Teeming with lively humor and satirical plot devices, this timeless comedy by one of France's greatest playwrights follows the outrageous activities of a penniless scoundrel and religious pretender. Invited to live in his benefactor's house, he wreaks havoc among family members by breaking off the daughter's engagement, attempting to seduce his hostess, and resorting… See more details below
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Teeming with lively humor and satirical plot devices, this timeless comedy by one of France's greatest playwrights follows the outrageous activities of a penniless scoundrel and religious pretender. Invited to live in his benefactor's house, he wreaks havoc among family members by breaking off the daughter's engagement, attempting to seduce his hostess, and resorting to blackmail and extortion. Essential reading for students of theater and literature.
The new Steiner Tartuffe offers welcome relief from all the rhymed translations that make Moliere sound like a third-rate Restoration poet while creating the (false) impression that verbal dexterity and wit trump all other values in the great comic playwright's dramaturgy. Steiner's crisp, lucid proseher adroitly balanced sentences are especially effective at conveying the slippery rhetoric of Tartuffe's seductionsunfolds the plot and characters of Moliere's play with an unaccustomed clarity, presenting the ideological clashes of the play with a bluntness many other translations attenuate. Roger Herzel's Introduction is well-focused for those encountering Molière for the first time and informed throughout by his own excellent scholarship. --Jim Carmody, University of California, San Diego
This dynamic new translation of Tartuffe conveys the subject matter of Moliere's perennial masterpiece in a way that resonates for contemporary audiences. Prudence Steiner has modernized and revitalized the text, making its burning and scandalous tone stand out, as it does in the original French. The thorough introduction to the play skillfully invites the reader into the dark and controversial world of Tartuffe. --Florent Masse, Princeton University
This translation is a welcome relief from the ungainly verse translations of Tartuffe that dominate the field. The introduction by Prof. Herzel is detailed, scholarly, and readable, and the translation of the play is stageable, therefore a good one to teach theatre students. --Dr. Rosemarie Bank, Kent State University
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Meet the Author
Moliere (1622-73) is known as the greatest French writer of comedy. His plays include The Misanthrope, Tartuffe, and The School for Wives, all available in an omnibus edition from Methuen Drama.
Award-winning poet, playwright and children's author Roger McGough made his name as one of the 'Liverpool Poets' with Adrian Henri and Brian Patten. His most recent book of poetry is Everyday Eclipses (2002) and his Collected Poems was published in 2003. He is a National Curriculum recommended poet for secondary English.
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