Literature Study GuidesThe School For Scandal

The School for Scandal | Study Guide

Richard Brinsley Sheridan

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Richard Brinsley Sheridan

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About the Title

The title relates to the popularity of malicious scandal and gossip in 18th-century London's upper-class salons. These salons were highly cultured and insular environments in which wit and complex mannerisms were learned as if taught in a school. Middle-class audiences of Sheridan's time delighted in comic plays, called comedies of manners, exposing the foibles of a privileged, self-indulgent class. As portrayed in plays such as The School for Scandal, the upper classes had nothing better to do with their time than to tear down reputations, engage in trivial and superficial pursuits, and score points with each other for witty banter at the expense of the truth.


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