Richard Brinsley Sheridan Writing Styles in School for Scandal

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A major division in a drama. In Greek plays the sections of the drama signified by the appearance of the chorus were usually divided into five acts. This is the formula for most serious drama from the Greeks to the Romans and to Elizabethan playwrights like William Shakespeare. The five acts denote the structure of dramatic action. They are exposition, complication, climax, falling action, and catastrophe. The five act structure was followed until the nineteenth century when Henrik Ibsen (A Doll's House) revolutionized dramatic structure by combining elements into fewer acts.

School for Scandal is a five act play. The exposition occurs in the first act when the audience learns of Lady Sneerwell and Joseph's plan to break up the romance between Charles and Maria; the audience also meets the gossips. By the end of Act U, the complication, the audience has met Sir Oliver and knows that...

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This section contains 937 words
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School for Scandal from Drama for Students. ©2005-2006 Thomson Gale, a part of the Thomson Corporation. All rights reserved.