This sixth volume of Brecht's Collected Plays contains three plays he wrote while in exile during the early stages of the Second World War. In Brecht's famous parable The Good Person of Szechwan, the gods come to earth in search of a thoroughly good person. No one can be found until they meet Shen Te, a prostitute with a heart of gold. Rewarded by the gods, she gives up her profession and buys a tabacco shop but finds it is impossible to survive as a good person in a corrupt world without the support of her ruthless alter ego Shui Ta.
The Resistible Rise of Arturo Ui is a savage satire on the rise of Hitler, wittily transposed to gangland Chicago. Brecht's compelling parable continues to have relevance wherever totalitarianism appears today. Written in 1940 during Brecht's exile in Finland, Puntila is one of his greatest creations, to be ranked alongside Galileo and Mother Courage. A hard-drinking Finnish landowner, Puntila suffers from a divided personality: when drunk he is human and humane; when sober, surly and self-centred. The play contains some of the best comedy Brecht wrote for the theatre.
The translations are ideal for both study and performance. The volume is accompanied by a full introduction and notes by the series editor John Willett and includes Brecht's own notes and relevant texts as well as all the important textual variants.