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Midterm

ENG337H1 Study Guide - Midterm Guide: Social Inequality, Homosociality

15 pages47 viewsFall 2011

Department
English
Course Code
ENG337H1
Professor
Terry Robinson
Study Guide
Midterm

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Drama Test 2
Definitions
The fourth wall
- the imaginary “wall” at the front of the stage, in a traditional three-walled box set in a proscenium theater,
through which the audience sees the action in the world of the play
- it contributed to theatrical realism, which extended the idea to the imaginary boundary between any
fictional work and its audience
- breaking the fourth wall is acknowledging the audience and is a technique of metafiction
willing suspension of disbelief
- this is a formula for justifying the use of fantastic or non-realistic elements in literary works of fiction
- it was put forth by Coleridge – he wanted to suspend judgment concerning the implausibility of the
narrative
framing device
- this is the usage of the same single action, scene, evetn, setting, or element o significance at the beginning
and end of a literary work
- it creates a frame within which the main body of work can develop
- this is especially used in Arabian Knights – where Scheherazade must narrate stories in order to prevent her
execution (Chaucer uses this in the Canterbury Tales)
Robert Walpole
- He is though to be the first British prime minister (he presided over the cabinet for George I and George II
- He lived from 1676 – 1745)
- He obtained the post of First Lord of the Treasury – he was sole leader of the Cabinet
- John Gay parodied him in the Beggar’s Opera
- He was a Whig statesman (dealing with social inequity through the comparison of low-class thieves and
whores with the aristocratic and bourgeois betters
- Peachum (a thief-catcher) mentions an unproductive thieve, Bob Booty (Walpole’s nickname)
- He got it banned by the Lord Chamberlain and it was not performed until 50 years later
- Linked him to Jonathan Wild, the most infamous criminal of London
Licensing Act of 1737
- act of censorship of the British stage, one of the most determining factors in the development of Augustan
drama
- The Lord Chamberlain had the power to approve any play before it was staged
- This was lead by Robert Walpole (1736-1737) when he was the First Lord of the Treasury
- The result was that the plays the passed were more sentimental and melodrama thrived – the number of
Shakespeare plays also was incredibly high (one fourth of all the plays)
Lord Chamberlain
- One of the chief officers of the Royal Household
- He often acted as the King’s spokesman in Council and Parliament
- He was important because the Licensing Act 1737 gave him the authority to veto the performance of any
new plays or modify an existing play
- The Theaters Act in 1843 restricted the powers of the Lord Chamberlain so he could only prohibit the
performance of plays were he was of the opinion that it is fitting for the preservation of good manners (this
was abolished too in 1968)
Legitimate theater
- This dates back to the licensing acts of 1737, which restricted “serious” theatre performances to the two
patent theaters licensed to perform “spoken drama”
- Other theaters were permitted to show comedy, pantomime or melodrama but these were ranked as
“illegitimate theater”
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- This restricted performances of Shakespeare and other classical authors to privileged houses – because
these could be censored more easily
Illegitimate theaters
- opened in all major English cities
- music had to play in important role – musical theater
- the emotional content of the piece is humor, pathos, love and anger – communicated through music and
movement
Laughing Comedy
- an attempt to avoid sentimental comedy and melodrama which portrays the distresses of the middle and
lower classes
- it was meant to return to earlier satirical comedy which portrays the vices and follies of the members of
those classes – leaving the upper classes to tragedy
- the values remain good nature and generosity
- comedy of errors, is a situation made amusing by bungling and incompetence
- (A School for Scandal) (The Belle’s Stratagem)
Satire
- the use of humor, irony, exaggeration, or ridicule to expose and criticize people’s stupidity or vices –
particularly in the context of contemporary politics
Tableau Vivant
- a silent and motionless group of people arranged to represent a scene or incident
Spectacle
- visually striking performance or display, regarded in terms of its visual impact
blocking
- design or plan the movement of actors on a stage or movie set
The French revolution
- 1789-1799
- this was social and political upheaval in France
- the absolute monarchy that had rules France for centuries collapsed in three years, French society
underwent an epic transformation as aristocratic and religious privileges evaporated under an assault from
radical left-wing political groups
- old ideas about tradition and hierarchy of monarchy, aristocracy (the highest class – usually holding
hereditary titles) and religious authority were overthrown by new Enlightenment principles of equality,
citizenship and inalienable rights
The Storming of Bastille
- the morning of July 14, 1789 – the medieval fortress and prison which represented royal authority in the
center of Paris was stormed
- it’s fall was the flashpoint (catalyst) of the French Revolution
- Marie Antoinette and Louis XVI were executed
Reign of Terror
- a period of remorseless repression and bloodshed during the French Revolution
- it lasted from 1793-1794
- it was a conflict between rival political factions, the Girondins and the Jacobians
- marked by mass executions of “enemies of the revolution”
- the death toll was an estimated 16,000 by the guillotine and 25,000 by firing squad
Jacobins
- the most famous and influential political club in the development of the French Revolution
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- it was notorious for its implementation of the Reign of Terror
- Jacobin is used for radical left-wing revolutionary politics
Closet drama
- a play to be read rather than acted
Melodrama
- a sensational dramatic piece with exaggerated characters and exciting events intended to appeal to the
emotions
- a play interspersed with songs and orchestral music accompanying the action
Miss In Her Teens
- Farce
- By David Garrick
- First produced at Covent Garden
- 1747
David Garrick (1717 – 1779)
- He was an actor and playwright
- His appearance of Richard III (Shakespeare) made him famous
- He was with the Drury Lane company and purchased a share of the theater
- He managed the theater for 29 years
- He reformed acting, he had the hold poses thing, and he wanted audience interaction, he also had set
design, costumes and special effects
- People don’t think he was a good playwright but he was responsible for bringing Shakespeare to
contemporary audiences
Main Characters
- Captain Rhodophil Loveit (hero)
- Miss Biddy Belair (heroine)
- Fribble
- Flash
- Jasper
- Puff (Captain Loveit’s man)
- Tag (Puff’s wife)
- Aunt has been deleted, so has Simon Loveit (the creepy old man)
Act I, Scene I
- Captain Loveit and Puff are talking about Biddy, how Captain fell in love with her
- Puff asks if he “took fire” with her before he knew of her fortune and the Captain says he did
- Puff reveals he had a wife in town who he left half a year ago – he asks to see her first before he finds
Biddy but the Captain says no
- “they think of nobody’s wants but their own” – Puff
- Jasper enters
- Jasper talks about how he works for a old creepy man who plays with biddy until his mouth waters
- Biddy is revealed as 16 years old
- Jasper also reveals that he has fallen for Tag, Biddy’s maid and Puff’s wife
- “thus we are as civil and as false as our betters” – Puff
- “we ever hated one another heartily, yet always shake hands” – Puff
- Enter Tag – Jasper pretends that she is a homeless woman and that he doesn’t know her
- “Let me press you to my heart that pants for thee, and only thee” - Puff when he realizes she isn’t giving
up
- Puff calls her a slut because he catches that he has been hooking up with Jasper
- Tag agrees to help Puff because it will make Biddy happy
Scene II
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