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  1. This article was really helpful in my research on the comedy of manners. Could you tell me a little bit about acting styles and techniques used to portray stock characters in this theatre form? Thanks!

    1. Shenna, although in history a comedy of manners play satirised the upper class, anything that sends up the social norms and behaviour of one or more classes or groups of people in society would be considered a modern comedy of manners. This is because it is mocking the everyday customs of those people, sometimes subtly, at other times very obviously. There would be numerous film examples from contemporary culture, but television examples could include Seinfeld, Modern Family, Friends, Absolutely Fabulous etc. – Justin

  2. Technically it is only in England in the 1660s that people should refer to Restoration Comedy and Comedy of Manners as one and the same.

    Primarily, this is because Restoration Comedy only applies to the dominant style of comedy in England during the reign of King Charles II – mainly in the 1660s – but extending to about 1700 (whereby this monarch’s “restoring” of the English throne resulted in this brief period being known as the Restoration).

    More loosely, people often associate the term Restoration Comedy with Comedy of Manners in general. But in other countries and/or at other times, one should only refer to them as Comedy of Manners works.

    Hence, where my article refers to some of the works of Moliere in France during the 1660s, Sheridan in Ireland and Goldsmith in England in the 1770s, or Wilde in England in the 1890s, one should only refer to these works as being in the Comedy of Manners style.

    In terms of content and form, all of the above are generally the same. Whatever period or name we wish to give them, these plays written in different periods and countries all serve the same purpose – to satirise the daily customs of the upper classes in society – historically, the very people in the theatre watching them.

    As to whether Comedy of Manners is actually a theatrical “genre” or a “style” is another post altogether! For me, Comedy of Manners is a sub-genre of Comedy, but one will often see it referred to as a theatrical style. It’s all semantics.


  3. I am confused can anybody tell me is this the same as restoration comedy because in the syllabus they are different styles.