A Discussion Of Freedom By Shaw

2093 words - 8 pages


George Bernard Shaw

"My conscience is the genuine pulpit article, it annoys me to see people comfortable when they ought to be uncomfortable; and I insist on making them think in order to bring them to a conviction of sin." -----Shaw.

The above quoted lines show us the uncompromising character of the man who never thought idealistically about literature, that is to say, one who never romanticized it. He considered all literature to be journalistic and his purpose was to convert the nation to his opinions. He did this in two ways: by writing plays which made people laugh up to a certain point till they realized that they were laughing at themselves, and by chastising their self -complacency with his essays and lectures. It is difficult to say whether his rather opinionated and propagandist attitude contributed much to the enrichment of his plays, for he could never reach the true heights of tragedy. Even in St. Joan, where he could do it, we find the same detached and cynical observer in the last scene, with his relentlessly attacking speeches and sharp intellect which were often confronted by adverse criticism. Yeats stated that the very face of Shaw reminded him of a sewing machine. Nevertheless, Shaw is, till date, one of the rare species of honest persons whose work came out of their firm conviction and unflinching sense of values.

Shaw was indoctrinated into socialism quite early in his life due to his contact with Sidney and Beatrice Webb and William Morris, and his reading of Marx, who, he said, "made a man of me." He was also influenced by the writings of Henry George and he brought a courageous, clear mind to the study of social problems. Like his predecessor Samuel Butler, Shaw tore off veils and laid bare the illusions of complacently blind people. In 1884, he became a founder member of Fabian Society. He called himself "a social reformer and doctrinaire first, last, and all the time." From his early plays he attacked social ills and middle-class indifference to them by turning to the theatre. Widower's Houses (1892) and Mrs. Warren's Profession (1893) dealt with slum landlordism and prostitution respectively - and for the boldness of his attack the latter was banned from the English stage for some years. But that prohibition did not deter him from writing other plays challenging many long- cherished ideas.

Michael Thorpe tells us that "From about 1880 to 1933, when he turned to the far reaching microphone, he was the most formidable and influential platform debater in England." The essay, Freedom, originally a BBC radio talk delivered 18th June, 1935, shows us the person who no more hides behind the mask of a stage protagonist, but lashes out at listeners with extreme energy and provocativeness.

In the beginning of his essay Shaw asks a fundamental question--"what is a perfectly free person?" then he goes on to show the two types of freedom - freedom in a broad sense and...

Find Another Essay On A Discussion of Freedom by Shaw

Analysis of Arms and the Man by George Bernard Shaw

950 words - 4 pages Analysis of Arms and the Man by George Bernard Shaw "Arms and the Man" starts with gunfire on a dark street in a small town. The romantic and willful Raina is about to begin her true-life adventure by sheltering the handsome fugitive Bluntschli, enemy of her equally handsome fiancé Sergius The setting of the play is in war-torn Bulgaria, and focuses not only on the romance between the young people of the play, but the atrocities

A Discussion of Legality Essay

1570 words - 6 pages the house to her 4 months before her graduation and Alice gave her “acceptance” by mail approximately 4 months after her graduation. This left Alice with about 8 months to consider the possible deal. Was Ravi’s deadline Alice’s graduation in April or a reasonable time afterwards or was acceptance open until Alice found adequate employment? Other problems stem from the method of acceptance, which came in the form of a letter by mail, rendering

A discussion of Mark Twain's anti-racist stance in Huck Finn and the novel's theme of freedom for all

1530 words - 6 pages Adventures of Huckleberry Finn by Mark Twain has been heatedly attacked as a novel of racism for decades when, in fact, it is one of the "most anti-racist books ever written in America" (Pinsker 649). Critics have debated this topic since 1885, only to cause more pain than comfort for those who feel put down by the novel. Although some feel Adventures of Huckleberry Finn is a racist novel, which it may appear to be superficially, a deeper

The Importance of Rhetoric and Discussion of Freedom of Speech

1710 words - 7 pages persuasion I can further analyze what my own view is on the freedom of prejudice speech. I was most persuaded and affected by Rauch’s argument for prejudice speech and here’s why: Growing up as a white, middle class girl I never related to the word, “minority.” I never felt as if anyone really had anything to say that I felt prejudice against me, but I also grew up recognizing the privileges I was given as a white, middle class girl. As I got older I

A Dream of Freedom

1241 words - 5 pages people about racial equality and fairness by providing hope and a vision of the future. Dr. King’s speech was intended for different types of audience especially for racial supremacists and African-Americans who were discriminated against. Dr. King’s “I Have a Dream” speech is a valuable and memorable piece of rhetoric. King’s speech includes different types of claim such as fact, value, and policy. The structure of the speech is well-planned

