c o n v e n t i o n s ; she r e f u s e s to marry. T h a t , i n the words of A r c h e r " i s t h e sum and s u b s t a n c e of the a c t i o n . " Yet he adds, " I f any one had t o l d t h e l a t e F r a n c i s q u e S a r c e y or the 6 P i n e r o , a p l a y w r i g h t f o n d of p r e s e n t i n g the upper c l a s s e s on s t a g e , a r g u e d i n an i n t e r v i e w w i t h W i l l l i a m A r c h e r t h a t " w e a l t h and l e i s u r e a r e more p r o d u c t i v e of d r a m a t i c c o m p l i c a t i o n s t h a n p o v e r t y and h a r d work," a l t h o u g h he was p r e p a r e d to a s s e r t t h a t h i s p l a y , The B e n e f i t of the Doubt d e p i c t e d s u b u r b i a and not M a y f a i r . To which A r c h e r r e s p o n d e d i n terms s i m i l a r t o Howe, "Suburban, p e r h a p s ; but they a l l l i v e d a t the r a t e o f f i v e t h o u s a n d a y e a r . ... And i f t h e r e was no duke i n t h e p l a y , t h e r e were a k n i g h t and a b i s h o p " ( R e a l C o n v e r s a t i o n s 2 1 ) . l a t e Clement S c o t t , t h a t a p l a y c o u l d be made out of t h i s s l e n d e r m a t e r i a l , w h i c h s h o u l d h o l d an a u d i e n c e a b s o r b e d t h r o u g h f o u r a c t s , and s t i r them to r e a l e n t h u s i a s m , t h e s e eminent c r i t i c s would have t h o u g h t him a madman. Yet M i s s Baker has a c h i e v e d t h i s f e a t , by the s i m p l e p r o c e s s of s u p p l e m e n t i n g competent o b s e r v a t i o n w i t h a f a i r s h a r e of d r a m a t i c i n s t i n c t " ( P l a y - m a k i n g 4 9 ) . The c u r t a i n f i r s t r i s e s i n C h a i n s on the s i t t i n g room of 55 A c a c i a Avenue, Hammersmith. The name of the avenue would l a t e r p u z z l e T r e w i n , who n o t e s t h a t " " A c a c i a ' a p p e a r s , f o r some r e a s o n , t o s y m b o l i z e extreme d u l l n e s s . " ( E d w a r d i a n  T h e a t re 9 6 ) . But i t s s y m b o l i s m i s more complex than t h i s . I t i s i n f a c t the f i r s t i n s t a n c e i n the p l a y of B a k e r ' s p r a c t i c e of l a y e r i n g r e a l i s t i c d e t a i l w i t h a sym b o l i s m t h a t i s o f t e n i r o n i c a l l y c h a r g e d , her use of such a t e c h n i q u e p l a c i n g her i n the company o f f e l l o w r e a l i s t , John G a l s w o r t h y , who a l s o " m a s t e r s the s u b t l e m a r r i a g e of n a t u r a l i s t i c d e t a i l and " d e l i c a t e ' s y m b o l i s m " (McDonald 1 4 3 ) . A c c o r d i n g l y , A c a c i a , c u r r e n t l y the a c t u a l name of t w e n t y - t h r e e London s t r e e t s (none i n Hammersmith), i s a l s o a s p e c i e s of f l o w e r i n g s h r u b common to A u s t r a l i a , t h e f e c u n d c o u n t r y of C h a r l e y ' s dreams. V i s i o n s of i t s l u s h v e g e t a t i o n t o r m e n t C h a r l e y as he t r i e s to make do i n h i s d a r k , "two-p e n n y - h a l f p e n n y back y a r d " w i t h i t s " r o t t e n , " u n p r o d u c t i v e s o i l . F o r a l t h o u g h C h a r l e y l o n g s to be a f r u i t - f a r m e r and would, most e m p h a t i c a l l y , " g i v e s o m e t h i n g f o r a p i e c e of good l a n d , " i n a c t u a l i t y he i s a "mere c l e r k " ^ whose e x p e r i e n c e o f t h e b l o s s o m i n g a c a c i a i s l i m i t e d to a name on a j e r r y - b u i l t s t r e e t , and whose e x p o s u r e to