Showing his development from dramas of societal conflict to vivid portrayals of psychological turmoil, Henrik Ibsen’s Ghosts and Other Plays is translated with an introduction by Una Ellis-Fermor in Penguin Classics.
The four plays in this volume, written late in Ibsen’s career as a dramatist, move away from his earlier preoccupation with people at odds with society to instead explore the inward struggle with their own thoughts, feelings and dreams. The Master Builder depicts a powerful man whose illusions collapse in the face of a young woman’s courageous common sense. In Rosmersholm, an idealist is forced to question his beliefs and confront terrible truths about the past, while Little Eyolf portrays a man’s self-deception, which brings both tragic repercussions for his family and new hope for their future. And in John Gabriel Borkman, a dying woman returns to reclaim the affections and loyalty of her nephew, resulting in a bitter struggle with her sister.
Una Ellis-Fermor’s lucid translation does full justice to Ibsen’s naturalistic dialogue. In her introduction, she discusses the themes of truth, freedom with responsibility, love and innocence that connect these four works, and examines each play in detail.
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About Henrik Ibsen
Henrik Ibsen was born of well-to-do parents at Skien, a small Norwegian coastal town, on March 20, 1828. In 1836 his father went bankrupt, and the family was reduced to near poverty. At the age of fifteen, he was apprenticed… More about Henrik Ibsen
Published by Penguin Classics Feb 28, 1959| 384 Pages| ISBN 9780140440539