First published in 1972, this work pursues the question ‘what is comedy?’ In its quest for an answer it explores critical theory, psychology, sociology and metaphysics. It also examines the classical origins of comedy, different kinds of comedy, the rituals of comedy, its relationship with other idioms such as ‘satire’, irony’ and ‘farce’, and compares two major traditions: ‘Aristophanic’ and ‘Shakesperean’ comedy. In doing so, the book demonstrates the indefinable and flexible nature of comedy.
This work will be a valuable resource to those studying drama, and in particular, those focusing on classical and Shakespearean plays.
General Editor’s Preface; Prefatory Note; 1 The Status of Comedy 2. Psychological Theories of Comedy 3. The Classical World 4. ‘Comic Relief’ 5. ‘Comical-Satire’ and ‘Tragi-Comedy’ 6. The Ritual of Comedy 7. Certain Relationships of Comedy 8. The Aristophanic and Shakespearean Traditions; Conclusion: The Metaphysics of Comedy; Bibliography; Index
This set of 37 volumes is a revival of the original Critical Idiom series. First published between 1969 and 1979, the volumes in this series provide concise and accessible introductions to a range of critical terms which are key to the study of literature. This set will be a valuable resource for students working with complex literary terminology.