(855) 4-ESSAYS

Type a new keyword(s) and press Enter to search

Comedy in The History Boys

            There are many settings used to drive the comedy in 'The History Boys' and help nurture it. The settings that have a direct impact are the time the play was performed, the date the play was set, the fact the play is set in a school and the geographical setting. The fact the play is set in a school context is an effective vehicle for comedy because it is supposed to be a place of intellect and seriousness so therefore if anything of the opposite happens or irrational it is bound to make some humour. The time the play was set and the first time it was performed is effective because it shows that the modern audience already have knowledge over what has happened or what is going to happen before the characters and can show dramatic irony.
             In the 1980's which is when the play was set education was in a state of change and traditional values of order and discipline were being challenged by more progressive methods. In the play education is seen as a competition which can be scored/ranked not only in league tables for universities but also in teaching between Hector and Irwin because Irwin is more of the new teacher that Thatcher wanted whereas Hector is the type of teacher that was being threatened by Thatcherism. This is perhaps mostly shown in the scene where Irwin is handing back the boys essays. 'Irwin: I didn't say it was wrong. I said it was dull. Its sheer competence was staggering. Interest nil. Oddity nil. Singularity nowhere.' The way Irwin says 'Interest nil. Oddity nil. Singularity nowhere.' Suggests that he only cares about getting the points and livening up the boy's essays instead of getting in all the facts and getting everything right shows how different he is to Hector and his methods of teaching. Whereas in Hectors Lessons the boys are free to learn in their own way and most of his lessons start of bizarrely. .
             The fact the boys are so eager to get into Oxbridge is a sort of dramatic irony because the play was first performed in 2004 and the viewer's know how to get into Oxbridge whereas the boys just think they will get in.

Essays Related to Comedy in The History Boys

Got a writing question? Ask our professional writer!
Submit My Question