Nell Dunn

(b. 1936)

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(1936– ),

novelist and playwright, whose early works of fiction, Up the Junction (1963) and Poor Cow (1967; filmed, Ken Loach, 1968), showed a sensitive ear for working‐class dialogue and an uninhibited approach to female sexuality. Her other works include The Only Child (1978, a tale of the rich) and My Silver Shoes (1996), which takes up the story of Cathy from Poor Cow—now middle‐aged and locked into an embattled and intense relationship with her ageing but inexhaustible mother. Dunn's best‐known play, Steaming (perf. 1981), is a comedy with an all‐female cast set in a Turkish bath, where a disparate group of women learn to combine to tackle the threatened closure of their refuge. Other dramatic works with a darker edge include The Little Heroine (1988) and Sisters (1994).

Subjects: Literature.

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