Kitty Marion

Actor and activist

Edited by Viv Gardner and Diane Atkinson

Kitty Marion


  • eBook

Book Information

  • Format: Hardcover
  • ISBN: 978-1-5261-3804-0
  • Pages: 296
  • Publisher: Manchester University Press
  • Price: £90.00
  • Published Date: February 2019
  • BIC Category: The arts / Theatre studies, Humanities / Social & cultural history, BIOGRAPHY & AUTOBIOGRAPHY / Women, HISTORY / Women, PERFORMING ARTS / Theater / History & Criticism, Autobiography: arts & entertainment, Political activism, Literature
  • Series: Women, Theatre and Performance


With the outbreak of World War I, German-born Kitty Marion, suspected of being a German spy and placed under surveillance, sailed from Liverpool for New York. She left a dramatic and colourful life behind: a hectic and fascinating 20-year career as a performer crisscrossing Britain first as a singer, dancer and actress on the musical comedy and pantomime stage, and then in music hall as a 'refined comedienne'. She campaigned against the sexual abuses rife in the theatre of the day which led her eventually into the suffragette movement where she became a 'notorious' militant, responsible for numerous acts of arson. She was imprisoned, went on hunger-strike, and was force-fed more than 300-times. In America, she became a celebrated 'foot-soldier' in Margaret Sanger's birth control movement. Her autobiography, written in the 1930s is published here for the first time.


List of illustrations
The Editors
List of abbreviations

The Autobiography
1. Germany
2. England
3. Militant Suffrage
4. War
5. 'Hail Columbia'
6. Birth Control
7. Peace
Appendix I: Home Office Papers: Prison Reports
Appendix II: Prison Letters
Appendix III: Home Office: Citizenship Reports

Select Bibliography


Viv Gardner is Professor Emerita at the University of Manchester, and is a theatre and performance historian, focusing on gender and sexuality at the fin de siècle

Diane Atkinson is an independent scholar and author of three biographies and two illustrated two books on the suffragettes

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