Aristophanes, Eupolis, and Cratinus were among the best playwrights who ancient critics recognized for their literary works. Aristophanes’ plays are the only surviving samples of the literary genre conventionally referred to as old comedy. Old comedies were characteristic of topical issues touching in the society and real personalities. New Comedy transcended topical issues to generalized contexts together with stock characters. The move was because playwrights had internalized the perspectives of the people’s cultures after changes.
These characters are usually foiled in their obsessive attempts to manipulate the world, often through schemes that backfire. Because they adhere so firmly to their own narrow view of the world, a negative result is inevitable, and by play’s end they are made to look foolish. Mostly, the focal points of Molière plays attempt to victimize or control other characters through manipulative behavior, usually for personal gain. Due to an intense focus on the character’s “Achilles heel,” the audience’s field of vision expands, making the character’s capacity for ridiculous behavior seem as wide as a football field. In The Misanthrope, Molière portrays Alceste, a man who despises hypocrisy, and can do nothing but see all of society as corrupt.
This can be seen in an essay by Gustave Lanson when he states, “In Paris Italian farce had replaced French farce.” The success of Commedia Dell’ Arte during the reign of Charles IX is well-known” (Lanson, 137). This effect can be seen through one of the country’s most famous playwrights, Moliere. Moliere was a renowned playwright and actor that continues to be well-known today. He was greatly influenced by Commedia Dell’ Arte. “Well-known definitions of the Commedia Dell’ Arte are that it was a semi-literary form of theatrical performance based primarily upon effective gestures and lazzi, and involving a limited number of generally accepted types who in their contrasting relation provide the setting for a light and flimsy action linked somehow by the eternal theme of love”( 704).
Malvolio is used in Twelfth Night to personify the notion of Lent and order in the text and is the butt of the comedy in the sub-plot. The conspirators Sir Toby, Mary, Sir Andrew, Feste, and to an extent Fabien, are the characters who are the creators of the gulling of Malvolio. Whether or not the joke is thought to go too far is, in my opinion, dependent on the audience. For example, an Elizabethan audience could potentially find the play more humorous than a modern 21st Century audience. In the late 1600s, individuals to be considered 'mad' were thought to have been possessed by the devil or some other evil spirit, and so were mocked and considered dangerous and unapproachable (as suggested by Sir Toby in Act 3 Scene 4 “defy the devil”).
The Fools songs, riddles and jokes are a source of comic relief, used to break up the intensity of scenes. The Fool appears to have a deceptively simple part in the play when in actual fact his role is of key significance. The Fool and Lear have a fascinating relationship throughout the play. Lear seems to depend on his Fool increasingly to be his voice of reason or his conscience, because he reminds Lear of all his mistakes and manipulates his feelings into realising them. This is a great irony as the King who is supposed to be wise is in-fact a fool, yet the Fool himself is full of
Willy Russell is one of the most important working-class playwrights of our time and his politics and social attitudes are expressed through comedic value. It is in this way the paradoxical status quo of Frank and Rita is expressed through comedy in his play ‘Educating Rita,’ 1983 and it is this paradox that will form much of this discussion in looking at how the role of comedy highlights social differences and how these social differences could be viewed with hilarity rather than seriousness; in other words Russell wants us to laugh at social class because it is so ridiculous and that people should be judged on merit and not where they come from. Much of the comedy in the play stems from Rita and Frank’s conversations. Their cultural differences are a noticeable source of comedy in the play; where Rita speaks colloquially and has a working class accent, Frank speaks in Standard English without any accent. This is significant because Rita’s lively and irreverent speech is a source of humour in the play.
King Lear Essay Show how King Lear and/or its main character conforms to three criteria found in Aristotle’s Poetics via A.C. Bradley’s, The Shakespearean Tragic Hero [As outlined in Viewpoints, page 687.] In the play “King Lear” by William Shakespeare it is shown as tragedy. The protagonist of the play, Lear is proud, serious, arbitrary, impatient, peremptory, humorless, and capricious and his position in life has allowed him to indulge all these traits to the fullest. Lear can inspire as well as command loyalty and obedience. Even though Lear is not a man of intellectual brilliance he is a “great soul,” with the capacity for feeling deeply the sorrow of rejection and abandonment by his own.
A dandy is a man who places unusual importance on his clothes and appearance. He cultivates wit and refined language, and leads a leisured life. Dandies were common in the literature and drama of certain periods, notably comic plays of the Restoration period (1660-1700), and in eighteenth- and early nineteenth-century literature. They were usually ridiculous figures who embodied the absurd fashions and mores of their time, and were meant to be laughed at by the audience or reader. Many of Wilde’s works feature a dandy, and in many cases, the dandy stands in for the author.
Comedy in Twelfth Night. Summary: Explores how William Shakespeare creates comedy in the first two acts of his play Twelfth Night. Analyzes the use of pun, comic characters, sub-plot, misunderstood conversations and dramatic irony. Comedy means something farcical that can make people laugh. It is usually done for the purpose of entertainment.
Shakespear's comic genius resembles the bee rather in its power of extracting sweets from weeds or poisons, than in leaving a sting behind it. He gives the most amusing exaggeration of the prevailing foibles of his characters, but in a way that they themselves, instead of being offended at, would almost join in to humour; he rather contrives opportunities for them to shew themselves off in the happiest lights, than renders them contemptible in the perverse construction of the wit or malice of others.-There is a certain stage of society in which people become conscious of their peculiarities and absurdities, affect to disguise what they are, and set up pretensions to what they are not. This gives rise to a corresponding style of comedy, the object of which is to detect the disguises of self-love, and to make reprisals on these preposterous assumptions of vanity, by marking the contrast between the real and the affected character as severely as possible, and denying to those, who would impose on us for what they arenot, even the merit which they have. This is the comedy of