Pygmalion and Three Other Plays (Barnes & Noble Classics)
George Bernard Shaw
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- New introductions commissioned from today's top writers and scholars
- Biographies of the authors
- Chronologies of contemporary historical, biographical, and cultural events
- Footnotes and endnotes
- Selective discussions of imitations, parodies, poems, books, plays, paintings, operas, statuary, and films inspired by the work
- Comments by other famous authors
- Study questions to challenge the reader's viewpoints and expectations
- Bibliographies for further reading
- Indices & Glossaries, when appropriate
All editions are beautifully designed and are printed to superior specifications; some include illustrations of historical interest. Barnes & Noble Classics pulls together a constellation of influences—biographical, historical, and literary—to enrich each reader's understanding of these enduring works.
Hailed as “a Tolstoy with jokes” by one critic, George Bernard Shaw was the most significant British playwright since the seventeenth century. Pygmalion persists as his best-loved play, one made into both a classic film—which won Shaw an Academy Award for best screenplay—and the perennially popular musical My Fair Lady.
Pygmalion follows the adventures of phonetics professor Henry Higgins as he attempts to transform cockney flower girl Eliza Doolittle into a refined lady. The scene in which Eliza appears in high society with the correct accent but no notion of polite conversation is considered one of the funniest in English drama. Like most of Shaw’s work, Pygmalion wins over audiences with wit, a taut morality, and an innate understanding of human relationships.
This volume also includes Major Barbara, which attacks both capitalism and charitable organizations, The Doctor’s Dilemma, a keen-eyed examination of medical morals and malpractice, and Heartbreak House, which exposes the spiritual bankruptcy of the generation responsible for the bloodshed of World War I.
John A. Bertolini is Ellis Professor of the Liberal Arts at Middlebury College, where he teaches dramatic literature, Shakespeare, and film. He has written The Playwrighting Self of Bernard Shaw and articles on Hitchcock, and British and American dramatists. Bertolini also wrote the introduction and notes to the Barnes & Noble Classics edition of Shaw’s Man and Superman and Three Other Plays.
medium, paint-smudged rags, tubes of color, brushes, charcoal, a small lay figure, fa a kettle and spirit-lamp,fb and other odds and ends. By the table is a sofa, littered with drawing blocks, sketch-books, loose sheets of paper, newspapers, books, and more smudged rags. Next the outer door is an umbrella and hat stand, occupied partly by Louis’ hats and cloak and muffler, and partly by odds and ends of costumes. There is an old piano stool on the near side of this door. In the corner near the
treat a duchess as if she was a flower girl. LIZA I see. [She turns away composedly, and sits on the ottoman, facing the window]. The same to everybody. HIGGINS Just so. LIZA Like father. HIGGINS [grinning, a little taken down] Without accepting the comparison at all points, Eliza, it’s quite true that your father is not a snob, and that he will be quite at home in any station of life to which his eccentric destiny may call him. [Seriously] The great secret, Eliza, is not having bad manners
want to go to prison. CAPTAIN SHOTOVER Is that the only reason? Are you quite sure honesty has nothing to do with it? ELLIE Oh, you are very very old-fashioned, Captain. Does any modern girl believe that the legal and illegal ways of getting money are the honest and dishonest ways? Mangan robbed my father and my father’s friends. I should rob all the money back from Mangan if the police would let me. As they won‘t, I must get it back by marrying him. CAPTAIN SHOTOVER I can’t argue: I’m too
breweries or distilleries that supply them. bl An explosive. bm Improvise a bass-line accompaniment. bn Italian composer Gaetano Donizetti’s Lucia di Lammermoor (1835), based on Sir Walter Scott’s novel The Bride of Lammermoor (1819). bo Barbara repeats Christ’s words of doubt just before He dies on the Cross (see the Bible, Matthew 27:46). bp The 1905 equivalent of a fast-food restaurant. bq British physician and philanthropist Thomas Barnardo (1845-1905) founded homes for
researches in improved methods of destroying life and property. I have always done so; and I always shall. Therefore your Christmas card moralities of peace on earth and goodwill among men are of no use to me. Your Christianity, which enjoins you to resist not evil, and to turn the other cheek, would make me a bankrupt. M y morality—m y religion—must have a place for cannons and torpedoes in it. STEPHEN [coldly—almost sullenly] You speak as if there were half a dozen moralities and religions to