Hedda Gablerby Henrik Ibsen, William-Alan Landes
Universally condemned in 1890 when it was written, Hedda Gabler has since become one of Ibsen's most frequently performed plays. Its title role is elusive and complex: Hedda is an intelligent and ambitious woman, who has no means of finding personal fulfilment in the stifling world of late nineteenth-century bourgeois society. Too frightened of scandal to become involved with a brilliant, wayward writer, she opts for a conventional but loveless marriage in the hope of finding surrogate fulfilment through her husband's career. Blending comedy and tragedy disconcertingly together, Ibsen probes the thwarted aspirations and hidden anxieties of his characters against a background of contemporary social conditions and attitudes.
- Players Press, Incorporated
- Publication date:
- Edition description:
- New Edition
- Product dimensions:
- 5.50(w) x 8.50(h) x (d)
- Age Range:
- 13 - 17 Years
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From the view of a Theater major, this translation and adaptation of Henrik Ibsen's 'Hedda Gabler' allows an audience (and a reader, for that matter) to follow all the intricate little jokes and personality quirks. Unlike other translations, the way each character speaks is distinct from all the others. The words aren't the only thing translated from the Norwegian; the nuances and attitudes are as well. George Tesman is amusingly obtuse, and his Auntie Julia isn't simply the sweet old lady she appears to be. Judge Brack and Hedda can share some wonderful inside jokes without the rest of the characters noticing. Eilert Lovborg isn't just bipolar in his actions but also in his words. And unlike many other translations, it is actually possible to be sympathetic to Hedda's situation and not simply loath her for her attitude. One of Ibsen's greatest talents is his way with words: the characters are forever saying one thing and meaning something entirely different. As 'Hedda Gabler' is a play, it is not meant to be simply read; it is meant to be seen, and Jon Robin Baitz certainly makes it easier for the actors to get across the message Ibsen was trying to send. And studying the play intensively during rehearsals and production of 'Hedda Gabler' really make it easier to appreciate exactly how much is going on. It takes much more than just a reading to understand 'Hedda': at its finest, it takes a really stellar cast, especially in the title role, to pull it off.
No godmodding.<br> No weird-ass drama.<br> No killing unless necessary.<p> Done. Boom.
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Henrik Ibsen¿s ¿Hedda Gabler¿ traces the final fall of the play¿s antagonist, Hedda Gabbler. In Act I, we are first introduced to George¿s Aunt Julia, who is telling their long-time servant, Breta, that she must move to George and Mrs. Hedda Tessman¿s house, to act as their servant. Breta is distressed over this, for she fears that she will not be a good enough servant to Hedda, being General Gabler¿s daughter, and already accustomed to such fine and particular treatment. The fact that Breta is already distressed implies that Hedda may be a difficult woman to please. Hedda¿s ill treatment towards Berta throughout the act, on top of her outward criticism of Aunt Julia¿s hat, gives us insight to how truly impossible she is to please. She is rude to human beings in general, especially of a lower class, and has a flagrant disregard for her husband, by insulting his aunt¿s hat, which Julia bought to try and impress her. Hedda then manipulates Mrs. Elvstead into divulging all of her secrets of her association with Ejlert Lovborg, his whereabouts, and present situation. Hedda uses that information to then manipulate Lovborg, outwardly embarrassing both, having no shame. Hedda is frequently saying one thing, but meaning another. Because George is not as smart or quick, and also refuses to believe Hedda capable of thinking such sinister thoughts, she quickly covers up her true intentions. Due to boredom in her marriage, boredom in general, her discontent at an affair between Mrs. Elvstead and Ejlert Lovborg, and overall hostility, she encourages Lovborg to take his life in a ¿beautiful manner¿. Obviously, Hedda cares little about his life; we wonder if she cares about anyone¿s life at all, considering the tragic move she makes at the end of the play. Henrik Ibsen¿s ¿Hedda Gabler¿ lets us into the mind of a true psychopath, as we witness her every deranged move and thought, and are left with quite an unsettling feeling.