Written in 1912 during the upsurge of the British feminist movement, this powerful play deals with the oppressive patriarchal system of the industrial North at that time. Rutherford is the hard, tyrannical master of both his glassworks and his family, who attacks, degrades and rejects each of his children in turn. To his daughter Janet, her banishment is a release, and she forcefully condemns her father and his values.
Plays by Katherine Githa Sowerby
Katherine Githa Sowerby (6 October 1876 – 30 June 1970), also known under her pen name K. G. Sowerby, was an English playwright, children's writer, and member of the Fabian Society. A feminist, she was well known during the early 20th century for her 1912 hit play Rutherford & Son, but lapsed into obscurity in later decades. Rutherford & Son was first revived in 1980, and since then there have been several productions, including one at the Royal National Theatre in 1994 and, most recently, by Northern Broadsides. A biography of Sowerby by Pat Riley, Looking for Githa, appeared in 2009. In addition to several plays, Sowerby wrote books of poetry and short stories for children, illustrated by her sister Millicent Sowerby. Her papers and memorabilia are in the collections at the Tyne and Wear Archives