History: E211_Everyman

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Assigned: Everyman (463-84).


1. What can be said about the play's setting? What are its characteristics, and what is its moral significance? To what extent does the playwright describe the setting as if it were an actual landscape?

2. Characterize the "journey" Everyman takes -- what sort of trip is it? Also, does the word "journay" (line 103) help the author make some further point about the trip to be undertaken? (Look up jour and journée in French.)

3. What attributes of Everyman are embodied in the allegorical characters? Which is most important, and why? A fun elaboration: test your Hollywood acumen: whom would you cast in the role of each character? Who should play "Good Deeds," "Fellowship," and so on? Why?

4. What view of human nature does this play present? How do you derive this view? Point to and discuss some specific passages.

5. What sort of attitude towards man does God take in this play? What "emotions" does he seem to exhibit? What judgments does he make?

6. This play is, of course, a moral allegory, but it has no trouble holding a modern reader's attention. Many people would probably agree that it still packs a considerable emotional punch. Try to explain how the play generates such a response.

Edition: Abrams, M. H. et al, eds. The Norton Anthology of English Literature. 8th ed. Vol. A. New York: Norton, 2006. ISBN Package 1 (Vols. ABC) 0-393-92833-0.


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