Miser and Other Plays A New Selection

ISBN-10: 0140447288

ISBN-13: 9780140447286

Edition: 2nd 2000

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Description: Moliere (1622 - 73) combined all the traditional elements of comedy - wit, slapstick, spectacle and satire - with a deep understanding of character to create richly sophisticated dramas. Most are built around dangerously deluded heroes such as The Miser who threaten to blight the lives of those around them. In his first great triumph, The School for Wives (newly translated for this edition), an ageing domestic tyrant is foiled in his plans to wed his young ward. Although it was criticised for mocking the 'sacred' institution of marriage - to which Moliere hit back with a play of defence, The School for Wives Criticized - it was the alleged atheism of his dark, subversive version of Don Juan which struck the blackest note. Finally, in The Hypochondriac, the terminally ill author produced a hilarious expose of the ways doctors use medical mumbo - jumbo to fleece their patients. All of Moliere's greatest achievements are included here and in the accompanying Penguin Classics volume, The Misanthrope and Other Plays.

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Book details

List price: $13.00
Edition: 2nd
Copyright year: 2000
Publisher: Penguin Publishing Group
Publication date: 9/1/2000
Binding: Paperback
Pages: 336
Size: 5.00" wide x 7.75" long x 1.00" tall
Weight: 0.770
Language: English

The French dramatist Moliere was born Jean-Baptiste Poquelin on January 15, 1622, in Paris. The son of a wealthy tapestry merchant, he had a penchant for the theater from childhood. In 1636, he was sent off to school at the Jesuit College of Claremont and in 1643, he embarked upon a 13-year career touring in provincial theater as a troupe member of Illustre Theatre, a group established by the family Bejarts. He married a daughter of the troupe, Armande Bejart, in 1662 and changed his name to Moliere. The French King Louis XIV, becoming entranced with the troupe after seeing a performance of The Would-Be Gentleman, lent his support and charged Moliere with the production of comedy ballets in which he often used real-life human qualities as backdrops rather than settings from church or state. Soon, Moliere secured a position at the Palais-Royal and committed himself to the comic theater as a dramatist, actor, producer, and director. Moliere is considered to be one of the preeminent French dramatists and writers of comedies; his work continues to delight audiences today. With L'Ecole des Femmes (The School for Wives) Moliere broke with the farce tradition, and the play, about the role played by women in society and their preparation for it, is regarded by many as the first great seriocomic work of French literature. In Tartuffe (1664), Moliere invented one of his famous comic types, that of a religious hypocrite, a character so realistic that the king forbade public performance of the play for five years. Moliere gave psychological depth to his characters, engaging them in facial antics and slapstick comedy, but with an underlying pathos. Jean Baptiste Moliere died in 1673.

Introduction
Chronology
Bibliography
Note on Money
Translator's Note
The School for Wives
The School for Wives Criticized
Don Juan
The Miser
The Hypochondriac
Explanatory Notes
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