Unique among his works, Oscar Wilde’s play Salomé (1893) was written originally in French. Joseph Donohue’s new translation of the horrific New Testament story has recast Wilde’s shockingly radical drama in the natural idiomatic language of our own day. Presenting a colloquial and spare American... show more
Unique among his works, Oscar Wilde’s play Salomé (1893) was written originally in French. Joseph Donohue’s new translation of the horrific New Testament story has recast Wilde’s shockingly radical drama in the natural idiomatic language of our own day. Presenting a colloquial and spare American English version of Wilde’s consciously stylized French, Donohue’s approach gives full value to the Irish author’s dark ruminations on evil and perversity in a world on the brink of a new, unsettling Christian dispensation.The play was first translated into English in 1894 by Wilde’s young friend Lord Alfred Douglas, but Wilde was far from pleased with the outcome. And yet Douglas’s stilted, inaccurate version has somehow retained a long-standing place on the stage and in the study. Donohue’s lucid vernacular transformation of Douglas’s safe, thee-and-thou faux-biblical language has the quality of a startling modern-dress remounting of an overly familiar classic play. This new Salomé is calculated to bring both readers and playgoers into close, disturbing confrontation with one of the most erotic and bloodiest sequences of testamentary lore.Brilliantly complementing Donohue’s unprecedented approach is a set of engravings by a master illustrator of our time. Barry Moser is an artist who speaks the blunt yet fluent language of present-day communication through the penetrating gestural vocabulary of the graphic arts. The resulting combination of words and images directly engages with Wilde’s characters and their story, setting a bold new standard for the melding of literary and pictorial excellence. At the same time, it leads readers and audiences alike to rediscover perennially significant themes—of love, death, power, and individuality.A signed and numbered limited edition is available for $100.00.
Publish date: November 14th 2011
Publisher: University of Virginia Press
Pages no: 108
Edition language: English
, European Literature
, British Literature
, Historical Fiction
, Irish Literature
, 19th Century
, English Literature
Salome by Oscar Wilde was a very strange play. The usual witty, humorous dialogs which I expected in his play was totally absent. This actually turned out to be a very depressing book. I could not relate to the protagonist Salome one bit I felt she was an eccentric character. First of all Salome des...
Thoughts on Wilde's 'Salome' and other Salomé-related art can be found in my essay: < http://www.eveningoflight.nl/subspecie/2012/04/16/fatale-the-history-of-salome/ >.
My teacher picked this for me, because he thought the role of Salome was fitting for my personality. It might be, 'cause I enjoyed her as a character... if you look away from the fact that she actually murdered the man she loved.
As one can easily guess, Wilde gives his own interpretation of the biblical story of Salome / John the Baptist. Even more than the play itself (actually a lot more) I like love Aubrey Beardsley's illustrations. In fact I love Aubrey Beardsley. Period.Check out the rest of the illustrations here .