George Bernard Shaw: Critic, Writer, And Activist

717 words - 3 pages

In addition to being a political activist, a literary and musical critic, and a novelist, George Bernard Shaw was a playwright and a remarkable one at that; his extraordinary commentary on such facets of life as marriage, education, government, religion, and social status sets him apart from other playwrights of his time.
The time of George Bernard Shaw’s education played a small, however important role in his career. The effect of his educational career as a student often moved into his literature. During his childhood and teenage years, he switched schools many times. He held a lifelong grudge towards teachers and schools in general after this. In a letter to a colleague Shaw said: “Schools and schoolmasters, as we have them today, are not popular as places of education and teachers, but rather prisons and turnkeys in which children are kept to prevent them disturbing and chaperoning their parents” (Letter, August 7, 1919, to Thomas Demetrius O'Bolger). This aversion to the education system, both public and private is apparent in most of Shaw’s work.
Shaw’s life after school is not well recorded, however what is known is that his mother left to London with his sisters, leaving Shaw with his father. He became a clerk for several years. Years later, in 1876, Shaw moved to his mother’s. This is where he first began writing novels and writing a musical criticism column for a newspaper. His mother had a large influence on his writing. However, his attempts at writing fiction at the time were well ignored and he eventually gave up.
During the time after his time writing fiction for the first time, Shaw became many things that influenced the way he would write forever. He became a Socialist, a vegetarian, a prominent public speaker, a skilled debater, and eventually, a playwright. His switch to Socialism led to him being a force behind the newly formed “Fabian Society”, a socialist group meaning to change society via means of changing political and intellectual life. Shaw became involved in every aspect of the Society and edited the Fabian Essays in Socialism.
Shaw’s work in journalism got him noticed by drama...

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