|Plot Summary of The Visit|
|"THE VISIT has been first published in 1956.
Guellen is a small German town, once wealthy, which seems to be abandoned now by the industrial world. The factories have closed and the town is potentially bankrupted. So when Claire Zachanassian, a hometown girl who's become a billionaire, comes back and announces that she intends to give 50 million to the town administration and 50 million to be distributed to the citizens of Guellen, the people begin to dream of a rebirth of the town. But there is one condition set down by the old lady : that her old lover Ill, who betrayed her 50 years before by refusing to acknowledge their child, has to be condemned to death and executed by the people of Guellen. At first shocked by this barbarian demand, the citizens, little by little, will forget their sense of justice."
Daniel Staebler, Resident Scholar
|"From what I have read this is a very misunderstood play. It concerns the return to a small German town of an old , wealthy woman who "goosesteps" elaborately around the stage. She demands the town turn over a citizen who offended her years earlier in exchange for great wealth being showered upon the town.
I understand this to be an illusion to the implicit deal the German public made: support Hitler and his ant-semitism in exchange for the prosperity promised by a greater Germany."
Ray Gambel, Resident Scholar
|"The Swiss city of Guellen is bankrupt although its surroundings are very wealthy. In this situation comes the old Lady Claire Zachanassian, who lived there as a child and is a billinaire now. She already had nine husbands and eight divorces and managed to get every husbands money. Now she offers Guellen a huge amount of money to help the people. But there is a condition: Ill, her former lover, who betrayed her must be killed. At first, the people of Guellen object, but on further reflection they are not so sure anymore. While Ill suffers from utmost fear, we get to know that Claire set everything up, that she is to blame for Guellens' poverty."
Anne, Resident Scholar
|"The town of Guellen is in dire need of money, and the townspeople believe that they'll soon be getting some. Claire Zachanassian, a multimillionaire who used to live there about 45 years ago, is coming back, and everyone's sure they can convince her to give them money, since they've heard a great deal about the charitable things she's done. Ill, a shopkeeper in the town, was a friend and lover of hers when they were younger, and he's intent on using this relationship to the town's benefit. Claire does promise the town and everyone in it a lot of money, but only under the condition that someone in the town must kill Ill."
Melissa Cookson, Resident Scholar
|Review Analysis of The Visit|
Our unique search engine provides a wealth of detail about books by breaking them down into many different literary elements, all of which are searchable (click here).
Ratings are on a 1-10 scale (Low to High)
Tone of book?
Time/era of story
Life of a profession:
- "the rich"
Inside culture (main char)
- story of "the rich"
Is this an adult or child's book?
- Adult or Young Adult Book
Outside culture (society)
How sensitive is this character?
- middling sensitive to others' feelings
- Average intelligence
- average physique
How sensitive is this character?
- hard edged
Sense of humor
- Cynical sense of humor
- Very much smarter than other characters
- missing body parts/abilities
How much descriptions of surroundings?
- 2 ()
- mostly 3rd
- rotating 1st
Accounts of torture and death?
- generic/vague references to death/punishment
Is this a play?
Amount of dialog
- mostly dialog
Click here for more information about this book
Friedrich Durrenmatt Resident Scholar Profiles|
Note: the views expressed here are only those of the reviewer(s).
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