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English Test 2

Terms in this set (28)

Author: Oscar Wilde
- Wilde was a homosexual man who went to jail and died in his 40's. Play is a satire.

Year Written: 1895


John (Jack/Ernest) Worthing, J.P. - In Hertfordshire, where he has a country estate, Jack is known as Jack. In London he is known as Ernest. As a baby, Jack was discovered in a handbag. Jack is in love with Gwendolen

Algernon Moncrieff - He is the nephew of Lady Bracknell, cousin of Gwendolen Fairfax, and best friend of Jack. He has invented a fictional friend, "Bunbury," an invalid who allows Algernon to wriggle out of unpleasant or dull social obligations.

Gwendolen Fairfax - Algernon's cousin and Lady Bracknell's daughter. Gwendolen is in love with Jack, whom she knows as Ernest.

Cecily Cardew - Jack's ward, the granddaughter of the gentlemen who found and adopted Jack. Cecily is probably the most realistically drawn character. Like Gwendolen, she is obsessed with the name Ernest, that had prompted her to fall in love with Jack's brother Ernest in her imagination and to invent an elaborate romance and courtship between them.

Lady Bracknell - Algernon's snobbish, mercenary, and domineering aunt and Gwendolen's motherWilde manages to satirize the hypocrisy and stupidity of the British aristocracy. Lady Bracknell values ignorance, which she sees as "a delicate exotic fruit." She is narrow-minded.

Miss Prism - Cecily's governess. She highly approves of Jack's presumed respectability and harshly criticizes his "unfortunate" brother. Miss Prism's severe pronouncements have a way of going so far over the top that they inspire laughter. She speaks of having once written a novel whose manuscript was "lost" or "abandoned." Also, she entertains romantic feelings for Dr. Chasuble.

Rev. Canon Chasuble, D.D. - The rector on Jack's estate. Both Jack and Algernon approach Dr. Chasuble to request that they be christened "Ernest." Dr. Chasuble entertains secret romantic feelings for Miss Prism. The initials after his name stand for "Doctor of Divinity."

Lane - Algernon's manservant. When the play opens, Lane is the only person who knows about Algernon's practice of "Bunburying." Lane appears only in Act I.

Merriman - The butler at the Manor House, Jack's estate in the country. Merriman appears only in Acts II and III.
Author: Tennessee Williams
- A southern (American) writer who explored behaviors, changing economy and conflicting cultures. Play is a tragedy

Year: 1947 (post WW 2)


Blanche DuBois - Stella's older sister, who was a high school English teacher in Laurel, Mississippi, until she was forced to leave her post. fragile woman around the age of thirty. After losing Belle Reve, the DuBois family home, Blanche arrives at the Kowalski apartment. she has strong sexual urges and has had many lovers, She avoids reality, preferring to live in her own imagination. Blanche's instability grows along with her misfortune. Stanley sees through Blanche and finds out the details of her past, destroying her relationship with his friend Mitch. Stanley also destroys what's left of Blanche by raping her and then having her committed to an insane asylum.

Stella Kowalski - Blanche's younger sister, about twenty-five years old. Stella possesses the same timeworn aristocratic heritage as Blanche, but she jumped the sinking ship in her late teens and left Mississippi for New Orleans. Stella married lower-class Stanley, with whom she shares a robust sexual relationship. Stella's union with Stanley is both animal and spiritual, violent but renewing. After Blanche's arrival, Stella is torn between her sister and her husband. she stands by Stanley, perhaps in part because she gives birth to his child near the play's end. she eventually dismisses Blanche's claim that Stanley raped her. Stella's denial of reality at the play's end shows that she has more in common with her sister than she thinks.

Stanley Kowalski - The husband of Stella. Stanley is the epitome of vital force. He is loyal to his friends, passionate to his wife, and heartlessly cruel to Blanche. With his Polish ancestry, he represents the new, heterogeneous America. He sees himself as a social leveler, and wishes to destroy Blanche's social pretensions. Around thirty years of age, Stanley, who fought in World War II, now works as an auto-parts salesman. He lacks ideals and imagination. By the play's end, he is a disturbing degenerate: he beats his wife and rapes his sister-in-law. Horrifyingly, he shows no remorse.

