The Theater: Old Play in Manhattan, Nov. 4, 1946

The Playboy of the Western World (by John Millington Synge; produced by Theatre Inc.) remains, after 40 years, one of the fine things in the modern theater. What seems strange is that 40 years ago it should have been so furiously attacked. Yet the half-whimsical satire of Synge's folk comedy enraged Dublin's patriots as a stab at Ireland, and incensed her puritans by mentioning a woman's "shift."*A few years later, in Manhattan, explosive Irish Americans started a theater riot that ex-President Teddy Roosevelt, seated in a box, aborted by speaking up for the play.

Synge was, to be sure, having fun in...

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