the a r t of h o r t i c u l t u r e i s c o n f i n e d t o l e i s u r e hour f o r a y s i n t o the s o -c a l l e d " g a r d e n ' l o c a t e d o f f t h e s i t t i n g room. With i t s f u r n i t u r e "a l i t t l e mixed i n s t y l e , " i t s c a r p e t - s q u a r e o f " i n d e t e r m i n a t e p a t t e r n , " i t s l a c e c u r t a i n s , " a p p a l l i n g w a l l p a p e r s " ( T i m e s 18 May 1910 1 0 ) , f a m i l y p h o t o g r a p h s and m a n t e l p i e c e k n i c k - k n a c k s , t h i s s i t t i n g - r o o m , w h ich i s s u i t a b l y " f e m i n i z e d ' by C h a r l e y ' s s t a y - a t - h o m e w i f e , i s a s t a g e r e p l i c a of any number of s u c h s i t t i n g rooms s t r e t c h i n g i n o p p r e s s i v e monotony t h r o u g h o u t Hammersmith. I t even c o n t a i n s a s e w i n g - m a c h i n e , the o b j e c t w hich had come i n the p e r i o d t o r e p r e s e n t s i m u l t a n e o u s l y a woman's f e m i n i n i t y and s e r v i t u d e . And to l e n d a t o u c h of g e n t e e l r e s p e c t a b i l i t y , "a b i g l i t h o g r a p h copy of a Marcus St o n e p i c t u r e " a d o r n s the w a l l . Most l i k e l y a s e n t i m e n t a l i z e d 7 In the h i e r a r c h y of c l e r k s , the Government c l e r k t o p s the l o t , f o l l o w e d i n t u r n by t h e bank c l e r k , the i n s u r a n c e c l e r k and so on a l l the way down to the "mere c l e r k " ( T i m e s , 20 A p r i l 1909 1 0 ) . G e o f f r e y B e s t r e c o r d s t h a t " J u n i o r C l e r k s i n q u a s i - p r o f e s s i o n a l o f f i c e s l i k e banks, s o l i c i t o r s , r a i l w a y c ompanies - i e . young men of e i g h t e e n to twenty ... g e n e r a l l y began a t between L70 and L80. How h i g h t h e y e v e r got would depend on t h e i r a b i l i t i e s and u s e f u l n e s s and on t h e e x t e n t t o w h i c h the b e t t e r j o b s were r e s e r v e d f o r b e t t e r c l a s s men. ... He would have been an u n f o r t u n a t e and e x c e p t i o n a l man who d i d n o t , i n any of the r a t h e r c l a s s y e s t a b l i s h m e n t s i n v e s t i g a t e d by the C i v i l S e r v i c e I n q u i r y C o m m i s s i o n e r s [ i n 1 8 7 4 ] , r i s e to between L150 and L200 a y e a r " ( 8 9 ) . image of some a s p e c t o f 1 8 t h c e n t u r y a r i s t o c r a t i c l i f e , an i c o n o g r a p h y i n which Stone s p e c i a l i z e d , i t adds an i r o n i c g l o s s t o t h e l a r g e r s t a g e p i c t u r e of a c l e r k " not even i n the a r i s t o c r a c y of c l e r k d o m " ( T i m e s 20 A p r i l 1909 1 0 ) , s t r u g g l i n g , w i t h the a i d of h i s w i f e , to m a i n t a i n t h e i r Q p o s i t i o n among t h e low e r r e a c h e s of the low e r m i d d l e c l a s s . The i r o n i c i n t r u s i o n o f an i d e a l i z e d 1 8th c e n t u r y image i n t o the ' r e a l ' w o r l d of e a r l y 2 0 t h c e n t u r y p e t t y c l e r k d o m i s s u g g e s t i v e of The M a r r y i n g of Ann L e e t e . W r i t t e n on the eve of the 1900s as a comment on t h a t t i m e , but s e t a t the c l o s e of the 18th c e n t u r y , i t c h r o n i c l e s the decay of t h a t o l d a r i s t o c r a c y so l o v i n g l y d e p i c t e d by S t o n e , and the r e j u v e n a t i o n of l i f e t h r o u g h Ann's m a r r i a g e to y e t a n o t h e r g a r d e n e r . As she s a y s to her f a t h e