Harold "Mitch" Mitchell - Stanley's army friend, coworker, and poker buddy, who courts Blanche until he finds out that she lied to him about her sordid past. Though he is clumsy, sweaty, and has unrefined interests like muscle building, Mitch is more sensitive and more gentlemanly than Stanley Blanche and Mitch are an unlikely match: Mitch doesn't fit the bill of the chivalric hero, the man Blanche dreams will come to rescue her. Nevertheless, they bond over their lost loves, and when the doctor takes Blanche away against her will, Mitch is the only person present besides Stella who despairs over the tragedy.

Eunice - Stella's friend, upstairs neighbor, and landlady. Eunice and her husband, Steve, represent the low-class, carnal life that Stella has chosen for herself. Like Stella, Eunice accepts her husband's affections despite his physical abuse of her. At the end of the play, when Stella hesitates to stay with Stanley at Blanche's expense, Eunice forbids Stella to question her decision and tells her she has no choice but to disbelieve Blanche.

Allan Grey - The young man with poetic aspirations whom Blanche fell in love with and married as a teenager. One afternoon, she discovered Allan in bed with an older male friend. That evening at a ball, after she announced her disgust at his homosexuality, he ran outside and shot himself in the head. Allan's death, which marked the end of Blanche's sexual innocence, has haunted her ever since.

A Young Collector - A teenager who comes to the Kowalskis' door to collect for the newspaper when Blanche is home alone. The boy leaves bewildered after Blanche hits on him and gives him a passionate farewell kiss.

Shep Huntleigh - A former suitor of Blanche's whom she met again a year before her arrival in New Orleans Blanche hopes he will provide the financial support for her and Stella to escape from Stanley. her fantasy that Shep is coming to sweep her away becomes more and more real to her. Shep never appears onstage.

Steve - Stanley's poker buddy who lives upstairs with his wife, Eunice. Like Stanley, Steve is a brutish, hot-blooded, physically fit male and an abusive husband.

A Negro Woman - In Scene One, the Negro woman is sitting on the steps talking to Eunice when Blanche arrives, and she finds Stanley's openly sexual gestures toward Stella hilarious. Later, in Scene Ten, we see her scurrying across the stage in the night as she rifles through a prostitute's lost handbag.

A Doctor - At the play's finale, the doctor arrives to whisk Blanche off to an asylum. He and the nurse initially seem to be heartless institutional caretakers, but, in the end, the doctor appears more kindly as he takes off his jacket and leads Blanche away. This image of the doctor ironically conforms to Blanche's notions of the chivalric Southern gentleman who will offer her salvation.

A Mexican Woman - A vendor of Mexican funeral decorations who frightens Blanche by issuing the plaintive call "Flores para los muertos," which means "Flowers for the dead."

A Nurse - Also called the "Matron," she accompanies the doctor to collect Blanche and bring her to an institution. She possesses a severe, unfeminine manner and has a talent for subduing hysterical patients.
major conflict · Blanche DuBois, an aging Southern debutante, arrives at her sister's home in New Orleans hoping to start a new life after losing her ancestral mansion, her job, and her reputation in her hometown of Laurel, Mississippi. Blanche's brother-in-law, a macho working-class guy named Stanley Kowalski, is so filled with class resentment that he seeks to destroy Blanche's character in New Orleans as well. His cruelty, combined with Blanche's fragile, insecure personality, leaves her mentally detached from reality by the play's end.

rising action · Blanche immediately rouses the suspicion of Stanley, who (wrongly) suspects Blanche of swindling Stella out of her inheritance. Blanche grows to despise Stanley when she sees him drunkenly beat her pregnant sister. Stanley permanently despises Blanche after he overhears her trying to convince Stella to leave Stanley because he is common. Already suspicious of Blanche's act of superiority, Stanley researches Blanche's past. He discovers that in Laurel Blanche was known for her sexual promiscuity and for having an affair with a teenage student. He reports his findings to Blanche's suitor, Mitch, dissuading Mitch from marrying Blanche.

