How to be a babe-magnet: JM Synge's The Playboy of the Western World

View previous topic View next topic Go down

How to be a babe-magnet: JM Synge's The Playboy of the Western World

Post  eddie on Sun Apr 17, 2011 2:33 pm

Salvaged from the old ATU site:

http://webcache.googleusercontent.com/search?q=cache:6fFcH6AgFlsJ:acrosstheuniverse.forumotion.com/t3794-the-playboy-of-the-western-world-how-to-be-a-babe-magnet+site:acrosstheuniverse.forumotion.com+acrosstheuniverse+%2B+flann+o'Brien&cd=4&hl=en&ct=clnk&gl=uk&source=www.google.co.uk

eddie
The Gap Minder

Posts: 7838
Join date: 2011-04-11
Age: 58
Location: Desert Island

Back to top Go down

Re: How to be a babe-magnet: JM Synge's The Playboy of the Western World

Post  eddie on Mon Jun 06, 2011 8:42 am

^

Replicated below in the event of link expiry:

*******************************************************************

Eddie wrote:

John Millington Synge's play suggests that making yourself irresistible to women is all a matter of being mad, bad and dangerous to know; killing your father (or at least believing you have, as the play's Christy Mahon does) is a good first step.

THE PLAYBOY OF THE WESTERN WORLD

a comedy in three acts by John Millington Synge
First performed in 1907

The following analysis of The Playboy of the Western World was originally published in The British and American Drama of Today. Barrett H. Clark. New York: Henry Holt and Company, 1915. pp. 194-7.

In the preface to The Playboy of the Western World, John Millington Synge wrote: "... in countries where the imagination of the people, and the language they use, is rich and living, it is possible for a writer to be rich and copious in his words, and at the same time give the reality, which is the root of all poetry, in a comprehensive and natural form." This play is the living embodiment of Synge's ideas on the combination of reality and poetry in the drama. The Playboy of the Western World -- indeed, all of Synge's plays -- is outside the realm of literary "movements" and coteries; his plays are not plays of ideas. Theses and problems die. Ideas are for a generation, or for a few generations. Again the dramatist expounds (in the preface to The Tinker's Wedding): "The drama is made serious -- in the French sense of the word -- not by the degree in which it is taken up with problems that are serious in themselves, but by the degree in which it gives the nourishment, not very easy to define, on which our imaginations live.... The drama, like the symphony, does not teach or prove anything...."

In his travel-book, The Aran Islands, we find the following passage: "... He often tells me about a Connaught man who killed his father with a blow of a spade when he was in a passion, and then fled to this island and threw himself on the mercy of some of the natives.... They hid him in a hole ... and kept him safe for weeks, though the police came and searched for him, and he could hear their boots grinding on the stones over his head. In spite of a reward which was offered, the island was incorruptible, and after much trouble the man was safely shipped to America.

"This impulse to protect the criminal is universal in the west. It seems partly due to the association between justice and the hated English jurisdiction, but more directly to the primitive feeling of these people, who are never criminals yet always capable of crime, that a man will not do wrong unless he is under the influence of a passion which is as irresistible as a storm on the sea. If a man has killed his father, and is already sick and broken with remorse, they can see no reason why he should be dragged away and killed by the law.

"Such a man, they say, will be quiet all the rest of his life, and if you suggest that punishment is needed as an example, they ask, 'Would any one kill his father if he was able to help it?'"

Out of his sympathy and enthusiasm for life, its humor, its bite, its contradictions, its exhilaration, Synge wrote this play. The dramatist's end was "reality" and "joy." He was little concerned with technique, he had no purpose but that of allowing his living creatures to revel in life, to revel in rich idioms. Still, this apparently spontaneous comedy was the result of arduous labor: George Moore relates that the last act was rewritten thirteen times.

Many plays, of all ages and periods, have contained first acts with very little in them but the exposition of a few facts and the creation of the environment or milieu. The opening of The Playboy of the Western World is full of atmosphere, and strikes the keynote of the action which is to follow; but there is no such conscious preparation as there is in the expository act of Pinero's Thunderbolt. Pegeen Mike, in Synge's play, opens the act with: "Six yards of stuff for to make a yellow gown. A pair of lace boots with lengthy heels on them and brassy eyes. A hat is suited for a wedding-day. A fine tooth comb. To be sent with three barrels of porter in Jimmy Farrell's creel cart on the evening of the coming Fair to Mister Michael James Flaherty. With the best compliments of this season. Margaret Flaherty." Compare this simple paragraph with the elaborate preparatory openings of The Second Mrs. Tanqueray and Iris.

Throughout the play the development of the plot, such as it is, goes hand in hand with the development of Christy's character. Beginning with Christy's "I had it in my mind it was a different word and bigger" (just after his entrance in the first act), trace, by reference to his speeches, how, in his own estimation and in that of his audience, he grows from "a slight young man ... very tired and frightened and dirty" to a "likely gaffer in the end of all." There is a certain similarity between the growth of Hamlet's character and Christy's.

The Playboy of the Western World is literary in the dramatic sense of the word. Can the same be said of Stephen Phillips's Paolo and Francesca.


eddie
The Gap Minder

Posts: 7838
Join date: 2011-04-11
Age: 58
Location: Desert Island

Back to top Go down

Re: How to be a babe-magnet: JM Synge's The Playboy of the Western World

Post  eddie on Mon Jun 06, 2011 8:44 am

Eddie wrote:

The sexual politics aside, the most interesting thing about the play is its language, an Anglo-Irish concoction Synge created after his visit to the remote Aran islands off the west coast of Ireland.

