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us: Sentimental comedies



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    • us: Comedies, Sentimental
    • us: Sentimental drama
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    • found: Work cat.: Ellis, F.H. Sentimental comedy : theory & practice, 1991.
    • found: Jenner, C. The man of family : a sentimental comedy, 1771.
    • found: Bernbaum, E. The drama of sensibility : a sketch of the history of English sentimental comedy and domestic tragedy, 1696-1780, 1915.
    • found: Wilson, E. The theater experience, c2004, via McGraw-Hill Higher Education online learning center, Nov. 14, 2012: glossary (Sentimental comedy: In eighteenth-century England, comedy that reaffirmed middle-class morality: the virtuous characters were rewarded and the wicked punished.)
    • found: Quinn, E. A dictionary of literary and thematic terms, c1999 (sentimental comedy. A type of 18th-century English comedy emphasizing the virtues, rather than the foibles, of its major characters and celebrating the triumph of good over evil. Conceived in reaction to the cynical and amoral tone of Restoration comedy, the comedy of sensibility, as sentimental comedy was known, was notably short on laughs, but rich in "warmth." In this respect it was a precursor of 19th-century melodrama and of the television sitcom of the 1950s.)
    • found: Balick, C. Oxford dictionary of literary terms, ©2004, via Answers.com, Nov. 15, 2012 (sentimental comedy, a kind of comedy that achieved some popularity with respectable middle‐class audiences in the 18th century. In contrast with the aristocratic cynicism of English Restoration comedy, it showed virtue rewarded by domestic bliss; its plots, usually involving unbelievably good middle‐class couples, emphasized pathos rather than humour. Pioneered by Richard Steele in The Funeral (1701) and more fully in The Conscious Lovers (1722), it flourished in mid‐century with the French comédie larmoyante ('tearful comedy') and in such plays as Hugh Kelly's False Delicacy (1768). The pious moralizing of this tradition, which survived into 19th‐century melodrama, was opposed in the 1770s by Sheridan and Goldsmith, who attempted a partial return to the comedy of manners.)
    • found: Britannica online, Nov. 15, 2012 (sentimental comedy, a dramatic genre of the 18th century, denoting plays in which middle-class protagonists triumphantly overcome a series of moral trials. Such comedy aimed at producing tears rather than laughter. Sentimental comedies reflected contemporary philosophical conceptions of humans as inherently good but capable of being led astray through bad example. By an appeal to his noble sentiments, a man could be reformed and set back on the path of virtue. Although the plays contained characters whose natures seemed overly virtuous, and whose trials were too easily resolved, they were nonetheless accepted by audiences as truthful representations of the human predicament.)
    • found: Merriam-Webster online, Nov. 15, 2012 (sentimental comedy: comedy that addresses itself to the spectator's love of goodness rather than to his sense of humor and emphasizes the moral aspects of its situations and the virtues of its characters)
    • found: Englisches Seminar der Christian-Albrechts-Universität zu Kiel website, Nov. 15, 2012 (Sentimental comedy. A dramatic genre of the 18th century, denoting plays in which middle-class protagonists triumphantly overcome a series of moral trials. Such comedy aimed at producing tears rather than laughter. Sentimental comedies reflected contemporary philosophical conceptions of humans as inherently good but capable of being led astray through bad example. Important authors and plays: Colley Cibber: Love's Last Shift (1696), The Careless Husband (1704); Sir Richard Steele: The Conscious Lovers (1722); Edward Moore: The Foundling (1748); William Whitehead: The School for Lovers (1762))
    • found: The drama teacher website, Nov. 15, 2012 (Sentimental comedy: In the 1800's in Britain a new form of drama emerged, known as sentimental comedy. The basic premise of all Sentimental Comedies was that man was good, but capable of being misled. So plays of this genre had characters that were noble, got into trouble, then found the road to salvation. Strangely, these comedies were more likely to bring an audience to tears than offer them laughter. Sentimental Comedies were considered by many to be realistic depictions of everyday life and this was part of their appeal. The best example of the genre is Sir Richard Steele's The Conscious Lovers (1722).)
    • found: The Cambridge history of English and American literature in 18 volumes (1907-21), via Bartleby.com, Nov. 15, 2012: Volume X, The age of Johnson. IV. The drama and the stage. 2. Sentimental comedy in England and on the Continent ("The conventional critical distinction between tragedy and comedy should not, then, be unduly pressed. Doubtless, it is unnecessary to find fault with the term "sentimental comedy," which is sanctioned by contemporary usage and actually adopted by Goldsmith in his attack upon sentimental drama. But it is important to recognise that the wave of sentiment swept over a wider field than that of English comedy, or even of English drama. It invaded the continent. Destouches, whose residence in England brought him, like Voltaire, into direct contact with English influences, admitted into several of his later comedies (1727-53) a serious undertone. Marivaux touched comedy with pathos and sentiment. Nivelle de la Chaussée, who followed Steele's dictum that "laughter's a distorted passion" more closely than did its author, developed sentimental comedy into comédie larmoyante. Voltaire, though by no means ready to permit comedy to forget her function of mirth, found "melting pity" admissible. Diderot drew inspiration from Lillo's moralised bourgeois tragedy. The very term drame suggests the obliteration of the rigid line between comedy and tragedy. ... Notwithstanding the far-reaching influence of sentimental drama, the record of its rise and progress is but part of the English dramatic history of the eighteenth century.")
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