Saint Joan Essay

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Goldfarb has a Ph.D. in English and has published two books on the Victorian author William Makepeace Thackeray. In the following essay, he discusses the underlying philosophy of Shaw's Saint Joan.

Saint Joan is full of surprises. The first surprise is that a nonreligious writer like Shaw (at least nonreligious in a conventional Christian sense) should even write on a topic like this: the martyrdom of a Christian saint. Indeed, when it was first announced that Shaw, the "professional iconoclast," was writing on Saint Joan, at least one critic worried that the play would not be properly reverent. And critics in France, before the French version opened, were similarly nervous about how the irreverent Irishman would treat their national heroine.

But the critics were all satisfied, at least on this point: Shaw, the mocking non-Christian, produced a completely sympathetic portrait of a Christian saint. Except in a...

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This section contains 2,076 words
(approx. 6 pages at 400 words per page)
Buy the Saint Joan Study Guide
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Saint Joan from Drama for Students. ©2005-2006 Thomson Gale, a part of the Thomson Corporation. All rights reserved.
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