Top Girls Essay

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In the following essay on Caryl Churchill's Top Girls, author Joseph Marohl discusses how Churchill creates her characters and dramas with "deliberate confusion . . . and playfulness" to examine difficult social and emotional concepts of gender and history, effectively de-centering gender as the primary dramatic focal point.

For a decade now, deliberate confusion of dramatic roles and playfulness about otherwise serious concepts of gender and history have distinguished Caryl Churchill's plays from the work of mainstream playwrights in Great Britain and the United States. For instance, six performers in Light Shining in Buckinghamshire play twenty-four different dramatis personae with individual role assignments which vary from scene to scene and are unrelated to the performers' actual sexes. In the finale of Vinegar Tom, her "sequel" to Light Shining, two female performers portray two seventeenth-century theologians in the top hat and tails of music hall entertainers, singing with great irony the song...

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This section contains 6,272 words
(approx. 16 pages at 400 words per page)
Buy the Top Girls Study Guide
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Top Girls from Drama for Students. ©2005-2006 Thomson Gale, a part of the Thomson Corporation. All rights reserved.