Date of Defense




First Advisor

Dr. Joan Herrington

Second Advisor

James Daniels

Third Advisor

Mark Liermann


Tom Stoppard's existential perspective of life in Rosencrantz and Guildenstem Are Dead challenges the audience to disregard the objective reality that has contained and limited existence. As is common of most fatalistic, existential playwrights, he exposes the absurdity of inherited doctrine that fuels the contemporary social structure. What distinguishes Stoppard from most post-modem, fatalistic, existential, absurdist dramatists are the conventions he utilizes to access the complexity of philosophical theories through characterizations, plot elements, and language familiar to a contemporary audience. By culturally identifying with the audience, Stoppard's vision is magnified as the audience is contextually knowledgeable on the premise which he explores.

Access Setting

Honors Thesis-Campus Only