Official Blog of Author MICHAEL THOMAS BARRY.
A blog which discusses varied topics that are related to the authors many books. Michael is a columnist for CrimeMagazine.com and a reviewer for the New York Journal of Books.
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Friday, July 5, 2013
George Bernard Shaw quits job and begins to write - 1880
On July 5, 1880, future playwright George Bernard Shaw quits
his job at the Edison Telephone Company in order to write. Shaw was born in
Dublin, Ireland, and left school at the age of 14 to work in a land agent's
office. In 1876, he quit and moved to London, where his mother, a music
teacher, had settled. He worked various jobs while trying to write plays. He
began publishing book reviews and art and music criticism in 1885. Meanwhile,
he became a committed reformer and an active force in the newly established
Fabian Society, a group of middle-class socialists.
His first play, Widowers' House, was produced in
1892. His second play, Mrs. Warren's Profession, was banned in Britain
because of its frank dealing with prostitution. In 1905, when the play was
performed in the U.S., police shut it down after one performance and jailed the
actors and producers. The courts soon ruled that the show could re-open.
Although some private productions were held, the show wasn't legally performed
in Britain until 1926. In 1895, Shaw became the theater critic for the Saturday
Review, and his reviews during the next several years helped shape the
development of drama. In 1898, he published Plays Pleasant and Unpleasant,
which contained Arms and the Man, The Man of Destiny, and other dramas.
In 1904, Man and Superman was produced. In his works, Shaw supported
socialism and decried the abuses of capitalism, the degradation of women, and
the evil effects of poverty, violence, and war. His writing was filled with
humor, wit, and sparkle, as well as reformist messages, and his play Pygmalion,
produced in 1912, later became the hit musical and movie My Fair Lady. In
1925, Shaw won the Nobel Prize for literature and used the substantial prize
money to start an Anglo-Swedish literary society. He lived simply, abstained
from alcohol, caffeine, and meat, declined most honors and awards, and
continued writing into his 90s. He produced more than 40 plays before his death
Michael Thomas Barry
is the author of Literary Legends of the British Isles. The book can be
purchased from Amazon through the following links: