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Frau Warrens Beruf : Stück in 4 Akten
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Frau Warrens Beruf : Stück in 4 Akten

3.66 of 5 stars 3.66  ·  rating details  ·  2,362 ratings  ·  113 reviews
Middle-aged Mrs. Warren is a madam, proprietress of a string of successful brothels. Her daughter, Vivie, is a modern young woman, but not so modern that she's not shocked to discover the source of her mother's wealth. The clash of these two strong-willed, but culturally constrained Victorian women, is the spark that ignites the ironic wit of one of George Bernard Shaw's g ...more
Hardcover, 100 pages
Published January 1st 1986 by Suhrkamp (first published 1898)
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Petra X
Getting Biblical about this, should the sins of the fathers be visited upon the children unto the tenth generation? Does this apply to mothers too? Or shall we be a bit more modern and forgiving about it? The daughter in this play took the hard Biblical line and applied it to her mother too, cutting her off from all contact when she found out that her extremely privileged youth and expensive education as a lawyer had been paid for by her mother's hard work first on her back and secondly running ...more
Cecily
George Bernard Shaw was ahead of his time, and this play was banned when it was written (1893).

It exposes the hypocrisy of a society that condemns those who are not chaste, but does little to assuage the poverty that leaves some women few alternatives to survive (similar territory to JB Priestly's "The Inspector Calls", set less than 20 years later). Equally controversially, it makes a strident case for women's emancipation in general, whilst retaining Shaw's peppering of acerbic wit (Wilde wit
...more
Keely
Of the Shaw I read in my short stint as a dramaturg, this was my favorite. It bears all his hallmarks: feisty women choosing between an artist and a businessman, a basic farcical British romance plot, a hypocritical priest, lots of quipping about philosophy, and attempts to make the characters vivid and surprising.

At the latter task, he succeeds more in this book than in any of the others, truly turning the form of the light comedy on its head and committing to Ibsenesque realism. He still captu
...more
Bruce
Any play by George Bernard Shaw deserves a careful reading of his extended introduction, his introductions always clarifying his intent and motivation in writing the particular play he is presenting. This present introduction is no exception, and without a knowledge of his perceptions and goals the reader will find the play much less satisfying.

Mrs. Warren is a brothel keeper, the part-owner of a string of brothels across Europe from which she derives the income that has enabled her daughter Viv
...more
Varsha
Yet again a powerful play by Shaw wherein he makes an attempt to contradict the society’s norms and people’s hypocrisy towards it .

In ‘Mrs. Warren’s Profession’ Shaw shows how a mother’s profession turns a daughter’s life upside down.

Vivie (the daughter) is a highly educated woman, who wants to lead her life independently according to her own terms. She strongly believes in- simple living and high thinking, where as her mother Mrs Warren wants Vivie to flaunt her beauty and get herself a husba
...more
Yngvild
Rereading Mrs Warren’s Profession after several years, the surprise was how little we would need to change it to play it in modern dress. A daughter, having consumed an expensive education, discovers that her natural mother is a vulgarian working on the fringes of society, and decides to ostracise her from then on. In variation, it is the same theme as Charles Dickens’ Great Expectations, which did the same thing thirty years earlier with a son and his ex-criminal benefactor. We could repeat the ...more
Deepa
Typical Shaw! Amazing in its incisive insight into the bourgeoisie's hypocritical pretensions to moral goodness. Vivie Warren is a university educated young woman. She is unaware of the fact that her mother Mrs. Warren's profession was prostitution and that she is now the owner of several successfully running brothel houses. When she realizes the "shocking" truth, she boldly disowns her mother and her wealth. She wants to lead the life of an honest hardworking woman. What she fails to see is tha ...more
Manny
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Monica
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Francesca
I was surprised by how ahead of its time this play was. This is a play about a woman living in the Victorian age who every expects her to be a typical Victorian Woman by wanting to be married and live off of her husband money. However, this is not how the Vivie, the protagonist, wants to live. She is a fresh from college, and sees life in a logical way not a romantic art way. She wants to live independently off of her own money she has worked hard for, only no one understands this. She is also t ...more
Miguel
Mrs. Warren's Profession is an engaging play that questions the conventional morality of the Victorian period with a question that still persists today, namely the moral status of participation in the practice of prostitution whether it is as a prostitute or brothel owner.

