Best 1907 Adventures (5)

By: Joshua Glenn
February 19, 2017

One in a series of 10 posts identifying Josh Glenn’s favorite 1907 adventure novels. Happy 110th anniversary!


Theater poster

J.M. Synge’s The Playboy of the Western World.

OK, not a kiss-kiss-bang-bang adventure, but it’s about a woman’s longing for the remarkable and exciting as an antidote to the dreariness of everyday life; and the playwright’s goal was to reveal to Irish audiences the fiery imaginativeness located in the speech patterns of rural Irish folk. The action is set in a pub on the wild coast of Mayo; the village is a dull place. Pegeen, daughter of the pub’s owner, is engaged to respectable Shawn. Enter Christy Mahon, a young man on the run from the police because he’s killed his father; Pegeen falls for him, and the whole town admires his spirit. In Act II, however, Christy’s father shows up — he’s not dead, only wounded. When Christy attacks his father again, will Pegeen and the townsfolk applaud him?

Fun facts: The first performance of The Playboy of the Western World, at Dublin’s Abbey Theatre in January 1907, sparked a riot. During subsequent performances, audience members hurled eggs and potatoes.


Let me know if I’ve missed any 1907 adventures that you particularly admire.


Adventure, Lit Lists