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4.2 out of 5 stars
The Misanthrope and Other Plays: A New Selection
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Showing 1-6 of 6 reviews(5 star)show all reviews
Moliere's "The Misanthrope" is the most humorous play written in any language. It centers around the character Alceste, who has a firm beleif in being brutally honest all the time. The habit of others to speak harshly behind other's backs and hypocritically praise them to their faces drives him to the brink of insanity. It irks him so much that his only wish would be to become a hermit in the mountains. If it weren't for his love of the beautiful Celimene. However, to make things more complicated, she happens to be the queen of duplicitous thought. Alceste hates himself for loving a woman who behaves in the manner that irritates him the most, but cannot bring himself to confront what troubles him. That, paired with the remarkably written exchanges between Alceste, his friend Philinte, the pompous Oronte, and the many social courtiers and French aristocracy make this the ideal story to bring you to tears with laughter. I highly recommend this book to all lovers of theater, humor, and excellent writing. It truly deserves all 5 stars.
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on August 3, 2001
Moliere deals with numerous common themes in his short five-act play. The play follows the throes of passion of the main character (Alceste), obsessed with his love for Celimene while being plagued by his need for truth, often at the unsociable expense of bluntness. His friend (Philinte) attempts to dissuade Alceste both in his love for Celimene and his brusque honesty, but fails in both. Aleceste finally ends up retiring to a hermit-esque fate after ironically forgiving Celemine for courting the favor and advances of a number of other admirers, all of whom end up enraged with her flattery and lack of direction. In a brief 52 pages, Moliere pointed debates the virtues of "niceness" and "truth," two seemingly mutually exclusive virtues, leaving the reader with a provoking but conclusionless sense of indecision.
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on July 5, 2000
As a literary scholar who has read this play in both French and English, I can verify that this is a great translation. "The Misanthrope" is Moliere's most lyrical play; the language is absolutely breathtaking. The translator has managed to preserve this quality without disturbing the story and its impact. All readers should enjoy this great play.
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on May 30, 2002
You might not think a play in verse written in the 17th century would be accessible and entertaining today, but this one's hilarious. Somehow the formal rhyming couplets make everything funnier. Get the Donald Frame translation - I've seen some others that weren't nearly as good.
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on November 11, 2001
It is my blief that everyone should read this book. I am a high school senior and find it very insightful. In addition to that, it is also very ammusing. It is an accurate commentary on society.
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on March 26, 2015
great service and goods
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