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Molière – Reasoning With Fools - Oxford Scholarship Online
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Molière: Reasoning With Fools

Michael Hawcroft


Molière wrote, directed, and starred in comedies for public and court audiences in 17th-century France. He is perennially successful, but perennially subject to critical controversy: do his plays aim to do more than make audiences laugh? This book focuses on a group of characters in the plays, the interpretation of whose role lies at the heart of any answer to this question. For over a century critics have called them raisonneurs. They are characters who engage with some of Molière's most foolish protagonists, but they have been variously interpreted as either exponents of wisdom or as bores w ... More

Keywords: raisonneurs, wisdom, ridicule, common sense, fools, friends, dramaturgy, comedy, performance

Bibliographic Information

Print publication date: 2007 Print ISBN-13: 9780199228836
Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: September 2007 DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199228836.001.0001


Affiliations are at time of print publication.

Michael Hawcroft, author
Fellow and Tutor in French, Keble College, and Lecturer in French, University of Oxford
Author Webpage