Round Dance and Other Plays

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  • Format: Paperback
  • Copyright: 1/15/2009
  • Publisher: Oxford University Press

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The playwright Arthur Schnitzler is best known as the chronicler of fin de si'ecle Viennese decadence. Here is a unique collection of seven of Schnitzler's best-known plays in new English translations that are fluent and expressive and ideal for reading, study, or performance. Round Dance, written in the late 1890s, exposes sexual life in Vienna with such witty frankness that it could not be staged until after the First World War, when it provoked a riot in the theater and a prosecution for indecency. The collection also includes Flirtations, The Green Cockatoo, The Last Masks, Countess Mizzi, and The Vast Domain. These other plays explore love, sexuality, and death in various guises, always with a sharp, non-judgemental awareness of the complexity and mystery of the psyche. Acquainted with Freud and his circle, Schnitzler probes beneath the surface of his characters to uncover emotions they barely understand. Also included is the tragicomedy Professor Bernhardi, in which Schnitzler addresses the growing anti-Semitism of the period. The introduction by Ritchie Robertson explores the plays in relation to Schnitzler's life, to the culture of turn-of-the-century Vienna, and to Mordernism in general.

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