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The Playboy of the Western World (New Mermaid edition)

The Playboy of the Western World (New Mermaid edition)

John Millington Synge, Malcolm Kelsall

ISBN: 9780713643220

The story of Christy Mahon, a timid peasant youth who is bullied, then rebels. This play of passion, and savage humour disturbed the first audiences at the Abbey Theatre, Dublin, in 1907 and led to riots.

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: Trade Paperback

This title does not require a licensing fee for performance.

Synge, who came from a middle-class Protestant family near Dublin, created a huge scandal at the Abbey Theatre in Dublin, where The Playboy was staged in 1907, because its audience did not take kindly to a comedy that seemed to portray the Irish as violent, superstitious sots and swaggerers. Synge relied on and at the same time mocked the Irish dramatic movement and its ambition to create realistic drama that was also poetically beautiful. The play is set 'near a village, on a wild coast of Mayo'. On the first day, a stranger arrives and declares that he is on the run because he has killed his father - for this, the villagers turn him into a hero. On the second day, however, his father arrives walking wounded, and although Christy knocks him down with a spade, his father seems impossible to kill. The set off together, still quarrelling, and the villagers are bereft of their excitement.
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