COMEDY+OF+ERRORS+II+Sept+26 (1)

COMEDY+OF+ERRORS+II+Sept+26 (1) - COMEDY OF ERRORS FARCE AS...

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COMEDY OF ERRORS FARCE AS STRUCTURED CHAOS
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Farce: Impromptu Gag or Planned Chaos? OED etymology: the Old French farce was a term for the extemporaneous ‘gag’ or impromptu buffoonery which the actors in religious dramas often incorporated into their scripted parts. Farce: type of comedy designed to generate “belly laughs.” Characterized by exaggerated or caricatured character types, improbable or ludicrous situations, free use of sexual mixups, verbal humor, vigorous physical action and horseplay. Typically, farce=an episode in a more complex comedy, but can be extended to a whole play , as in the case of Comedy of Errors or Oscar Wilde’s The Importance of Being Earnest. In farce-comedy, opportunities for impromptu humor are incorporated into a very carefully planned overall structure
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Aristotle and The Neoclassical Unities 16 th C. Italian neoclassicists such as Ludovico Castelvetro modified the classical Greek philosopher, Aristotle’s observations about tragic action in his Poetics to create the following prescriptions for an ideal dramatic structure that would produce verisimilitude (truth to life, believability): Unity of time: action of the play should take place within one “revolution of the sun,” i.e., 24 hours. (Aristotle observed that the typical tragedy took place in this time- frame, but did not say that tragedy should stick to this time-span). Unity of place: action of play should be staged in one place (Aristotle never said this). Unity of action: The plot must imitate “one action” without
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Shakespeare and the Unities Shakespeare is notorious for breaking dramatic conventions, especially the unities, in his plays. But in two plays, Comedy of Errors and The Tempest , he does observe all three unities. In Comedy of Errors , moreover, he not only uses the unities to tighten the plot, but he also uses a single prop, a gold chain, as a vehicle for generating a ‘chain’ of chaotic events, involving repeated acts of misrecognition and mistaken identity. The result: comic confusion turns nightmarish
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P.35-6, 2.1.92-103; 111-113: Adriana To Luciana His company must do his minions grace, Whilst I at home starve for a merry look. Hath homely age the alluring beauty took From my poor cheek? then he hath wasted it: Are my discourses dull? barren my wit? If voluble and sharp discourse be marr'd, Unkindness blunts it more than marble hard: Do their gay vestments his affections bait? That's not my fault: he's master of my state: What ruins are in me that can be found, By him not ruin'd? then is he the ground Of my defeatures. Sister, you know he promised me a chain; Would that alone o’ love he would detain So he would keep fair quarter with his bed!
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P.39-41,2.2. 22ff: Dromio (S) beaten ANTIPHOLUS (S): Yea, dost thou jeer and flout me in the teeth? Think'st thou I jest? Hold, take thou that, and that.
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This note was uploaded on 02/17/2012 for the course SAS 101 taught by Professor Unsure during the Spring '11 term at Rutgers.

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COMEDY+OF+ERRORS+II+Sept+26 (1) - COMEDY OF ERRORS FARCE AS...

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