Little Women

First published in 1869, Little Women is the story of four sisters growing up against the background of the American Civil War. Alcott wrote the book at the urging of the publisher, Thomas Niles, who was seeking a story about girls that would have popular appeal. Although it was commenced essentially as a children’s book,…

A Woman of No Importance

A Woman of No Importance takes place in a 24-hour period during a house party hosted by Lady Hunstanton at her country estate. The upper echelons of English society mix, mingle and flirt, including Lady Caroline Pontefract (who is on her fourth husband), the witty and ironic Mrs. Allonby and the dandyish Lord Illingworth. Wilde…

The Importance of Being Earnest

The Importance of Being Earnest is Wilde’s most famous and oft-produced play. First performed in 1895, and subtitled “A Trivial Comedy for Serious People”, it shows Wilde at his satirical and scathingly witty best. It follows the misadventures of Algy and Jack as they attempt to woo and wed Cecily and Gwendolen under the assumed…

Lady Windermere’s Fan

Passion and intrigue among the upper classes form the basis of Lady Windermere’s Fan, Oscar Wilde’s first successful play, which displays his trademark wit and wisdom. Beautiful and innocent Lady Windermere finds out that her husband has been keeping company with the scandalous and mysterious Mrs. Erlynne. Her discovery unleashes a host of tensions at…