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The Plight Of The Artist in Modern Drama, A Study on Bernard Shaw's Pygmalion - Essay Example

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Bernard Shaw examines the causes, process and consequences of changing identities in Pygmalion within the said setting. Several scholars studied the implications of social class and culture to identity…
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The Plight Of The Artist in Modern Drama, A Study on Bernard Shaws Pygmalion
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"The Plight Of The Artist in Modern Drama, A Study on Bernard Shaw's Pygmalion"

Download file to see previous pages Several times in the drama, Mrs. Pearce and Mrs. Higgins, Henry Higgin’s mother, asked Henry Higgins what will become of Eliza after her transformation (Shaw). Higgins does not find these concerns as more important than his goal of transforming Eliza into a Duchess in manners and speech (Shaw Act 2). His attitude shows lack of apathy for the plight of a woman whose life he is changing (Nienhuis 3). He does not have the breeding of a human being, only the intellect of an academic expert. Olukayode A. Afolabi would have described Higgins as lacking in emotional intelligence because he cannot monitor his feelings and the feelings of others to respond positively (126). Higgins has the plight of person versus social codes of conduct.
A number of scholars discuss the plight of the heroine. Nienhuis also discusses Eliza’s plight in the story. He explains that Eliza’s plight is that, because she has been transformed from a lower-class woman to an upper-class one, she believes she cannot fit any. Upper-class life is too sophisticated for her, while lower-class living is no longer sufficient (Nienhuis 3), which shows Eliza’s common sense as a humane person (Mellor 345). This matches Social Identity Theory, where people interact with other groups through their social identity more than their individual identity (Sindic and Reicher 114). Eliza sees herself more as part of another class that is in-between two worlds. Her plight is also with her love life and the direction she wants after being transformed. At the end of the play, Eliza gets angry at Higgins for being so insensitive, and largely because of how he mistreats her as a “social inferior” (Nienhuis 3). It shows the person-versus-person conflict because of different perceptions on how people should be treated. Neelam and Rao assert that Eliza has the life force of an independent woman that allowed her to surpass the conflicts in ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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