|Plot Summary of Pygmalion|
|"Macbeth doesn't think
things through and his vaulting ambition leads to his demise. His wife is driven insane
due to her own complicity and she commits suicide.
George Bernard Shaw's “Pygmalion” is more than a play about a fair lady!
In this classic British play, based loosely upon the mythological story of Pygmalion and
Galatea, Shaw introduces us to Eliza Doolittle, a common flower girl, and Henry Higgins, a
sophisicated professor of phonetics. They meet outside a theatre in a downpour and in the
course of the badinage, Higgins boasts that he can teach her to speak like a lady and pass
her off at a royal ball as a princess. The bet is on, not without its obstacles, howver.
Ultimately, Liza is ready for the Big Dance. The play is more than just teaching someone
to speak properly. Shaw explores some heavy themes (middle class morality, language,
friendship, class distinction, to name a few).
Bill Hobbs, Resident Scholar
|"In Pygmalion, Shaw presents a classic theme of drama-the complexity inherent in human relationships.Two old gentlemen meet in the rain one night at Covent Garden. Professor Higgins is a scientist of phonetics, and Colonel Pickering is a linguist of Indian dialects.The first bets the other that he can, with his knowledge of phonetics, convince high London society that, in a matter of months, he will be able to transform the cockney speaking Covent Garden flower girl, Eliza Doolittle, into a woman as poised and well-spoken as a duchess. The next morning, the girl appears at his laboratory on Wimpole Street to ask for speech lessons, offering to pay a shilling, so that she may speak properly enough to work in a flower shop. Then Eliza's father Alfred Doolittle comes to demand the return of his daughter, though his real intention is to hit Higgins up for some money. The professor, amused by Doolittle's unusual rhetoric, gives him five pounds. On his way out, the dustman fails to recognize the now clean, pretty flower girl as his daughter.
Two trials for Eliza follow. The first occurs at Higgins' mother's home, where Eliza is introduced to the Eynsford Hills, a trio of mother, daughter, and son. The son Freddy is very attracted to her, and further taken with what he thinks is her affected "small talk" when she slips into cockney. Mrs. Higgins worries that the experiment will lead to problems once it is ended, but Higgins and Pickering are too absorbed in their game to take heed. A second trial, which takes place some months later at an ambassador's party (and which is not actually staged), is a resounding success. The wager is definitely won, but Higgins and Pickering are now bored with the project, which causes Eliza to be hurt. She throws Higgins' slippers at him in a rage because she does not know what is to become of her, thereby bewildering him. He suggests she marry somebody. She returns him the hired jewelry, and he accuses her of ingratitude.
The following morning, Higgins rushes to his mother, in a panic because Eliza has run away. On his tail is Eliza's father, now unhappily rich from the trust of a deceased millionaire. Mrs. Higgins, who has been hiding Eliza upstairs all along, chides the two of them for playing with the girl's affections. When she enters, Eliza thanks Pickering for always treating her like a lady, but threatens Higgins that she will go work with his rival phonetician, Nepommuck. The outraged Higgins cannot help but start to admire her. As Eliza leaves for her father's wedding, Higgins shouts out a few errands for her to run, assuming that she will return to him at Wimpole Street. Eliza, who has a lovelorn sweetheart in Freddy, and the wherewithal to pass as a duchess, never makes it clear whether she will or not.
shahid jawaid, Resident Scholar
|Review Analysis of Pygmalion|
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Ratings are on a 1-10 scale (Low to High)
Tone of book?
Time/era of story
Is this an adult or child's book?
- Adult or Young Adult Book
- of a different social class
How sensitive is this character?
- middling sensitive to others' feelings
- hard edged
Sense of humor
- Strong but gentle sense of humor
- Mostly serious with occasional humor
- Smarter than most other characters
- average physique
- natural phenomena
- a teen
How much of work is main antagonist actually present in:
- an above average amount
How much descriptions of surroundings?
- 5 ()
- mostly 1st
Accounts of torture and death?
- no torture/death
Amount of dialog
- mostly dialog