UK First for 1938 Jamaican Drama

Pocomania, a play written in 1938 by Jamaican journalist, activist and creative visionary, Una Marson, will be staged for the first time in this country by Theatre Peckham. It opens on 31 January.

Una Marson

The word ‘Pocomania’ is derived from ‘Pukkumina’ meaning ‘little madness’ and the play addresses mental health issues in Black communities as a result of colonialism and displacement.

In the aftermath of the first World War, Stella Manners, a young middle-class woman loses the love of her life to the war effort. Faced with depression, Stella is fascinated by the sound of the drum coming from her neighbour’s yard. As she navigates the shifting landscapes of imperial Jamaica, Stella confronts themes of love, loss, displacement, manipulation, spirituality, and awakening.

Pocomania testifies to the sweeping process of social change taking place across the Caribbean and explores issues such as identity, class and religion in a post-emancipation context.

The play is a collaboration between Decolonising the Archive, Theatre Peckham, Black Thrive and the Black Cultural Archives.

Pocomania  runs from 31 January to 5 February in Theatre Peckham, 221 Havil St, SE5 7SB. It is also accompanied by two community workshops.

For further information and tickets call 020 7708 5401 or visit

Decolonising the Archives are offering free tickets for service users of mental health facilities – 25% of overall tickets per show. Please call the Theatre Peckham to book your ticket.