Annotated Bibliography of Criticism


Bogucki, Michael. “Brutal Phantoms: Modernism, Anti-theatricality, and Irish Drama.”

Diss. Thesis / Dissertation ETD, 2010. Print.

“Brutal Phantoms” examines the works of early dramas that went against the grain of the Victorian commercial theatre. It examines George Moore’s, The Strike at Arlingford, praising Moore’s innovative character, the ability to center on the social theatre, and the attention given to “corrupt performance practices of British touring companies” (3). Nevertheless, Bogucki does not deem Moore to be a fully accomplished playwright. He thinks Moore does a poor job of developing strong characters that will leave imprints of realism on the audience. John Reid, for example, is “a weak man in a position too strong for him … and [the] inability to express himself” (38). Bogucki also criticizes Moore’s inability to follow through on metaphors, and “[a] weak production” [that] causes the audience not to view the characters in a purposeful light. Bogucki also comments on the luxurious decor at the beginning of the play that wanes to the point of no significance at the end. The author’s argument is that The Strike at Arlingford is an ingenious, creative, true-to-life play, but Moore struggles with production and implicit comparisons.

—Sandra Brown


Robinson, Hilary. Review of Anthony Farrow, George Moore. The Yearbook of English Studies 12 (1982): 334–336. Web.

Hilary Robinson alludes to Anthony Farrow’s scholarly book, which examines George Moore’s works. Farrow proposes that Moore centers around the conflict of life, marriage, and art. Robinson refers to three works to support Farrow’s thesis: A Modern Lover, Muslin Martyrs, John Norton, and The Strike at Arlingford. Robinson states that in The Strike at Arlingford Moore “Condemns the weakness that lets a man put a women before his politics.” Robinson suggests that Moore is in conflict with two worlds:” The Christian idea of marriage,” and the struggle to find meaningful relationships between the sexes.

Robinson explains that Moore’s other works also display another sentiment: The conflict of religion and its use for a cushion for the failures of life and marriage, as shown in John Norton, and the Muslin Martyrs. Robinson comes to the conclusion that religion and chastity, as well as the idea of identity when it comes to the opposite sex, is a topic that inhabits most of Moore’s work.

—David Castro


Shaw, Bernard. “Playwright Cut Playwright: Bernard Shaw on George Moore.” The Shaw Review 23.2: 90-94. Web. 17 Nov. 2015.

Renowned playwright Bernard Shaw was asked by a journalist of The Star to analyze the portrayal of socialism in George Moore’s The Strike at Arlingford. Shaw believes that Moore accurately depicts the economic aspect of the labor industry: that raising wages would lead to the establishment’s financial ruin. Where the production falters, however, is in the depiction of the relationship between capitalists and socialists. In Shaw’s opinion, a genuine labor leader would not let the threat of ruin for the capitalist heads prevent him from pursuing his wage increase. He furthermore would not suppress the party’s funds to benefit the capitalists because of his romantic relationship with the mine owner. Shaw admits that depicting the labor leader as so weak-willed that he would turn on his men for love makes for good drama but in terms of being realistic, however, of all the things a labor leader can be, being weak-willed is the one thing he should not be. Shaw believes that a genuine labor leader would not have suppressed money at the request of his unrequited object of affection. He would have instead gotten the money out of her and still taken her to bed. He would know when circumstances were becoming dangerous for his cause and he certainly would not have committed suicide at the end. According to Shaw, Moore created a fine character for his play but, unfortunately, a play is the only place one would find such a character.

—Nykia Blanks


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