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George Bernard Shaw

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George Bernard Shaw's play Pygmalion sends me a few messages that he was either meaning to get out to his readers, or not. After reading the play, I felt that he was trying to deliver the message that finding one's personal identity is of utmost importance, the importance of proper phonetics in society, and in a way perhaps illustrates an insecurity that Shaw has within his own love life.

Shaw delivers the message that finding one's personal identity is of utmost importance while also conveying that people can't always depend on others to define who they are either. In the play, Liza, who was in a way changed by Higgins, does not necessarily receive her identity from him. She learned the hard way, by struggling to figure out what and who she deserves, where she wants to be, and most importantly, who she is. At the end of the play, she is able to leave Higgins because she has found her own identity, and realizes that she does not need Higgins anymore. She gains enough independence through her strength of character and through maturity of her thoughts as she stood up to Higgins and criticized his way of life, as he always had been the one to criticize hers. Eliza also shows her journey from illusion to reality or from the darkness of her ignorance to the light of her own self- awareness. She struggles against the different temptations along the way and finally achieves self-awareness as a human being.

Phonetics in society is another message I obtained from the play. Shaw states himself in the preface of the play that one of his objectives in writing the play is to create an awareness about the importance of the use of phonetics in society. Although I feel that phonetics is just a small part of what he is trying to get across, the play does create a sense of awareness about the importance of phonetics in society, and he does this imaginatively, so to speak. He focuses my attention on the human implications of Higgins' project rather than on phonetics itself. I felt that being



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