When: April 19-May 5 2012
The year is 1914. Under the Comstock Act, it is illegal in the United States to make, possess or distribute written material, drugs or devices for the purpose of contraception. Doctors may not prescribe, procure or advise patients that contraceptives exist. The penalty? Between six months and five years hard labor or a fine, adjusted for inflation, between $1,900 and $38,000 per offense.
Despite that, it's also the year that the term "birth control" will be invented. And that fall, in an upstairs room of a Catholic reformatory in New York, four indigent teenage girls will beatify and canonize, in secret, a new saint they can call their own. Her name: Margaret Sanger, one of the founders of the birth control movement.
What Every Girl Should Know, playwright Monica Byrne's new work, premieres this week courtesy of Little Green Pig Theatrical Concern. In her follow-up to last season's Nightwork at Manbites Dog Theater, Byrne mixes dark humor with social criticism as a quartet of unlikely suffragettes find the stakes in their fantasies of international intervention unexpectedly raised when one of them becomes pregnant. The show runs at Cordoba Center for the Arts, 923 Franklin St. in east Durham, Thursdays through Saturdays through May 5. After Thursday's $5-minimum pay-what-you-can preview, tickets are $13–$17, with $5 student rush tickets at all shows. —Byron Woods