Quaker Studies

Staging Quakerism in American Theatre and Film

Quaker Studies (2009), 14, (1), 57–71.

Abstract

Arguing that Quakers have been used as influential stock characters in American performance culture, this essay profiles several examples of Quakers as represented in American theater and film: John Murdock’s play The Triumphs of Love (1795), Harry F. Millarde’s lost silent film The Quack Quakers (1916), and the Academy Award winning film High Noon (1952). Paradoxically, in each of these productions, which range from farce to serious drama, Friends are shown as either claiming or as striving for unattainable moral and religious human ideals, but also as an exemplary community of individuals against which other Americans might and should be measured.

Staging Quakerism in American Theatre and Film

Abstract

Arguing that Quakers have been used as influential stock characters in American performance culture, this essay profiles several examples of Quakers as represented in American theater and film: John Murdock’s play The Triumphs of Love (1795), Harry F. Millarde’s lost silent film The Quack Quakers (1916), and the Academy Award winning film High Noon (1952). Paradoxically, in each of these productions, which range from farce to serious drama, Friends are shown as either claiming or as striving for unattainable moral and religious human ideals, but also as an exemplary community of individuals against which other Americans might and should be measured.


Details

Author details

Ryan, James Emmett