The French heroine, known for fearlessly leading the French in battles against English soldiers in the Hundred Years War, will be played by non-binary actor Isobel Thom in I, Joan.
The script for the play, which opens at the historic theatre this month, has been altered to change the pronouns of the French patron saint.
The production has been described as “powerful and joyous”, with artistic director Michelle Terry saying it will “question the gender binary” and “offer the possibility of another point of view”.
“For centuries, Joan has been a cultural icon portrayed in countless plays, books, films, etc,” she said.
“History has provided countless and wonderful examples of Joan portrayed as a woman. This production is simply offering the possibility of another point of view. That is the role of theatre: to simply ask the question, ‘Imagine if?’”
Terry continued: “Theatres produce plays, and in plays, anything can be possible. Shakespeare did not write historically accurate plays. He took figures of the past to ask questions about the world around him.
“Shakespeare was not afraid of discomfort, and neither is the Globe.”
A statement on The Globe’s website affirmed that it was “committed to becoming an inclusive and diverse organisation” willing to make “necessary change”.
“We aim to create a culture and environment in which everyone’s experience at Shakespeare’s Globe is equal, inclusive, and equitable,” it read.
I, Joan will run at the Globe from 25 August to 22 October.
Additional reporting by Press Association.
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