Man Is Man

Definition

Theater

  • A one-act comedy by Bertolt Brecht, the first of hisworks to employ the controversial Verfremdungseffekt (seealienation effect). The play, first produced in 1926 inDusseldorf, is a satire on military valour. It has also been translatedas A Man's a Man and Man Equals Man.

    The story is set in British India. Galy Gay, a porter, goesout to buy a flounder for lunch. On the way he meets a British machine-guncrew, one of whose members has gone missing; they persuade Gay toimpersonate the man at roll-call, promising to pay him for the inconvenience.When the missing soldier fails to report later, the crew decide toreplace him permanently with Gay. Accordingly they trick Gay intomaking a fraudulent sale, arrest him, and only agree to forego hisexecution if he will assume the other man's identity. He agrees andthe crew is sent to quell an uprising on the Tibetan border, whereGay, outshining the professional soldiers, becomes a hero.

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