About us > Past productions > 2011/12 > A Doctor in Spite of Himself
Brush up your knowledge of Molière and commedia dell’arte with these resources provided by our literary department.
- This biographical website on Molière features a detailed timeline of the playwright’s life and complete scripts for many of his plays. In English and French.
The Quack Doctor
- Compared to a lot of what’s recommended by real doctors, Sganarelle’s prescription doesn’t sound that bad. The Quack Doctor, a funny and informative blog about dubious doctors through the ages, reveals some truly horrifying remedies.
Heilbrunn Timeline of Art History
- Commedia dell’arte, a style of comedy that originated in 16th-century Italy, greatly influenced Molière’s writings and can be seen on full display in this production of Doctor. New York’s Metropolitan Museum of Art has a great description of the form on its website.
The Miser and Figaro at Berkeley Rep
- A Doctor In Spite of Himself isn’t the first time Berkeley Rep has collaborated with star/co-adaptor Steven Epp. He also appeared in the 2006 production of Molière’s The Miser and in Figaro from the 2008 season.
The Misanthrope and Other Plays; The Imaginary Invalid; and The Love Doctor
- Jean-Baptiste Poquelin, aka Molière, died in 1673 and yet is still one of France’s most popular exports. Over the course of his short life, the beloved wit befriended the French royal family, became the enemy of the Catholic Church, married a woman who was possibly his own daughter and wrote dozens of hilarious plays with a satirical bite that stings even today. For a selection of Molière’s best known comedies, including A Doctor In Spite of Himself, try The Misanthrope and Other Plays from Signet Classics. And Molière’s critique of the medical profession didn’t stop with A Doctor In Spite of Himself; The Imaginary Invalid and The Love Doctor tackle the same subject with equally ruthless humor.
Blood and Guts: A Short History of Medicine by Roy Porter
- The revered late historian presents an enlightening and highly readable look at the gory traditions of Western medicine and how the role of the doctor has evolved over the centuries.
The Public Mirror: Molière and the Social Commerce of Depiction by Larry F. Norman
- Norman, a professor of humanities at the University of Chicago, examines Molière’s work in the context of 17th-century French society and demonstrates how Molière used humor as a means to criticize the very audiences watching his plays.
Punch and Judy: A Short History with the Original Dialogue by John Payne Collier
- The rambunctious puppet scene that opens A Doctor In Spite of Himself pays homage to Punch and Judy, a British puppet act that’s been popular for centuries. This illustrated survey traces the history and cultural legacy of the famously contentious duo.
- This fanciful French biopic from 2007 speculates on the professional and romantic struggles of a young Molière, played here by actor Romaine Duris. For fans of costume, comedy and romance à la Shakespeare in Love.
A Doctor in Spite of Himself, the opera
- A Doctor In Spite of Himself inspired an opera adaptation by French composer Charles Gounod. Although it’s rarely been heard since its initial premiere in 1858, Yale Opera, in a partnership with the Beinecke Rare Book and Manuscript Library and the Yale French Department, performed the piece in 2004. Learn about the musical score.
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