Strife

STRIFE
By John Galsworthy
Strife is a three-act play by the English writer John Galsworthy. It was his third play, and the most successful of the three. It was produced in 1909 in London at the Duke of York’s Theatre, and in New York at the New Theatre. In the play, there is a prolonged unofficial strike at a factory; as the trade union and the company directors attempt to resolve the affair, which is causing hardship among the workers’ families, there is a confrontation between the company chairman and the leader of the strike.
Strife was Galsworthy’s third play, after The Silver Box (1906), which was successful, and Joy (1907), which failed. He wrote it in a few months in 1907, and sent the manuscript to friends for comment, including Edward Garnett and Joseph Conrad. After being refused by several theatre managers, a successful production in Manchester led to its production in London by Charles Frohman at the Duke of York’s Theatre, opening on 9 March 1909 for the first of six matinee performances. It was well received, and the play was transferred to the Haymarket Theatre, then to the Adelphi Theatre, for evening performances. It attracted much attention. A reviewer in The Times wrote: “When an artist of Mr. Galsworthy’s high endeavour, mental equipment and technical skill writes a play like Strife, he has done much more than write a play, he has rendered a public service”. In New York it opened at the New Theatre on 17 November 1909. It was one of the first plays produced at this theatre, which had opened on 6 November.

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