The play is particularly fantastic due to the vividness of the characters and their personalities and, of course, the subject matter it explores. Vivie is immediately lovable and interesting to both the reader and the character
...more
Samantha
I read this play for the Modern British Drama class im taking at the univeesity I attend. I found this one to be pretty interesting and I'm looking forward to reading more if Shaw's work.
Sherry
When George Bernard's play Mrs. Warren's Profession was first performed in London, there was great protest. Nice people should not see plays about the sexual slavery of young women. Even though the practice was rampant in London at the time. Shaw writes an eloquent play exploring the emotional effects of this horrible practice from all sides. I re-read again in 2005. I directed it in 2006.
Audrey
One of the things that stuck out to me in this was the way that Shaw was willing to examine the complexities of difficult social issues. This play discusses the fact that there is often a reason for why people fall into lives of prostitution, crime, or depravity—and often we, as a greedy, consumerist society, are to blame. Vivie understood why her mother went into prostitution. She accepts that her mother doesn’t even know who Vivie’s father is. She even admitted that she probably would have don ...more
Paul Dinger
It is a funny play about a madam of a house of prostitution that somehow manages not to use that word. I found this play to be highly entertaining, a view of a wierd family dynamic and how it comes apart. Shaw is rarely staged in the U. S. and this is a shame. I want to discover more by him.
Adam Floridia
Entertaining social commentary (albeit now dated) in the form a play about the causes of prostitution. Shaw's experiments with language and paradoxically (I say this because of the subject matter) feminist views merit significant thought.
Wendy E.
I'm glad to have finally read this one. Very interesting stuff. I'd like to pair this with Ibsen's Doll's House and teach them.
Kritarth Jha
Should Prostitution be legalised? What about the concept of an open marriage? Is marriage just socially acceptable prostitution?Is the innocent looking good guy a sex machine?.
Such Questions and more flood your head as you finish up this novel. Meet Mrs. Warren, a prostitute turned brothel owner , on her way to meet her only daughter, now a well educated, self sufficient young lady. Watch two very strong female characters,each who can hold their own, have their relationship strained in a world b
...more
Lesliemae
Positions of privilege and power in three characters:

"Knowledge is power, she said, and I never sell power." Rev. Samuel Gardener

"Why shouldn't I invest my money that way? I take my interest on the capital like other people. I hope you don't think I've dirtied my own hands with the work? You wouldn't refuse the acquaintance of my mothers cousin the duke of Belgravia because some of the rents he earns are got in queer ways. You wouldn't cut the Archbishop of Canterbury out because the ecclesiasti
...more
Polly Watson
MRS. WARREN'S PROFESSION by George Bernard Shaw is a new one for me. The online class I'm taking this fall hasn't been the most productive idea that I've ever had (we're down to two of us left in the class and the other person isn't posting to the discussion board until the last minute for each lesson), but yet the class is, at least, giving me the opportunity to read a few pieces of British Literature that I've never read. Shaw's play is one example of that. The play as a whole does not have mu ...more
Angelo Giardini
Nas peças de Bernard Shaw que ja li(Pigmalião, César e Cleópatra, O Discípulo do Diabo e O Homem e as Armas), há sempre um (ou vários) momento em que os personagens resolvem jogar a hipocrisia fora e falar abertamente do que está acontecendo. É como um grande exercício de sinceridade e honestidade: a verdade nua e crua jogada na cara.