climax · After Stanley treats Blanche cruelly during her birthday dinner, giving her a bus ticket back to Laurel as a present, Stella goes into labor. She and Stanley depart for the hospital, leaving Blanche alone in the house. Mitch arrives, drunk, and breaks off his relationship with Blanche. Blanche, alone in the apartment once more, drowns herself in alcohol and dreams of an impossible rescue. Stanley returns to the apartment from the hospital and rapes Blanche.

falling action · Weeks after the rape, Stella secretly prepares for Blanche's departure to an insane asylum. She tells her neighbor Eunice that she simply couldn't believe Blanche's accusation that Stanley raped her. Unaware of reality, Blanche boasts that she is leaving to join a millionaire suitor. When the doctor arrives, Blanche leaves after a minor struggle, and only Stella and Mitch, who sits in the kitchen with Stanley's poker players, seem to express real remorse for her.

themes · Fantasy's inability to overcome reality; the relationship between sex and death; dependence on men * Nostalgia **

motifs · Light; bathing; drunkenness

symbols · Shadows and cries; the Varsouviana polka; "It's Only a Paper Moon"; meat

Class Notes: Stella adapted to a new world. Blanche has been broken. Mitch cares when B shows her real self and talks about past husbands suicide. B is looking for salvation / safety. Sees that in Mitch. Bday party is big turning point. B wont go in direct light for fear of revealing age.
Author: Brecht (was a political playwright and wanted things addressed and changed)

Year: 1938-40


Wong: A water seller. He interacts with the gods in dreams. His hand is injured by Mr. Shu Fu, who attacks him with a curling iron.

First - Third God: The first, second and third of three gods who arrive at the city of Setzuan in the Prologue, looking for a good person. Their task is to find people on the Earth "living lives worthy of human beings."

Shen Te/Shui Ta: Shen Te is a former prostitute who has bought a tobacco shop with the money the gods gave her after she let them spend the night in her home when no one else would welcome them. After being taken advantage of for being so "good," Shen Te invents a male alter ego, Shui Ta, her supposed visiting cousin. Shui Ta is economically wise and does not give handouts the way Shen Te often did.

Mrs. Shin: The former owner of Shen Te's tobacco shop. She demands a free handout of rice and money from Shen Te, since now she is too poor to feed her children. After witnessing Shu Fu injure Wong's hand with a curling iron, she convinces Wong to take the case to a judge but then betrays him by "getting on the right side of Mr. Shu Fu."

Unemployed Man: He enters Shen Te's tobacco shop asking for a free cigarette and she gives it to him.

Carpenter: The carpenter has installed shelves in the tobacco shop before Shen Te purchased it, and he demands one hundred silver dollars for his work. She does not have it, so her "cousin" Shui Ta argues the carpenter down to only twenty silver dollars.

Mrs. Mi Tzu: Shen Te's landlady. She demands six months' rent in advance, rather unfairly, and Shui Ta tells her that Shen Te does not have the money.

Yang Sun: An unemployed pilot with whom Shen Te falls in love. When she meets him, he is about to commit suicide because he cannot work as a pilot anymore.

Old *****: Scene 3, she sees Shen Te just before Shen Te meets Yang Sun about to hang himself. She is resentful of Shen Te for finding success in a profession other than prostitution.

Policeman: He arrests the boy of the mooching family after the boy steals food from the bakery around the corner from the tobacco shop. He convinces Shui Ta to put out a marriage advertisement for his "cousin," Shen Te.

