About Oscar Mandel
Oscar Mandel is an acclaimed Belgian-born American author and scholar who has published on numerous topics in English as well as in French. He has written on the subjects of literary theory and art history, translated plays, and authored his own poetry, drama, and fiction. He is a Professor Emeritus of Literature at California Institute of Technology, having taught as a professor there for over 40 years. Learn more at oscarmandel.com
The Kukkurrik Fables
44 Mini-plays for All Media
These original fables—“The conceited minnow,” “The tiger who became humane,” “The stubborn cobbler,” and 41 others—are pungent dramatizations of Oscar Mandel’s Gobble-Up Stories, also published by Prospect Park Books as part of the author’s Otherwise Fables. Actors, directors, producers will find these versions, hailed by the press from Hollywood to Paris and Bern, handy for performance by any number of actors, with or without sets and costumes.
Paperback | $6.00
The Virgin and the Unicorn
Four Plays by Oscar Mandel
In a charmingly imaginary medieval Britain, a devouring Unicorn appears whenever the land becomes too wicked, and only a certified virgin can catch him. Such is the premise of The Virgin and the Unicorn. The other plays? And the Lord God Planted a Garden is a highly original take on the Adam and Eve story. In Water From an Italian Pump the avant-garde playwright Delancey Krott has to cope with a difficult subject: a really nice, nice girl. And honest business meets barren speculation in A Beautiful Investment. Two legend-plays; two here-and-now plays; but as always in the theatre of Oscar Mandel, high imagination pervades the here-and-now as well as the once-upon-a-time. This volume includes a valuable set of corrections for some of the works in Mandel’s two-volume Collected Plays.
In a Licentious Translation from Molière
Who was Amphytrion? One of those Greeks, of course. Pronounce him am-FIT-tree-on. Amphytrion is a newly-married general. His wife is the lovely and loving Alcmena. Zeus, seeing her from afar, is divinely aroused. The trouble is that Alcmena adores her new husband. So the lord of Olympus disguises himself as Amphytrion, back from the war for some well-earned Rest & Recreation. The result: a stupendous mess for all concerned. It brought tears—of laughter—to the eyes of Molière’s audience when he showed off his cream-puff of a comedy in Paris and at Versailles in 1668; and it remains as funny today as it was then. Oscar Mandel has made a free and spicy version of it for modern readers which delicately keeps faith with the original, yet begets a fresh creation, a new original, wittily illustrated with the line drawings of Beth Arnett.
Paperback | $6.00
Four Plays by Oscar Mandel after Homer, Cervantes, Calderón and Marivaux
The son of a king chained for life in a cave, dreaming a bloody dream of tyrannical power. Two heroes of the Trojan War moved to an amazing reconciliation amidst the ruins of the conquered city. The mass suicide of a Spanish town besieged by the Romans. Like three movements of a mighty symphony, Sigismund, Prince of Poland, Agamemnon Triumphant and The Fall of Numantia are followed by a Mozartean comedy, stolen from Marivaux, in which the amiable Prince of Pouponaco seeks to wed a lovely farmgirl inconveniently in love with a farmboy.
Paperback | $16.00
Collected Plays in Two Volumes
Working in a European tradition of theatre, Oscar Mandel takes the reader or spectator into an astonishing variety of human landscapes in the 12 comedies and dramas of these two handsome volumes—Ancient Greece and Roman Iberia, an Istria and Friuli that look suspiciously like our Washington D.C., a mythical Japan in which a Monk and a Demon wander, a mad version of Bolivia at war in the 1920’s, Jerusalem at the time of Christ, the living-room of a certain Matthew who keeps being oppressed by unsavory Victims of Oppression, and even the ghost of an Eskimo descended from the Other World. In short: a 12-course banquet for seekers of colorful drama, meaningful wit, and high imagination.
Volume 1 | ISBN 978-0-87775-000-0
Volume 2 | ISBN 978-0-87775-001-7