Mas, de todas, esta peça bate todos os recordes de rasgar o véu da hipocrisia nas relações sociais. Toda a trama do texto se desenvolve em torno da vinda à luz da v
...more
Czarny Pies
Oct 03, 2014 Czarny Pies rated it 3 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Anyone living within a 2 hour drive from the Shaw Festival at Niagara-on-the-Lake
Recommended to Czarny by: Several trusted advisers correctly tried to talk me out of reading it.
Shelves: english-lit
This play, which is about a young person belonging to the first cohort of emancipated women in the British isles who makes an intelligence and principled decision, is tedious beyond belief when read. However, when staged it springs to life. The audience members hang on every word and then discuss the play in spirited terms when they depart after the final curtain for drinks or coffee.

Do not read this book except to prepare yourself for a performance.
Boni
I believe that this play is very controversial in its days, in 1893. It was banned in England for eight years. This is loosely adapted from a Guy de Maupassant novel, and it is about a daughter who must come into grip with the secret of her mother: her occupation and the name of her father. Her mother, Mrs. Warren, is not married. She just changed her name to appear to society that she is married.
Loren Harway
Nov 17, 2007 Loren Harway rated it 2 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Bernard Shaw
Not bad. I'm beginning to understand what made this such an important play in its day; what with all the controversy surrounding 'New Women'.
Shaw keeps it all alive by dragging the plot past the second act where traditional 'Fallen Women' plays would end (The aged prostitute embracing religion and redemption). This allows him to send his political message and piss off a bunch of critics at the same time. Vivie chooses to systematically reject everyone in her past life to bury herself in work; t
...more
Maxwell Heath
This was a fairly enjoyable play. There were some nice bits of humor alongside the more dramatic scenes. The characters are generally interesting. Mrs. Warren is fairly sympathetic but has some villainous qualities as well, while her daughter generally felt like a much better female character than a lot of the other ones I've seen in Victorian literature. There was a fair amount of playing with gender roles, which was nice, and I liked seeing some stuff that reminded me of the Ibsen I've read. T ...more
David
I like Vivie Warren. The play now might feel a bit familiar with its "strong young woman" trope, but there's aspects of it that feel really fresh. Heck, reading this in proximity to a reading of Playing the Whore brought up all sorts of interesting resonances, both moral (or maybe that should be " 'moral' ") and economic.
Nicholas
A fascinating play commenting on the role of prostitution in late Victorian society. Shaw's participation in language reform can be grating on modern readers, but the text provides both a defense and sly condemnation of prostitution.
Rachel C.
I saw this play on Friday with Brigid and Amy. We all left the theatre curious to see how the staging compared to the script. As it's in the public domain, I was able to download a free copy right onto my new toy, Graphite Kindle 3rd Gen, a.k.a. Gadget.

Mrs. Warren's profession is prostitution. The play was written in 1893, and is quite stunningly progressive and feminist for its time. It's a very challenging play where it seems like everyone is right and everyone is wrong at the same time. None
...more
Taffy
I really enjoy Shaw's plays. The dialogue is so snappy, and the description evocative. There's an interesting Victorian look at prostitution in this play, though they talk around it of course. Overall a good read.
Fabian
We get a more vivid picture of Shaw's style of social commentary--again, there are no true protagonists and all characters are to blame (since they all belong in a certain spot in this aformentioned society). The men circle Mrs. Warren's daughter like sharks--they are crazy post-Victorians who treat the "elephant in the room" (in this case, prostitution) as a mere triviality. It is not as witty as say, O. Wilde, but it exposes great truths in hyper-articulate strings of dialogue. I really enjoy ...more
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George Bernard Shaw was an Irish playwright, socialist, and a co-founder of the London School of Economics. Although his first profitable writing was music and literary criticism, in which capacity he wrote many highly articulate pieces of journalism, his main talent was for drama. Over the course of his life he wrote more than 60 plays. Nearly all his plays address prevailing social problems, but ...more
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“People are always blaming their circumstances for what they are. I don't believe in circumstances. The people who get on in this world are the people who get up and look for the circumstances they want, and if they can't find them, make them.” 674 likes
“All censorships exist to prevent anyone from challenging current conceptions and existing institutions. All progress is initiated by challenging current conceptions, and executed by supplanting existing institutions. Consequently, the first condition of progress is the removal of censorship.” 124 likes
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