Mr. Shu Fu: A barber who wants to marry Shen Te. He injures Wong's hand by whacking it with a hot curling iron. He also writes Shen Te a blank check so she can pay her rent, and offers her the use of his cabins.
The play begins with a monologue by Wong, the water seller. He explains to the audience that he has heard that a few of the highest-ranking gods are on their way to the city of Setzuan. Before they leave the next morning, she asks them how to live a good life and still make ends meet; they have no answers. the gods decide to give her money. They explain they are only paying their "hotel bill," and then they leave.
Scene 1: Shen Te bought a tobacco shop from Mrs. Shin who demands that Shen Te give her some rice and money; Shen Te has been made to feel guilty and help an entire family in addition to Mrs. Shin. A carpenter enters and demands a hundred silver dollars for the shelves he installed in the shop while Mrs. Shin owned it. When Shen Te asks him to have patience, he starts to take the shelves back. The wife suggests that Shen Te let her "cousin" settle the affair when he arrives, inventing the character of Shen Te's cousin on the spot. Mrs. Mi Tzu, the landlady, demands references from Shen Te, and since Shen Te has none, she goes along with the wife's lie about her cousin who does not exist. She names him Shui Ta,
Scene 2: arrival of Shui Ta. It is just Shen Te disguised as a man. He fools the family that has been staying in the tobacco shop, even though they know they invented this character. He tells them to leave, and bargains with the carpenter about the price of the shelves and with Mrs. Mi Tzu about the rent she is demanding.
As Scene 3: Yang Sun, described as "a young man in rags," is contemplating hanging himself in a park. they are immediately infatuated with each other. Wong tells the gods that Shen Te loves someone (presumably Yang Sun) and that she is "doing good deeds all the time." it is clear to the gods that her good deeds are unsustainable.
Scene 4: an altercation between Mr. Shu Fu, the barber, and Wong, who has been trying to sell water to Shu Fu's customers. Shu Fu chases Wong out of his shop and hits his hand with a hot curling iron, burning it badly. The old woman who owns the carpet shop next door with her husband offers to loan Shen Te two hundred silver dollars so she can pay her rent. Yang Sun's mother, enters and tells Shen Te that her son has been offered a job from the director of the airfield in Peking, but that he needs to pay five hundred silver dollars for it. Shen Te pledges to try to help Yang Sun.
Scene 5: Yang Sun enters and interacts with Shui Ta, having no idea he is actually talking to his lover, Shen Te.Wong and the policeman enter, and Shui Ta betrays Wong (but tells the truth) in saying that his cousin was not present at the time of the assault with the curling iron. When Yang Sun reminds her of how he loves her, she chooses to ignore the horrible things he said about her, and agrees to marry him.
Scene 5a: Shen Te explains to the audience that the old woman had to ask for her two hundred silver dollars back, since the anxiety of having loaned them made her husband ill. She said she would.
Scene 6: Shen Te is there with her wedding guests. Yang reveals to his mother that Shen Te has said she cannot sell the shop for him because of the loan from the old couple; he doesn't want to marry Shen Te now. Without the rest of the money, Yang Sun will not marry her. At this point, Shen Te tells Yang Sun that Shui Ta will not bring the three hundred silver dollars, since he told her that Yang Sun bought only one ticket to Peking, revealing that she knows about the conversation he had with her "cousin" the day before. Yang Sun shows her two tickets; he tells her that they will have to leave his mother behind. the priest leaves, followed by all the other wedding guests.
Scene 6a: the gods visit Wong in a dream again, and he asks them to intervene in Shen Te's life. They refuse.
Scene 7: Mr. Shu Fu enters and hands Shen Te a blank check, explaining that he wants to support her so she can continue being good. Shen Te feels her belly and realizes that she is, in fact, pregnant. Shen Te leaves and returns dressed as Shui Ta. Shui Ta says that all the people may only stay in Shu Fu's cabins if they work for Shen Te. Mrs. Mi Tzu enters and Shui Ta tells her that he has decided not to sell the shop after all. As Shui Ta leads the group of new workers back to Shu Fu's cabins, Mrs. Shin realizes that Shen Te and Shui Ta must be the same person.
Scene 7a: Wong tells the gods that he has had a nightmare about Shen Te and asks them to help her, but they refuse, saying that helping Shen Te would only create more problems and would be too much work for them.
Scene 8: Mrs. Yang reveals this to the audience, explaining that Shui Ta has given her son new motivation and a job in the tobacco factory. By now, he has been promoted to foreman.
Scene 9: now Shui Ta is quite fat (because Shen Te is pregnant). Mrs. Shin tells him that the old couple has lost the carpet shop because the repayment of the 200 silver dollars came too late. Then she reveals to Shui Ta that she knows he is the same person as Shen Te, and that "he" is pregnant.
Chapter 10: set in a courtroom. The policeman introduces the judges, who are the three gods. After testimonies for and against him, Shui Ta begins to cave in and tells the judges to clear the courtroom so he can make a confession. When the courtroom is cleared, Shui Ta reveals to the gods that he recognizes them and that he is, in fact, Shen Te. the first god chooses to be in denial about it. He says that Shen Te is still good, though the other two gods insist that he did not hear a word she said and that he is ignoring the fact that she committed bad deeds while disguised as Shui Ta. The gods exit, singing "The Trio of the Vanishing Gods on the Cloud" as Shen Te's cries for help interrupt them.

