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The Hostage Summary
Brendan Behan

Everything you need to understand or teach The Hostage by Brendan Behan.

  • The Hostage Summary & Study Guide
  • 30 The Hostage Lessons
  • 20 Activities
  • 180 Multiple Choice Questions
  • 60 Short Essay Questions
  • 20 Essay Questions
  • Pre-Made Tests and Quizzes
  • ...and more

The Hostage Summary


Behan's absurdist tragi-comedy, The Hostage, was originally written in Irish Gaelic and performed in that language as An Giall at the Damer Hall, St. Stephen's Green in Dublin, Ireland, in 1957. Following the success of that production, Behan translated the play into English and Joan Littlewood, the innovative director of the Theater Workshop in London agreed to direct it. The premiere of The Hostage opened on the 14th of October, 1958, at Littlewood's Theater Royal in Stratford, London.

The Hostage received mixed reviews upon its debut, but as Littlewood's Theater Workshop became increasingly well-known and respected, interest in the original production increased. The work has subsequently become one of the pillars upon which Behan's reputation rests, and the original Littlewood production has since become recognized as evidence of the Theater Workshop's important role in Postwar British theater.

The play's structure is loose and some of the dialogue comes straight out of...

(read more from the Study Guide)

Study Pack

The The Hostage Study Pack contains about 76 pages of study material in 4 products, including:

The Hostage Study Guide

Lesson Plan

All teaching products sold separately.

The Hostage Lesson Plans contain 127 pages of teaching material, including:

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