Literature Study GuidesMaster Harold And The Boys

Master Harold... and the Boys | Study Guide

Athol Fugard

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Course Hero. "Master Harold... and the Boys Study Guide." Course Hero. 29 Mar. 2019. Web. 13 July 2020. <>.

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Course Hero. (2019, March 29). Master Harold... and the Boys Study Guide. In Course Hero. Retrieved July 13, 2020, from

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Course Hero. "Master Harold... and the Boys Study Guide." March 29, 2019. Accessed July 13, 2020.


Course Hero, "Master Harold... and the Boys Study Guide," March 29, 2019, accessed July 13, 2020,



Athol Fugard

First Performed






About the Title

The title illustrates the relative status of the play's three characters. In the racist society of apartheid South Africa, the white teenager Hally (Harold) has a high enough status to be accorded the honorific title "Master" along with his name. The title in this way signifies assumptions of value implicit in the rigid system of apartheid, a form of segregation, by which 72 percent of the population of the country (indigenous African) were controlled by 15.5 percent (immigrant European whites) in 1980. The two middle-aged black characters in the play answer to the demeaning term "the boys" and are not named, implying the two black men together are not worth as much as a boy who is white.


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