Event Title

A Melody in a Different Key: Reconstructing Cultural Subjectivity from Shaw to O’Casey to Hansberry

Presenter Information

Henry DuBeau, Oberlin CollegeFollow

Location

King Building 101

Document Type

Presentation

Start Date

4-27-2018 5:30 PM

End Date

4-27-2018 6:50 PM

Abstract

This paper traces a direct line of influence between three of the 20th century’s most famous playwrights: George Bernard Shaw, Sean O’Casey, and Lorraine Hansberry. Through a comparative analysis of three of their plays—John Bull’s Other Island, Juno and the Paycock, and A Raisin in the Sun, respectively—supplemented with biographical and historical information, a shared set of themes and dramatic goals can be derived from their works even though they were intended for vastly different audiences. Most research that draws connections between these dramatists tends to segment them into pairs. However, by addressing them as a cohesive unit we can observe how naturalist critiques of the Irish Literary Revival would later inform post-war African American drama.

Keywords:

theater, Irish drama, African American drama, socialism

Notes

FEATURED PRESENTATION
Session VII, Panel 17 - Cultural | Producers
Moderator: Afia Ofori-Mensa, Assistant Dean and Director of Undergraduate Research, Assistant Professor of Comparative American Studies and Africana Studies

Major

Theater; Law and Society

Advisor(s)

Justin Emeka, Theater
Greggor Mattson, Sociology

Project Mentor(s)

Caroline Jackson Smith, Theater

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Apr 27th, 5:30 PM Apr 27th, 6:50 PM

A Melody in a Different Key: Reconstructing Cultural Subjectivity from Shaw to O’Casey to Hansberry

King Building 101

This paper traces a direct line of influence between three of the 20th century’s most famous playwrights: George Bernard Shaw, Sean O’Casey, and Lorraine Hansberry. Through a comparative analysis of three of their plays—John Bull’s Other Island, Juno and the Paycock, and A Raisin in the Sun, respectively—supplemented with biographical and historical information, a shared set of themes and dramatic goals can be derived from their works even though they were intended for vastly different audiences. Most research that draws connections between these dramatists tends to segment them into pairs. However, by addressing them as a cohesive unit we can observe how naturalist critiques of the Irish Literary Revival would later inform post-war African American drama.