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on 15 March 2013
The earlier York Notes guide to Wilde's play seems to me much the better option. It is an elusive play to submit to critical analysis and it is asking a great deal that a study guide will prove worthwhile while not losing contact with the marvellous light-hearted spirit of it, which even amateur performances can capture on stage. This account verges on the solemn and flirts with the leaden. Even the plot summaries are wordy and absurdly lengthy and the humour, considered exclusively in a satirical context, is sadly neglected. To treat the play with such ponderous seriousness and as social reality is a betrayal of both writer and audiences , who have responded to the child-like characters and the delight in the possibilities of language that, however familiar to us now, we can still find enchanting. There are useful facts about early productions and about Wilde's life but the play in the hands of this writer is more a subject for pathology than delight.
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I found this book to be invauable in studying The Importance of Being Earnest. It includes notes on Oscar Wilde and of the period the play is set in. There are very detailed character analasyses for each of the characters explaining their role in the plot and where the characters may have been derived from, i.e comedia del arte and so forth. The plot is also analysed in great detail. I used the book to get a greater understanding of the play and without it I would never have fully grasped the social irony Oscar Wilde employed in writing The Importance of Being Earnest.
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on 19 February 2015
Too general for a really good critique and not enough detail or analysis. I felt this was more GCSE level, not A'Level. I would have liked to see more information on staging of the production and details of Oscar Wilde's life.
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on 29 October 2014
Brilliant! Great service and a top product!
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