Pygmalion

Topics: Social class, Sociology, Working class Pages: 3 (756 words) Published: December 2, 2013
Today I will be commenting on an excerpt from Pygmallion, written by Bernard Shaw. This play was first presented in 1912. Pygmalion is a play that focuses on Eliza Doolittle the main character and Higgins, the teacher. The storyline basically tells how Higgins teaches Eliza how to speak a proper English. The reason behind this was because the way someone spoke during the time Shaw wrote this play allowed people to define from what social class a person came from. B/c Eliza was from a lower class and had dismal english, Higgins decided to teach her proper English through a bet he took with Pickering, and In the end of the play, Eliza ends up talking like a dutchess. The excerpt takes place when Higgins and Pickering want to first test if Eliza can perform a simple talk in Standard English with other people. That is, in Mrs. Higgin's home. The excerpt is mainly Higgins and Pickering giving excuses and exaggerating Eliza's language skills to Mrs. Higgins to prove that they are not toying with Eliza, but teaching her.

There are several stylistic features that are prominent in this extract: they are plosive, alliteration, hyperbole and smilie, however, the most important feature is the structure of the extract itself.

The structure of the excerpt in lines 18-31 is created to show how Higgins and Pickering are giving excuses to why they are teaching Eliza. By talking simultaneously, their arguments sound like excuses rather than reasons, which confuses the reader and in that matter, Mrs. Higgins since this simultaneous talking doesn't give her a chance to talk or even understand what they are saying.

On the other hand, the stylistic features accentuate what Shaw tries to convey in this comedic excerpt. We can see Plosive in line 1 with the words pretty, pair and playing shows how angry and annoyed Mrs. Higgins is with the idea that Higgins and Pickering are playing with a live doll ie. Eliza. This anger is what instigates all the excuses Higgins and...
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