The History Boys: A Play

Alan Bennett

Faber and Faber, Inc.

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“A play of depth as well as dazzle, intensely moving as well as thought-provoking and funny.” The Daily Telegraph

An unruly bunch of bright, funny sixth-form (or senior) boys in a British boys’ school are, as such boys will be, in pursuit of sex, sport, and a place at a good university, generally in that order. In all their efforts, they are helped and hindered, enlightened and bemused, by a maverick English teacher who seeks to broaden their horizons in sometimes undefined ways, and a young history teacher who questions the methods, as well as the aim, of their schooling. In The History Boys, Alan Bennett evokes the special period and place that the sixth form represents in an English boy’s life. In doing so, he raises—with gentle wit and pitch-perfect command of character—not only universal questions about the nature of history and how it is taught but also questions about the purpose of education today.


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Book Excerpts

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The History Boys: A Play
Act OneIrwin is in a wheelchair, in his forties, addressing three or four unidentified MPs.IRWIN This is the tricky one.The effect of the bill will be to abolish trial by jury in at least half the cases that currently come before the courts and will to a significant extent abolish the presumption of innocence.Our strategy should therefore be to insist that the bill does not diminish the liberty of the subject but amplifies it; that the true liberty of the subject consists in the freedom to walk the streets unmolested etc.

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Reviews

Praise for The History Boys: A Play

“Nothing could diminish the incendiary achievement of this subtle, deep-wrought and immensely funny play about the value and meaning of education . . . In short, a superb, life-enhancing play.” —The Guardian

“Brilliantly funny . . . The History Boys is moving, disquieting: one follows it with a heart brimful . . . His finest work in decades.” —Financial Times

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About the Author

Alan Bennett

Alan Bennett is a renowned playwright and essayist whose screenplay for The Madness of King George was nominated for an Academy Award. He lives in London, England.

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Alan Bennett

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Available Formats and Book Details

The History Boys: A Play
Alan Bennett

Trade Paperback

Trade Paperback
Faber & Faber
Faber and Faber, Inc.
April 2006
Trade Paperback
ISBN: 9780571224647
ISBN10: 0571224644
5 1/2 x 8 1/4 inches, 144 pages
$14.00

e-Book Agency

e-Book Agency
Faber & Faber
Faber and Faber, Inc.
April 2006
e-Book Agency
ISBN: 9781429921664
ISBN10: 1429921668
144 pages
$9.99
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Faber & Faber

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