Is He Dead?

Jumping Frogs: Undiscovered, Rediscovered, and Celebrated Writings of Mark Twain

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Univ of California Press
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The University of California Press is delighted to announce the new publication of this three-act play by one of America's most important and well-loved writers. A highly entertaining comedy that has never appeared in print or on stage, Is He Dead? is finally available to the wide audience Mark Twain wished it to reach. Written in 1898 in Vienna as Twain emerged from one of the deepest depressions of his life, the play shows its author's superb gift for humor operating at its most energetic. The text of Is He Dead?, based on the manuscript in the Mark Twain Papers, appears here together with an illuminating essay by renowned Mark Twain scholar Shelley Fisher Fishkin and with Barry Moser's original woodcut illustrations in a volume that will surely become a treasured addition to the Mark Twain legacy.

Richly intermingling elements of burlesque, farce, and social satire with a wry look at the world market in art, Is He Dead? centers on a group of poor artists in Barbizon, France, who stage the death of a friend to drive up the price of his paintings. In order to make this scheme succeed, the artists hatch some hilarious plots involving cross-dressing, a full-scale fake funeral, lovers' deceptions, and much more.

Mark Twain was fascinated by the theater and made many attempts at playwriting, but this play is certainly his best. Is He Dead? may have been too "out there" for the Victorian 1890s, but today's readers will thoroughly enjoy Mark Twain's well-crafted dialogue, intriguing cast of characters, and above all, his characteristic ebullience and humor. In Shelley Fisher Fishkin's estimation, it is "a champagne cocktail of a play--not too dry, not too sweet, with just the right amount of bubbles and buzz."
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More by Mark Twain