r by way of e x p l a n a t i o n , "we've a l l been i n too g r e a t a h u r r y g e t t i n g c i v i l i z e d . F a l s e dawn. I mean to go bac k " ( 8 2 ) . C h a r l e y ' s w i f e , L i l y , does not a g r e e . U n l i k e C h a r l e y or Ann, she i s c o n t e n t w i t h her l o t and d i s s o l v e s i n t o t e a r s at the mere p r o p o s a l of a new l i f e m a r r i e d t o a g a r d e n e r of the "new w o r l d . ' She i s B a k e r ' s s t a g e v e r s i o n of the p e r i o d ' s i d e a l w i f e , w i t h C h a i n s e x p l o r i n g t h e unhappy c o n s e q u e n c e s f o r men as w e l l as women of f e m a l e c o n f o r m i t y to t h a t t y p e . E s c h e w i n g the 8 B e s t r e f e r s to R.D. B a x t e r ' s The T a x a t i o n of the UK (1869) f o r a d e s c r i p t i o n of t h e low e r m i d d l e c l a s s as i n c l u d i n g a c l e r k e a r n i n g L99 and r e n t i n g a t L15 per annum a house w i t h no r e s i d e n t s e r v a n t . B e s t adds, however, t h a t i n 1869 "a L15 a y e a r house i n London ... would l o o k v e r y lower lower m i d d l e c l a s s i n d e e d , and would s c a r c e l y g u a r a n t e e r e s p e c t a b i l i t y " ( 9 0 ) . s o c i e t y drama f o r m a t f a v o u r e d by o t h e r " c o n d i t i o n of m a r r i a g e ' p l a y w r i g h t s , Baker a d o p t s f o r her p u r p o s e s r e a l i s t drama (w h i c h a c c o r d i n g to the Englishwoman (1910 224) f a c i l i t a t e s a c o n s i d e r a t i o n of s o c i a l r a t h e r t h a n p e r s o n a l i s s u e s ) , u s i n g i t t o a n a t o m i z e the e f f e c t of what H a m i l t o n c a l l s the " n a r r o w i n g down of woman's hopes and a m b i t i o n s to the s o l e p u r s u i t and s p h e r e of m a r r i a g e " ( M a r r i a g e 2 2 ) . When C h a i n s b e g i n s L i l y , the o n l y f l o w e r C h a r l e y seems a b l e to c u l t i v a t e i n the o p p r e s s i v e c o n d i t i o n s of su b u r b a n r e s p e c t a b i l i t y , i s at home l a y i n g the t a b l e f o r S a t u r d a y d i n n e r . " O b v i o u s l y young," she has a l r e a d y s e t t l e d i n t o the h o u s e k e e p i n g t r a d e f o r which she has been t r a i n e d , w e a r i n g the s t a n d a r d u n i f o r m of d o m e s t i c i t y , "a l i g h t c o t t o n b l o u s e , d a r k s k i r t and b i g p i n a f o r e " ( 2 1 1 ) . B a k e r ' s r e n d i t i o n of H a m i l t o n ' s r e g u l a t i o n p a t t e r n w i f e , L i l y i s a l l h o m e - l o v i n g , c h a r m i n g , s u b m i s s i v e , i n d u s t r i o u s , u n i n t e l l i g e n t , t i d y , p o s s e s s e d w i t h a d e s i r e t o p l e a s e , w e l l - d r e s s e d , j e a l o u s o f [ h e r ] . . . own sex, s e l f - s a c r i f i c i n g , c o w a r d l y , f i l l e d w i t h a b u r n i n g p a s s i o n f o r m a t e r n i t y , endowed w i t h a t a l e n t f o r c o o k i n g , n a r r o w l y u n i n t e r e s t e d i n the w o r l d o u t s i d e [ h e r ] . . . own g a t e s and c a p a b l e of s i n k i n g [ h e r ] . . . own i d e n t i t y and i n t e r e s t s i n the i n t e r e s t s and i d e n t i t y of a husband. ( M a r r i a g e 45) 179 Her c o n f o r m i t y to H a m i l t o n ' s d e s c r i p t i o n i s q u i t e s t a r t l i n g ; i n f a c t the p l a y ' s c r i s i s and r e s o l u t i o n i s wrought by the i n t e r p l a y between t h e s e v a r i o u s c r i t e