Assignment: Subject: Drama
Due Date: March 8
Choose ONE of the following options (Option 1, Option 2, or Option 3). Your essay should be typed,
double-spaced, and from 500 to 600 words long using 12 point font (Times or Times New Roman).
Develop a thesis concerning Option 1, 2, or 3 and support your thesis with specific reasons, examples, and
explanations. If you use another source of information besides the material we have read in class, you must
indicate the name and source of the information. You must use quotation marks when quoting another
source of information, but I discourage you from using too much quoted information. This essay should
mostly reflect your ideas and your writing. As with essays #1 and #2, put two documents in our shared
dropbox, labeled accurately: one being the draft and one being the revision. For example:
and [your name_Essay3_revision]
Make sure both documents, draft and revision, have your name and Section # in the header of the text.
I encourage you to use the Writing Center tutors or to work with another student doing peer reviews so that
you can have another person read your draft before you revise it.
Option 1: Irony in Pygmalion, OR Trifles OR Sure Thing
Irony may occur or be expressed in several ways. Verbal irony refers to what someone says: in this case
someone says one thing but means or intends to suggest the opposite. For example, when it is cold and
miserable outside, someone says “What a nice day.” Situational irony refers to actions or events that have
a result or outcome that is opposite of what was intended or expected. For example, a young man brings
bright red roses to a girl on the very day that her beloved dog has just died. Dramatic irony refers to the
difference between what an audience (or reader) knows and what a character in the fiction (drama, novel,
short story, or poem) knows. In other words, the audience knows a character is doing the wrong thing
because the audience knows more about the situation than what the character knows.
For this essay, write an essay in which you discuss irony in one of the plays we have read. Make sure you
support your assertions about what is ironic with specific references to the text, either to dialogue or stage
Option 2: Character Analysis in Pygmalion and “The Waltz” and “Hills Like White Elephants”
How are the women in these three stories—Eliza in Pygmalion, the woman in “The Waltz,” and
Jig in “Hills”—alike? How are they different? In particular, you should describe how they relate to the men
in these stories.
Option 3: Theme in Pygmalion
George Bernard Shaw takes the myth of Pygmalion and Galatea and gives it a modern context. In
the myth, Pygmalion, the sculptor, creates a work or art—his stone sculpture of Galatea—so beautiful that
he prays that she become a real woman that he can marry. In Shaw’s Pygmalion, Shaw gives us Professor
Higgins, who on a bet claims he can turn Eliza from a common, uneducated flower girl into a woman who
could pass as a duchess, merely by teaching her proper speech and manners. Has Higgens succeeded? Is
Eliza the same person beneath her now proper speech and manners, or has she been transformed into a new
person altogether? In discussing this issue, you should discuss issues of social mobility and social
determinism. You should also draw parallels with stories we have read that also feature issues of social
class, such as “Sunday in the Park, “On the Road,” “Gaston,” or “Romero’s Shirt.”