George Bernard Shaw's

George Bernard Shaw's "Saint Joan" - A Character Analysis

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George Bernard Shawa€™s Saint Joan, first produced in New York in 1923, is said to be the first modern English drama, which inspired many authors to follow his example. But what exactly makes his drama so appealing? This question is ought to be discussed in the course of this term paper. The main argument will follow the character of Joan in the drama and Shawa€™s ideas of the world which he interlaced with the character of Joan. The character of Joan is particularly interesting because it is well based on historical facts, but also consolidates Shawa€™s ideas on progress, nationalism, and religion. This, on the one hand, gives the reader of the drama insights into Shawa€™s ideas of the world and, on the other hand, points out important topics in society during Shawa€™s time. All of this will be discussed in this term paper, regarding the question how Joana€™s character represents these ideas. The second main focus of this essay will lie on the literary representation of Joana€™s character. The study questions this paper will follow are: How is her character presented? What character traits are portrait in Joan? What does this tell us about Shawa€™s world view? The argument of this term paper reasons that Shaw presents his view of the world and his ideas of progress, nationalism, and religion through the character of Joan. Shaw, therefore, creates her as a lower social class heroine with great ideas before her time. To support this argument a look will be taken at, as already mentioned, Joana€™s character development in the course of the drama, Joana€™s world which separates her from the other characters, and at Joana€™s downfall which is brought about by her separation and her moral flaws. This is done in order to create a full picture of the character of Joan and to effectively present how Shaw connected his world view to her. The historical Joan, the circumstances of her time, and the time period, in which Shaw lived, will not be discussed since this would exceed the purpose of this term paper. Unfortunately, the library of the University of Hanover does not offer much literature on this topic. Thus, this term paper is for the most part composed of the observations made in class and my own thoughts on the topic. Yet, two texts on Joana€™s character will be taken into account. The first is a€œNotes on George Bernard Shawa€™s Saint Joana€ published by Methuen and the latter a€œSaint Joan: Notesa€ by F. L. Lindsay.This is done in order to create a full picture of the character of Joan and to effectively present how Shaw connected his world view to her.

Title:George Bernard Shaw's "Saint Joan" - A Character Analysis
Author:Kristin Unger
Publisher:GRIN Verlag - 2007-07-06


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