Fathers and Daughters in Shakespeare and Shaw

by Lagretta Tallent Lenker


Analyzes the father-daughter relationships Shakespeare and Shaw used to question gender issues, generational issues, and familial issues, along with censorship and the individual's place in society.

Print Flyer
Cover image for Fathers and Daughters in Shakespeare and Shaw

April 2001


Pages 216
Volumes 1
Size 6 1/8x9 1/4
Topics The Arts/Drama

How can the most silent member of the family carry the message of subversion against venerated institutions of state and society? Why would two playwrights, writing 300 years apart, employ the same dramatic methods for rebelling against the establishment, when these methods are virtually ignored by their contemporaries? This book considers these and similar questions. It examines the historical similarities of the eras in which Shakespeare and Shaw wrote and then explores types of father-daughter interactions, considering each in terms of the existing power structures of society.

These two dramatists draw on themes of incest, daughter sacrifice, role playing, education, and androgyny to create both active and passive daughters. The daughters literally represent a challenge to the patriarchy and metaphorically extend that challenge to such institutions as church and state. The volume argues that the father-daughter relationship was the ideal dramatic vehicle for Shakespeare and Shaw to advance their social and political agendas. By exploring larger issues through the father-daughter relationship, both playwrights were able to avoid the watchful eyes of censors and comment on such topics as the divine right of kings, filial bonds of obedience, and even regicide.

Table of Contents

IntroductionThe Best of Times, The Worst of Times: The Ages of Shaw and ShakespeareDaughter as Passive VerbDaughter as Active VerbIn Care of TheeNever an Innocent RelationshipBibliographyIndex

Look Inside

Other Titles of Interest

Shakespeare's Unorthodox Biography cover imageThe Glamour of Grammar cover imageActor as Anti-Character cover image
Documentary Theatre in the United States cover imageDramatists and the Bomb cover imageReinventing Drama cover image

Product Search

Product Search

Publication Year



Need Help? Try our Search Tips