Unit 5&6 – Task 1

The main four woman wrote this in the 1940s, were the play is set. The book is based around the 4 woman’s life, which is from their diary’s and interviews with these originals Land Girl’s. These 4 woman didn’t know each other and it was based in all different places, which they wrote in their diary. There is one hundred and fifty letters that they used from evidence from these women to help write the book. It is about personal journeys of 4 women who join the Women’s Land Army, which they work endless hours on farms across the country in a bid to do their best for the War Effort.

The whole book is based around World War II because that was the event happening and the reason all of this happened. So when the war began all the men had to go and fight for their country, which left the woman to take over their labour work and for some of them they picked working on the land. Throughout the years go on and the war still hasn’t finished, the woman start enjoying working and becoming independent, however when the males come back they were forced back to being house wives because the men needed their jobs back.

In 2001, the Lions part decided to stage Christopher Fry’s play, A Sleep Of Prisoners, which lead to the thought of a play that gave a voice to the wartime experiences of women. The Land Girl which is a journey that was wrote in the 1940s. Lilies on the land was published in 2010 in the end, but got the idea in 2001 after ‘A Sleep Of Prisoners’.


(Wednesday 30th November)


Some historical events that may have got the writer to start thinking about the war are:

In 2001 the twin towers in USA were attacked and crashed into by planes. Because this is such a tragic event, it could have brought back memories of the war because everyone stood up to and respected what happened that day but still couldn’t do anything about it.

The United States invades Afghanistan, with some participation from the UK. Marking the beginning of the US  “War on Terrorism” campaign. Seeking to oust the Taliban and find Al-Qaeda mastermind Osama bin Laden.

These events are based around war ideas which brought back the idea of WWII and the Land Girls. War is such a tragic event that it was sure to be brought up even after 60 years because it still happens to this day. These days it is more likely and women are more freely to work places and everything around them. So Nick Hern books can be showing the differences between how women have evolved and changed throughout the years, however, still incorporating similarities with war.


(Wednesday 30th November)

Nick Hern Books came into being in June 1988 when Nick Hern, formerly drama editor at Methuen, set up his own imprint under the aegis of Walker Books. Its first title in print was Nicholas Wright’s play Mrs Klein, which opened at the National Theatre in August 1988 before transferring to the West End and Broadway.

NHB celebrated its 25th anniversary in 2013, marking the occasion with a special publication, a panel event at the Almeida Theatre on playwriting over the last twenty-five years, and special competitions and giveaways.


(Wednesday 7th December)


The play was published in 2010, however technically was written in 1940s. So social context which happened when this play was being written:


In 1940s: Much of popular culture was entrenched in anti-German and anti-Japanese sentiment. This is to expected when you are fighting a war against someone. Still, the 40s brought us Jeep, the Slinky, Velcro, Tupperware AND Frisbee. And all of the Beatles were born in the 40s. It is almost impossible to explain how much of an impact the war had on all aspects of life. You were not allowed to simply waltz into a store and buy as much sugar, butter or meat as you like. You also couldn’t fill up your gas tank whenever you wanted. Many items we take for granted today were rationed, meaning you could only buy the amount the government allowed. In some cases, rationing is the only way to make sure everyone gets access to thing they need to survive.

Post WWII, cars started becoming very big and luxurious. When you look at them you can tell that late 40s cars were the baby stages of the awesome 50s cars we love so much.


(Wednesday 7th December)

The person who published the play was Nick Hern Books  who got most of the story from the original Land Lady’s. Nick Hern Books is a London-based independent specialist publisher of plays. The company was founded by the former drama editor Nicholas Hern in 1988. Because it is a company there isn’t much social context behind Lilies on the Land because its based on a true story and is from the 4 women but after 60 years a play is written about them and their stories and it is published.



(Wednesday 7th December)


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