A few sample sentences:

Quotations

"... it's great luck and company I've won me in the end of time — two fine women fighting for the likes of me — till I'm thinking this night wasn't I a foolish fellow not to kill my father in the years gone by." — Christy

"Drink a health to the wonders of the western world, the pirates, preachers, poteen-makers, with the jobbing jockies; parching peelers, and the juries fill their stomachs selling judgments of the English law." — Sara Tansey

"It's well you know what call I have. It's well you know it's a lonesome thing to be passing small towns with the lights shining sideways when the night is down, or going in strange places with a dog noising before you and a dog noising behind, or drawn to the cities where you'd hear a voice kissing and talking deep love in every shadow of the ditch, and you passing on with an empty, hungry stomach failing from your heart." — Christy

"A daring fellow is the jewel of the world...." — Michael Flaherty

"...the blow of a loy, have taught me that there's a great gap between a gallous story and a dirty deed." — Pegeen

"You've turned me a likely gaffer in the end of all, the way I'll go romancing through a romping lifetime, from this hour to the dawning of the Judgment Day." — Christy

"Oh my grief, I've lost him surely. I've lost the only Playboy of the Western World." — Pegeen Mike



eddie
The Gap Minder

Posts: 7838
Join date: 2011-04-11
Age: 58
Location: Desert Island

Back to top Go down

Re: How to be a babe-magnet: JM Synge's The Playboy of the Western World

Post  eddie on Mon Jun 06, 2011 8:45 am

Eddie wrote:

Not everybody was impressed.

Riots greeted the play's first production in Dublin in 1907 and its US premiere in 1911.

It was perceived as an insult to both Irish nationalist aspirations and to Irish womanhood generally


eddie
The Gap Minder

Posts: 7838
Join date: 2011-04-11
Age: 58
Location: Desert Island

Back to top Go down

Re: How to be a babe-magnet: JM Synge's The Playboy of the Western World

Post  eddie on Mon Jun 06, 2011 8:46 am

Eddie wrote:

An Irish humorist of a later generation, Flann O'Brien, was equally unenthused by Synge's work but for a rather different reason.

O'Brien's objection was that the suffering of the Irish people at the hands of the English over the centuries was as nothing to the latter's discovery (through Synge) that the Irish were "frightfully interesting people actually, fearfully Seltic and all that".

Synge, in his view, had created a monstrous stereotype; he was nothing more than "a comic ghoul with his wakes and mugs of porter."

Hard to please, these Irish folks.

eddie
The Gap Minder

Posts: 7838
Join date: 2011-04-11
Age: 58
Location: Desert Island

Back to top Go down

Re: How to be a babe-magnet: JM Synge's The Playboy of the Western World

Post  eddie on Mon Jun 06, 2011 8:47 am

Eddie wrote:

George Moore's observation in the quote above that the last act was re-written 13 times bears out the suggestion that this apparently spontaneous comedy was the result of intense labour.

Note, for example, that Christy's apparent murder of his father three times is a concealed mythological reference to Cerberus, the three-headed canine guardian of the classical Underworld.


eddie
The Gap Minder

Posts: 7838
Join date: 2011-04-11
Age: 58
Location: Desert Island

Back to top Go down

Re: How to be a babe-magnet: JM Synge's The Playboy of the Western World

Post  eddie on Mon Jun 06, 2011 8:48 am

John McLaughlin wrote:

Thanks for the reminder of a lovely play, Eddie. I agree, it can be taken all those ways, but Jayzuz, mon, ye hiftae get a grip oan yer sense o humor someday.... Be dour as ye like, somebody else will poke fun at ye worse - beat em to the ribticklin. Scots wha hae an a' that.

Here, did you hear about the two blondes? One's a lady driver, bombing up the highway in her red sportscar. The other one, a lady cop, pulls her over and asks for her driver's license. The driver, agitated, can't fin it in her big handbag, and burstd out, "What does it look like??"

The cop says, "It's smal, and square, and has your picture on it."

The driver pulls out a small comppact mirror, looks at it, and hands it to the cop.

THe cop glances at it, hands it back, and says, "OK, you can go ahead. I didn't know you were a cop."

Q: Why do blondes tell blonde jokes

A: So they'll have something to explain to the dumb guys they date for their muscles.

eddie
The Gap Minder

Posts: 7838
Join date: 2011-04-11
Age: 58
Location: Desert Island

Back to top Go down

Re: How to be a babe-magnet: JM Synge's The Playboy of the Western World

Post  eddie on Mon Jun 06, 2011 8:49 am

Eddie wrote:

John McLaughlin wrote:
Jayzuz, mon, ye hiftae get a grip oan yer sense o humor someday.... Be dour as ye like, somebody else will poke fun at ye worse - beat em to the ribticklin. Scots wha hae an a' that.

eddie
The Gap Minder

Posts: 7838
Join date: 2011-04-11
Age: 58
Location: Desert Island

Back to top Go down

View previous topic View next topic Back to top

- Similar topics

Permissions in this forum:
You cannot reply to topics in this forum