The Chairs Topics for Further Study
by Eugene Ionesco

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Topics for Further Study

(Drama for Students)

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Compare and contrast The Chairs with Waiting for Godot, an absurdist play written by Samuel Beckett in 1952. What does each play express about human existence? Which one do you identify with and why?

Research the rates of and reasons for suicide among the elderly. How do your findings relate to the Old Man and Old Woman’s decision to kill themselves at the end of the play?

What do plays like The Chairs say about society at the time it was written? Is the play still relevant? Why or why not?

Reseach the philosophical writings of Albert Camus (such as The Myth of Sisyphus) and Jean- Paul Sartre (such as Being and Nothingness), two authors that greatly influenced Ionesco’s work. Are there direct parallels between the ideas of those philosophers and The Chairs?