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The complete works of Mark Twain in one collection:CONTENTSTHE INNOCENTS ABROADMARK TWAIN''S (BURLESQUE) AUTO-BIOGRAPHYFIRST ROMANCE.ROUGHING ITTHE GILDED AGE (with Charles Dudley Warner)SKETCHES NEW AND OLDMY WATCHPOLITICAL ECONOMYTHE JUMPING FROGJOURNALISM IN TENNESSEETHE STORY OF THE BAD LITTLE BOYTHE STORY OF THE GOOD LITTLE BOYA COUPLE OF POEMS BY TWAIN AND MOORENIAGARAANSWERS TO CORRESPONDENTSTO RAISE POULTRYEXPERIENCE OF THE MCWILLIAMSES WITH MEMBRANOUS CROUPMY FIRST LITERARY VENTUREHOW THE AUTHOR WAS SOLD IN NEWARKTHE OFFICE BOREJOHNNY GREERTHE FACTS IN THE CASE OF THE GREAT BEEF CONTRACTTHE CASE OF GEORGE FISHERDISGRACEFUL PERSECUTION OF A BOYTHE JUDGES "SPIRITED WOMAN"INFORMATION WANTEDSOME LEARNED FABLES, FOR GOOD OLD BOYS AND GIRLSMY LATE SENATORIAL SECRETARYSHIPA FASHION ITEMRILEY-NEWSPAPER CORRESPONDENTA FINE OLD MANSCIENCE vs. LUCKTHE LATE BENJAMIN FRANKLINMR. BLOKE''S ITEMA MEDIEVAL ROMANCEPETITION CONCERNING COPYRIGHTAFTER-DINNER SPEECHLIONIZING MURDERERSA NEW CRIMEA CURIOUS DREAMA TRUE STORYTHE SIAMESE TWINSSPEECH AT THE SCOTTISH BANQUET IN LONDONA GHOST STORYTHE CAPITOLINE VENUSSPEECH ON ACCIDENT INSURANCEJOHN CHINAMAN IN NEW YORKHOW I EDITED AN AGRICULTURAL PAPERTHE PETRIFIED MANMY BLOODY MASSACRETHE UNDERTAKER''S CHATCONCERNING CHAMBERMAIDSAURELIA''S UNFORTUNATE YOUNG MAN"AFTER" JENKINSABOUT BARBERS"PARTY CRIES" IN IRELANDTHE FACTS CONCERNING THE RECANT RESIGNATIONHISTORY REPEATS ITSELFHONORED AS A CURIOSITYFIRST INTERVIEW KITH ARTEMUS WARDCANNIBALISM IN THE CARSTHE KILLING OF JULIUS CAESAR "LOCALIZED"THE WIDOW''S PROTESTTHE SCRIPTURAL PANORAMISTCURING A COLDA CURIOUS PLEASURE EXCURSIONRUNNING FOR GOVERNORA MYSTERIOUS VISITTHE CURIOUS REPUBLIC OF GONDOUR AND OTHER WHIMSICAL SKETCHESTHE CURIOUS REPUBLIC OF GONDOURA MEMORYINTRODUCTORY TO "MEMORANDA".ABOUT SMELLSA COUPLE OF SAD EXPERIENCESDAN MURPHYTHE "TOURNAMENT" IN A.D. 1870CURIOUS RELIC FOR SALEA REMINISCENCE OF THE BACK SETTLEMENTSA ROYAL COMPLIMENTTHE APPROACHING EPIDEMICTHE TONE-IMPARTING COMMITTEEOUR PRECIOUS LUNATICTHE EUROPEAN WARTHE WILD MAN INTERVIEWEDLAST WORDS OF GREAT MEN1601-CONVERSATION AT THE SOCIAL FIRESIDE OF THE TUDORSTHE FACTS CONCERNING THE RECENT CARNIVAL OF CRIME IN CONNECTICUTTHE ADVENTURES OF TOM SAWYERTHE LOVES OF ALONZO FITZ CLARENCE AND ROSANNAH ETHELTON AND OTHER STORIESTHE LOVES OF ALONZO FITZ CLARENCE AND ROSANNAH ETHELTONON THE DECAY OF THE ART OF LYINGABOUT MAGNANIMOUS-INCIDENT LITERATUREPUNCH, BROTHERS, PUNCHTHE GREAT REVOLUTION IN PITCAIRNTHE CANVASSER''S TALEAN ENCOUNTER WITH AN INTERVIEWERPARIS NOTESLEGEND OF SAGENFELD, IN GERMANYSPEECH ON THE BABIESSPEECH ON THE WEATHERCONCERNING THE AMERICAN LANGUAGEROGERSSOME RAMBLING NOTES OF AN IDLE EXCURSIONTHE STOLEN WHITE ELEPHANTA TRAMP ABROADTHE PRINCE AND THE PAUPERLIFE ON THE MISSISSIPPITHE ADVENTURES OF HUCKLEBERRY FINNA CONNECTICUT YANKEE IN KING ARTHUR''S COURTTHE AMERICAN CLAIMANTEXTRACTS FROM ADAM''S DIARYIN DEFENSE OF HARRIET SHELLEYFENNIMORE COOPER''S LITERARY OFFENCESESSAYS ON PAUL BOURGETTOM SAWYER ABROADTHE TRAGEDY OF PUDD''NHEAD WILSONTHOSE EXTRAORDINARY TWINSPERSONAL RECOLLECTIONS OF JOAN OF ARCTOM SAWYER, DETECTIVEFOLLOWING THE EQUATOR, A JOURNEY AROUND THE WORLDTHE MAN THAT CORRUPTED HADLEYBURG AND OTHER STORIESMY FIRST LIE, AND HOW I GOT OUT OF ITTHE ESQUIMAUX MAIDEN''S ROMANCECHRISTIAN SCIENCE AND THE BOOK OF MRS. EDDYIS HE LIVING OR IS HE DEAD?MY DEBUT AS A LITERARY PERSONAT THE APPETITE-CURECONCERNING THE JEWSFROM THE ''LONDON TIMES'' OF 1904ABOUT PLAY-ACTINGTRAVELLING WITH A REFORMERDIPLOMATIC PAY AND CLOTHESLUCKTHE CAPTAIN''S STORYSTIRRING TIMES IN AUSTRIAMEISTERSCHAFTMY BOYHOOD DREAMSTO THE ABOVE OLD PEOPLEIN MEMORIAM-OLIVIA SUSAN CLEMENSWHAT IS MAN AND OTHER ESSAYSTHE DEATH OF JEANTHE TURNING-POINT OF MY LIFEHOW TO MAKE HISTORY DATES STICKTHE MEMORABLE ASSASSINATIONA SCRAP OF CURIOUS HISTORYSWITZERLAND, THE CRADLE OF LIBERTYAT THE SHRINE OF ST. WAGNERWILLIAM DEAN HOWELLSENGLISH AS SHE IS TAUGHTA SIMPLIFIED ALPHABETAS CONCERNS INTERPRETING THE DEITYCONCERNING TOBACCOTAMING THE BICYCLEIS SHAKESPEARE DEAD?THE MYSTERIOUS STRANGER AND OTHER STORIESTHE MYSTERIOUS STRANGERA FABLEHUNTING THE DECEITFUL TURKEYTHE McWILLIAMSES AND THE BURGLAR ALARMA DOUBLE BARRELED DETECTIVETHE $30,000 BEQUEST AND OTHER STORIESTHE $30,000 BEQUESTA DOG''S TALEWAS IT HEAVEN? OR HELL?A CURE FOR THE BLUESTHE ENEMY CONQUERED; OR, LOVE TRIUMPHANTTHE CALIFORNIAN''S TALEA HELPLESS SITUATIONA TELEPHONIC CONVERSATIONEDWARD MILLS AND GEORGE BENTON: A TALETHE FIVE BOONS OF LIFETHE FIRST WRITING-MACHINESITALIAN WITHOUT A MASTERITALIAN WITH GRAMMARA BURLESQUE BIOGRAPHYHOW TO TELL A STORYGENERAL WASHINGTON''S NEGRO BODY-SERVANTWIT INSPIRATIONS OF THE "TWO-YEAR-OLDS"AN ENTERTAINING ARTICLEA LETTER TO THE SECRETARY OF THE TREASURYAMENDED OBITUARIESA MONUMENT TO ADAMA HUMANE WORD FROM SATANINTRODUCTION TO "THE NEW GUIDE OF THE CONVERSATION"ADVICE TO LITTLE GIRLSPOST-MORTEM POETRYTHE DANGER OF LYING IN BEDPORTRAIT OF KING WILLIAM IIIDOES THE RACE OF MAN LOVE A LORD?EXTRACTS FROM ADAM''S DIARYEVE''S DIARYA HORSE''S TALECHRISTIAN SCIENCEEXTRACT FROM CAPTAIN STORMFIELD''S VISIT TO HEAVENGOLDSMITH''S FRIEND ABROAD AGAINHOW TO TELL A STORYTHE WOUNDED SOLDIERTHE GOLDEN ARMMENTAL TELEGRAPHY AGAINTHE INVALIDS STORYMARK TWAIN''S SPEECHESMARK TWAIN''S LETTERS 1853-1910
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Additional Information

Publisher
Univ of California Press
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Published on
Oct 17, 2003
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Pages
246
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ISBN
9780520939899
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Language
English
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Genres
Literary Criticism / American / General
Performing Arts / Theater / General
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Content Protection
This content is DRM protected.
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Available on Android devices
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Eligible for Family Library

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