Article Title

Generic Complexity in Ibsen's An Enemy of the People


In lieu of an abstract, the first paragraph of the essay follows:

An Enemy of the People has always been one of Ibsen's most popular plays with producers and audiences and would probably be produced even more frequently were it not for its large cast and multiple settings. Arthur Miller was moved to create an adaptation of it in 1950, and Steve McQueen, in one of his last ventures, chose it as an appropriate vehicle when he decided to try his hand at a serious drama without a chase scene. In remarkable contrast, the play has been far less popular with Ibsen critics and commentators. Few individual studies have been devoted to it, and it tends to receive anything approaching full-scope treatment only in editions that accord every included play a uniform introduction or in studies dedicated to thorough coverage of the entire Ibsen canon or to significant portions of it. Many such studies, moreover, pay it little attention, dismissing it with a few hasty general observations in order to hurry on to work that apparently engages the commentators' interest more deeply.

Comparative Drama is carried by JSTOR and Project MUSE.