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Pygmalion: George B. Shaws Misconceptions


pygmalion: George B. Shaws Misconceptions

she was less degraded as a flower-seller than as a "genteel" lady trying to make an appropriate marriage-because as a flower-seller, at least, she wasn't selling her body. Unlike the myth, Shaw's play does not end in a marriage between the pair, and Liza is infuriated with Higgins's suggestion that her success is his success and that he has made her what she. From a person's accent, one can determine where the person comes from and usually what the person's socioeconomic background. Although British society is supposed to break down along class lines, Shaw makes a point of highlighting gender loyalties in this play. At the end of My Fair Lady, Higgins repents and Eliza returns. This is clearly deliberate; starting out in a conventional manner heightens the effect of Eliza's triumph.

This point was lost on those who performed the play. Admittedly, it wouldn't be the grand inquisitor much of a date movie, but my feeling is that, if performed and produced properly, it could be received very well indeed. Similarly, it's heartening to find, on a Web page designed for parents who want to use videos for educational purposes, the following "possible problem" noted for the 1938 film of Pygmalion (and for My Fair Lady The ending in which Eliza returns to Henry Higgins. Yet, Higgins's pattern of treating everyone like dirt-while just as democratic as Pickering's of treating everyone like a duke or duchess-is less satisfactory than Pickering's. In the original Pygmalion myth, the eponymous sculptor creates Galatea as a statue, which then comes to life and they live happily ever after.


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