*******Brecht added the epilogue after the rest of the play; it can be spoken either by Shen Te or by Wong. In the epilogue, it is acknowledged, "A nasty ending was slipped up on us;" the play has ended with no satisfactory conclusion and it must be frustrating to the audience. So the audience is implored to "write the happy ending of the play!" They must figure out for themselves how to reconcile goodness in a world where it apparently cannot exist.

Theme: goodness (Gods go out to search for goodness, thats all that Shen Te trys to be for people which is why they take advantage of her)
Two men, Vladimir and Estragon, meet near a tree. They converse on various topics and reveal that they are waiting there for a man named Godot. While they wait, two other men enter. Pozzo is on his way to the market to sell his slave, Lucky. He pauses for a while to converse with Vladimir and Estragon. Lucky entertains them by dancing and thinking, and Pozzo and Lucky leave.

After Pozzo and Lucky leave, a boy enters and tells Vladimir that he is a messenger from Godot. He tells Vladimir that Godot will not be coming tonight, but that he will surely come tomorrow. Vladimir asks him some questions about Godot and the boy departs. After his departure, Vladimir and Estragon decide to leave, but they do not move as the curtain falls.

The next night, Vladimir and Estragon again meet near the tree to wait for Godot. Lucky and Pozzo enter again, but this time Pozzo is blind and Lucky is dumb. Pozzo does not remember meeting the two men the night before. They leave and Vladimir and Estragon continue to wait.

Shortly after, the boy enters and once again tells Vladimir that Godot will not be coming. He insists that he did not speak to Vladimir yesterday. After he leaves, Estragon and Vladimir decide to leave, but again they do not move as the curtain falls, ending the play.


Class Notes: Theater of the Absurd, repetitive conversation, act of waiting, WW2 caused people to think Godot IS NOT A GOD REFERENCE, Existentialism, born to die, nothing makes sense and nothing means anything anymore.
Author: Suzan Parks

Year: 1994


Foundling Father: The protagonist the foundling father is a black grave digger who bears a strong resemblance to Abraham Lincoln. He is "tall and thinly built just like the Great Man." He is known to "dig his graves quickly and neatly."[5] He is frequently referred to as the Lesser Known as opposed to the Great Man Abraham Lincoln. He is married to Lucy and is the father of Brazil. His experience at the Great Hole of History on his honeymoon shapes his life and introduces a summoning to head West and dig a replica. He recreates scenes from Lincoln's life, especially the assassination by John Wilkes Booth. According to his wife, digging was his livelihood, but fakin was his callin

Lucy: Lucy is the wife of the Foundling Father, and she is also the mother of Brazil. The stage directions of Act Two describe Lucy as circulating with an ear trumpet. Lucy is a Confidence, keeping the secrets of the dying. For example, for 19 years she keeps the deathbed secret of Bram Price Senior that he wore lifts in his shoes. She became a confidence because as a child she happened to be in the same room as her Uncle when he died. Her family wanted to know what his last words were, but he hadn't said anything. However, her family believed he had and that she was "holding on to thuh words" and so they announced that she was a Confidence.[5]

Brazil: Brazil is the son of the Foundling Father and Lucy, and his role in the family mourning business is to be the weeper and moaner. He was taught to wail on "the 100th anniversary of the founding of our country."[5] Then, in the following years he learned "the weep," "the sob," "the moan," and finally the "gnash."[5] At the replica Great Hole of History in Act Two, Brazil is digging for items to place in thuh Hall of Wonders.

Place: The hole is an exact replica of the Great Hole of History.