r i a f o r p r o p e r wifedom, as L i l y ' s h o m e - l o v i n g , s u b m i s s i v e , s e l f - s a c r i f i c i n g , c o w a r d l y and i n c u r i o u s q u a l i t i e s a r e b r o u g h t i n t o c o n f l i c t w i t h her need to r e f l e c t C h a r l e y ' s y e a r n i n g f o r a new i d e n t i t y t h r o u g h a change of work and p l a c e , a c o n f l i c t r e s o l v e d by her t i m e l y announcement of i m p e n d i n g motherhood. At the o u t s e t o f the p l a y , however, C h a r l e y i s r e a d i l y i d e n t i f i e d as "an o r d i n a r y s p e c i m e n of the c i t y c l e r k , d r e s s e d i n c o r r e c t f r o c k - c o a t , d a r k t r o u s e r s , c a r e f u l l y c r e a s e d , much c u f f and a h i g h c o l l a r " ( 2 1 1 ) , g r e e t e d on h i s r e t u r n home from t h e o f f i c e w i t h a h u r r i e d k i s s from h i s w i f e . But a l l i s not happy. In a n o t h e r r e v e a l i n g " c l o t h i n g ' i n c i d e n t by a woman p l a y w r i g h t , C h a r l e y i s made to e x p r e s s a " f e m i n i s t ' h o s t i l i t y to r e s t r i c t i v e d r e s s : C h a r l e y [ l o o k i n g at h i s s i l k h a t ! . I s h o u l d l i k e to p i t c h t h e b e a s t l y t h i n g i n t o the r i v e r . [He  shakes h i s f i s t a t i t . Then he s t r e t c h e s h i s neck  as i f to l i f t i t out of the c o l l a r and s h a k i n g down  h i s c u f f s t i l l he can g e t a f i n e view of them,  r e g a r d s them m e d i t a t i v e l y . ] Pah! L i l y [ a n x i o u s l y ] . What's the m a t t e r w i t h them? Are they s c o r c h e d ? C h a r l e y . S c o r c h e d ! No, t h e y ' r e w h i t e enough. B e a s t l y u n i f o r m ! L i l y . But you must wear c u f f s , d e a r . (212) I t i s a costume t h a t L i l y u n q u e s t i o n i n g l y e n d o r s e s . C h a r l e y , on the o t h e r hand, b a l k s a t the r e g u l a t i o n d r e s s of the c l e r k which f i g u r a t i v e l y as w e l l as l i t e r a l l y c o n s t r i c t s h i s movements; but he wears i t , c a p i t u l a t i n g to r u l e s so s t r i c t o t h a t a f e l l o w c l e r k i s r e p r i m a n d e d f o r w e a r i n g a r e d t i e . Once home, however, he makes "a w o n d e r f u l change i n t o a l o o s e , r a t h e r c r e a s e d s u i t of b r i g h t brown, f l a n n e l s h i r t w i t h s o f t c o l l a r , f l o w i n g t i e and o l d s l i p p e r s " ( 2 1 2 ) . C o m f o r t a b l y s e t t l e d now i n h i s s i t t i n g - r o o m , he f a l l s i n t o c o n v e r s a t i o n w i t h h i s l o d g e r , F r e d T e n n a n t , who announces h i s p l a n s to e m i g r a t e to A u s t r a l i a . L i k e C h a r l e y , and i n l a n g u a g e r e m i n i s c e n t of D i a n a ( D i a n a of Dobson's) and H e l e n (The A p p l e ) Tennant c o m p l a i n s of the d u l l " g r i n d " of work: "...who wou l d n ' t have a l i t t l e r i s k i n s t e a d of t h a t b e a s t l y h o l e e v e r y day f o r y e a r s ? S c r a t c h , s c r a t c h , s c r a t c h , and n o t h i n g i n the end ..." ( 2 1 3 ) . C u r i o u s l y , however, d e s p i t e t h e s e c l e r k s ' p r e o c c u p a t i o n w i t h t h e i r c o n d i t i o n s of employment, the p l a y does not r e - c r e a t e on s t a g e , as does Tom T a y l o r ' s T i c k e t of Leave Man (1863) or G a l s w o r t h y ' s J u s t i c e (1910) f o r i n s t a n c e , the c l e r k ' s o f f i c e . F o r a l t h o u g h " t o be a c i t y c l e r k [may b e ] . . . to be a k i n d of s l a v e " the r e a l s l a v e r y of C h a i n s , as the Times r e v i e w e r goes on to p o i n t o u t , " c o n s i s t s not i n the work t h e s e c i t y 9 One i s r e m i n d e d of the f a r c i c a l " r e d - t i e ' i n c i d e n t i n P i n e r o ' s The M a g i s t r a t e ( 1 8 8 5 ) . c l e r k s do i n the c i t y , not i n the r o u t i n e of t h e i r o c c u p a t i o n s , not i n t h e i r d e c e n t p o v e r t y , but i n the n a r r o w n e s s , the u g l i n e s s , the v u l g a r i t y of the l i v e s they l e a d a t home" (18 May 1910 1 0 ) . Or as F r e d Tennant p u t s i t , "Suppose I s t a y t h e r e [ a t t h e o f f i c e ] . T h e y ' l l r a i s e the screw e v e r y y e a r t i l l I g e t what they t h i n k i s enough f o r me. Then you j u s t s t i c k . I suppose I s h o u l d marry and have l i t t l e house somewhere, and g r i n d on" ( 2 1 3 - 4 ) . " L i k e me" C h a r l e y r e s p o n d s . I t i s i n f a c t the d e b i l i t a t i n g c o n s e q u e n c e s of c o n v e n t i o n a l m a r r i a g e upon t h e s e p e o p l e ' s l i v e s , i n c l u d i n g the k i n d of work th e y do, t h a t C h a i n s a d d r e s s e s . And i t i s worth n o t i n g i n t h i s r e g a r d t h a t F r e d T e n n a n t f e e l s f r e e to "hook i t " p r e c i s e l y b e c a u s e he i s not m a r r i e d : "Why d i d I e v e r go i n t o the b e a s t l y o f f i c e ? T h e r e was nobody to s t o p me g o i n g to T i m b u c t o o , i f I l i k e d " (214) When L i l y i s i n f o r m e d t h a t Tennant i s l e a v i n g she i m m e d i a t e l y assumes t h a t he i s g o i n g to be m a r r i e d . Once d i s a b u s e d , however, she sounds the v o i c e of doom: "I do hop you won't be s o r r y f o r i t . I t would be so d r e a d f u l i f you f a i l e d " ( 2 1 5 ) . L i l y ' s s i s t e r , Maggie Massey, d e s c r i b e d as " g o o d - l o o k i n g w i t h o u t b e i n g p r e t t y , " i s more e n t h u s i a s t i c . A l t h o u g h she too i n i t i a l l y assumes t h a t Tennant i s p l a n n i n g t o marry, when she l e a r n s t h a t he i s e m i g r a t i n g p u r e l y on s p e c u l a t i o n she a p p l a u d s h i s c o u r a g e and i n i t i a t i v e . As f o r " t h e r i s k " t h a t L i l y h a r p s upon, Maggie r e s p o n d s , "He's a man. I t d o e s n ' t m a t t e r " ( 2 1 5 ) . At l e a s t as f a r as Maggie i s 182 c o n c e r n e d , men a r e i n i t i a l l y f r e e r than women, a p o s i t i o n she c l a r i f i e s i n an A c t I I c o n v e r s a t i o n w i t h C h a r l e y : " I can n e v e r u n d e r s t a n d why a man g e t s m a r r i e d . He's g o t so many c h a n c e s to see the w o r l d and do t h i n g s - and t h e n he goes and m a r r i e s and s e t t l e s down and i s a f a m i l y man b e f o r e he's t w e n t y - f o u r " ( 2 2 0 ) . A c c o r d i n g to C h a r l e y , men marry out of h a b i t , a h a b i t s u p p o r t e d i n t h e c a s e of i n n u m e r a b l e l o w e r -m i d d l e c l a s s men by monotonous and mind-numbing work. Women, on the o t h e r hand, Baker ( l i k e H a m i l t o n ) makes c l e a r , view m a r r i a g e i t s e l f as an o c c u p a t i o n w h i c h , i n the c a s e of c e r t a i n w o r k i n g women, can a ppear more d e s i r a b l e than o t h e r forms of employment. When M