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PDF EBook by Molière

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Mocking the Heavens

As I read this I was reminded most often of the god- PDFmen of India: of their scandals, of their dedicated followers who are so willingly duped, and of the politicians who pretend to be devoted for their own purposes. Tartuffe eller Den Skinnhellige PDF EBook

I can only imagine what parallel suggestion would have been easily engendered in the French minds as they sat through this devastating play.

It is no surprise that there was such outage. It is no surprise that it was banned for so long. The device Moliè download; re employs is too transparent, but entirely innocent. Without once giving his game away in the text, he makes his intent entirely transparent — ridicule the falsely pious. Unfortunately, his audience did not take too well to being ridiculed!

Molière’s Plea to the Audience

"...If the task of comedy is to correct the vices of mankind, I do not understand why some of those vices should be exempt. In the State, the vice of hypocrisy is far more dangerous than all the others; and we have seen that the theater is a strong force for its correction. The most beautiful phrases of a serious sermon are frequently less powerful than satire, and nothing alerts men more effectively than the display of their vices. Displaying vice to the mockery of men deals it a great blow. Men put up with admonition but are loath to be mocked. One might be will- ing to be wicked; one cannot bear to appear foolish.

People attack me for putting pious language in the mouth of an impostor. Well! How could I fail to do this if I wanted to present accurately the character of a hypocrite? It was enough, it seemed to me, to reveal the criminal motives that made him say these things and to have omitted those holy words that it would have been horrible to hear him misuse. But, say they, at the beginning of the fourth act he uses a pernicious and casuistic argument. Yet has not everyone heard such casuistry being used? Does my comedy present anything new? Who could believe that such widely detested behavior would influence anyone; that I make it more dangerous by presenting it on the stage, that it would receive some validity because it is presented by a scoundrel? That does not seem possible, and the comedy of Tartuffe should be approved or all comedies banned."


Mock The Heavens… but not us!

Eight days after this play was banned, actors presented to the court a play called “Scaramouche the Hermit,” and the king, leaving the performance, said to the prince: : “I would like to know why those who were so scandalized by Molière’s comedy say nothing about Scaramouche.”

To which the prince replied:

“The reason is that the comedy of Scaramouche mocks Heaven and religion, which those gentlemen do not care about, but Molière’s play mocks those gentlemen themselves, and they cannot endure that.”
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