Three Dublin Plays The Shadow of a Gunman, Juno and the Paycock, & The Plough and the Stars

Sean O'Casey; Introduction by Christopher Murray

Farrar, Straus and Giroux



Trade Paperback

272 Pages


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Three early plays by Sean O'Casey—arguably his three greatest—demonstrate O'Casey's ability to convey the reality of life and the depth of human emotion, specifically in Dublin before and during the Irish civil war of 1922-23, but, truly, throughout the known universe. In mirroring the lives of the Dublin poor, from the tenement dwellers in The Shadow of a Gunman and Juno and the Paycock to the bricklayer, street vendor, and charwoman in The Plough and the Stars, Sean O'Casey conveys with urgency and eloquence the tiny details that create a total character as well as the terrors, large and small, that the constant threat of political violence inevitably brings.


Praise for Three Dublin Plays

"What's astonishing about these dramas, apart from the sheer richness and generosity of their humanity, is their ability, in Shakespeare's great phrase, 'to move wild laughter in the throat of death.'"—The Daily Telegraph

"From the perspective of the 1990s O'Casey stands out as Ireland's greatest playwright of the century. He it was who most passionately, most powerfully and most memorably dramatized the traumatic birth of the nation. He it was who gave to the twentieth-century theatre a greater range of vivid and original characters, male and female, than any other Irish playwright."—Christopher Murray, from Twentieth-Century Irish Drama

"The history of O'Casey's ongoing popularity in Ireland, the adequacy of his tragi-comedy to the recent violent politics in the North and the recent post-nationalist bewilderments in the Republic, the continuities between his work and the work of many of the new urban novelists, dramatists, and filmmakers—all this makes him as much if not more of an Irish shake-scene at the end of the century as when he wandered in off the street in the beginning."—Seamus Heaney

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  • Sean O'Casey; Introduction by Christopher Murray

  • Sean O'Casey was born on March 30, 1880 in Dublin, Ireland. Other than the Dublin Trilogy, his many works include The Star Turned Red, The Silver Tassie, and Purple Dust. He died on September 18, 1964.