SkandiLit

Scandinavian Literature in Translation || Littérature scandinave en traduction

Henrik Ibsen: Four Major Plays

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New edition:

Four Major Plays
Henrik Ibsen
Oxford University Press
ISBN 978-0-19-953619-1
8 June 2008
$9.95 in Canada

9780199536191

A Doll’s House provoked uproar when it made its Scandinavian debut in 1879. In it, and its immediate successor, Ghosts, Ibsen brought to light attitudes that a self-righteous, hypocritical society would have preferred to leave unexamined; his heroines’ perceptions about society and their position in it are conveyed with a clarity that is still shockingly dramatic.

In Hedda Gabler and The Master Builder Ibsen shifted his focus from the pressures exerted on women by society to the pressures individuals exert on other individuals in their urge to dominate and control one another. Hedda Gabler, ‘a-crawl with the foulest passions of humanity’, as one contemporary reviewer claimed, is also a flawed idealist in an anguished private dilemma; in creating her Ibsen brought dramatic prose towards the expression of a reality beneath the surface of words.

This collection of plays is taken from the Oxford Ibsen, James McFarlane’s acclaimed scholarly edition.

Written by Thomas

2009-02-15 at 15:19

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