"Pygmalion" by George Bernard Shaw and "Tess of the D'Urbervilles" by Thomas Hardy

1355 words - 5 pages Some story lines overwhelm their heroes or heroines with good luck. Sometimes characters experience misfortune at the beginning of their story but later emerge with their situations resolved. Other times, however, the entire story line works almost completely against the hero or heroine's will until the end. Both Tess of the d'Urbervilles by Thomas Hardy and Pygmalion by George Bernard Shaw feature a female character who experiences several

Comparing Journey of the Magi by Eliot and Pygmalion by Shaw

1149 words - 5 pages T. S. Eliot’s poem ‘Journey of the Magi’ is rich in content, imagery, symbolism and above all Biblical References. The poem throws some powerful questions to all the readers and seeks answers from them. This poem is very deep and hard to understand at the very first reading. Its charm lies in its complexity and ambiguity. Here the poet talks about journey of three wise men from East and their struggle. Their journey starts at a very tough time

A Brief Discussion of Mythology

594 words - 2 pages A Brief Discussion of MythsAccording to Wikipedia, “mythology” signifies a means of myth telling from a culture and involves the study of myths. OED defines myth as traditional stories that include forces, beings, or creatures with supernatural powers that justifies “a religious belief or ritual, or a natural phenomenon.” Myths were part of all early cultures before the development of writing and reflected the beliefs of

A Discussion of Qualitative Research

1284 words - 6 pages Qualitative Research This will be a discussion of qualitative research. It will define qualitative research, as well as look at the similarities and differences in the quantitative and qualitative research paradigms. Furthermore, this discussion will look into qualitative case study research and phenomenological research, with further contemplation of purposes, methods, and limitations for these two methods. Qualitative research is concerned

A Brief Discussion of Judaism

1251 words - 5 pages evil of them for it. However, I do think it a little silly for them to be waiting for a warrior savior, as the message of God is that of peace. But, if you stop to consider the fact that to the first Jews, Yahweh was a tribal god, something of a warrior God for his people who loosed them from Pharaoh by performing terrible and wondrous deeds, it is understandable.To speak of the hardening of Pharaoh's heart, the discussion that we held in class

What is the significance of the play st. joan by bernard shaw?

1134 words - 5 pages , the manner in which the characters speak and the way they speak to each other. Shaw's plays are referred to as 'a drama of ideas' as they do not involve action.The play, St. Joan was written by Shaw in 1923, two years after Joan's canonization, but is set in the medieval age, namely, 1429. There are several medieval elements in the play. This is seen when the steward says ' there is a spell on us: we are bewitched' as an explanation for why there

Similar Essays

Pygmalion A Play By Bernard Shaw

1689 words - 7 pages summary of the play will be provided. Next, the theme of language and social class will be addressed. The last part will be devoted to the theme of gender and specifically the position of women. George Bernard Shaw’s play Pygmalion is based on an ancient Greek myth where a sculptor fell in love with a statue he created himself. In this play, Shaw tells a story of the protagonist, Eliza Doolittle, a poor flower girl who is taught by the professor of

Burn Baby Burn A Creative Piece Of Writing Based On St. Joan By Bernard Shaw

843 words - 3 pages would happen and that I should forgive these poor people who don't know any better. You may only remember me now as an old flame.(A guard walking next to Joan hears her and replies angrily)Guard: Shut up, you daughter of Satan. The only thing that we'll remember will be your cries for mercy and how they fuelled the atmosphere. Nobody is going to listen to you, we will be too busy cooking our sausages and baked potatoes.You were grilled by the

Metamorphosis Of Eliza Doolittle In Pygmalion By George Bernard Shaw

1688 words - 7 pages The Metamorphosis of Eliza Doolittle in Pygmalion by George Bernard Shaw   The benefits of acquiring an education are not limited to the academic aspects often associated with it. Part of the edification it bestows includes being enabled to reach new insight, being empowered to cultivate a new awareness, and being endowed with a new understanding of life and of self. In Bernard Shaw's Pygmalion, Eliza Doolittle experiences this type of

An Analysis Of Saint Joan By George Bernard Shaw

1666 words - 7 pages when the innocent are slain in the name of law, and their wrongs are undone by slandering the pure of heart." This statement can be interpreted as a theme of the play since Joan's story illustrates exactly the point that Cauchon is making. By explicitly stating such theme, Shaw undercuts the power of the preceding action and weakens the dramatic effect of the play. Cauchon continues on to summarize his action, which we've already seen
He Private Lives Of Great Animals Episode 3 | Jillisa Lynn | The Net Serie TV Streaming Download