There has been a vast output of dramatic literature in all languages since past ages. It has always been considered as the most potent means of interpreting the ideal and problems of life. The present century also is quite fertile in this form of literature. John Galsworthy has written many plays in English. Shakespeare won an immortal name by written plays. His view was that:
All the world’s stage,
And all the men and women merely players,
They have their exits and their entrances,
And one man in his time plays many parts.
The conception that the world is a stage on which the drama of life is acted has been given to us by these dramatists. So by studying these plays, we begin to regard life as a drama and ourselves as mere actors on the stage of the world. We come on the stage at birth, play our role in our lifetime, and take our exit at our death. We gain this outlook of life hy studying dramatic literature.
A play is a mirror reflecting the mind and personality of the writer. The writer chooses a theme and gives its exposition in his drama. In a play, the writer speaks through the various dramatic personae. He interprets human nature and life in his own way. So every dramatist will give us his own exposition of human nature and eternal laws of life. By studying various dramas we will get the painting of human nature from different angles of vision. Thus it will add to our knowledge and experience. This is a very important educative value of drama.
The drama unfolds the whole canvas of life before us. All aspects of life are painted in such colours and with such preciseness that we cannot evade its effect. So the drama is more effective than any other form of literature.
It intensifies our sentiments and emotions. When the characters play an emotional part, our sentiments too are stirred. For instance Antony’s funeral oration in Julius Caesar stirs even the stones to mutinous rage. In this way our minds are awakened to feel the pulses of surging pathos.
Further, by reading these dramas we develop a very Catholic attitude of mind. By constantly reading the never-ending strife between good and evil, we gain peace of mind. We usually identify ourselves or others with various characters in plays. For example, we try to find a Lago in living society.
He is the master-villain like Count Fosco. These are eternal characters and will last as long as humanity lasts. So it sharpens our sense of penetration and study of society. We try to discover such characters in human society. In summing up I must say that the educative value of – dramas is as great as that of travels, etc.