The Importance of Being Earnest and Four Other Plays, by Oscar Wilde, is part of the Barnes & Noble Classics series, which offers quality editions at affordable prices to the student and the general reader, including new scholarship, thoughtful design, and pages of carefully crafted extras. Here are some of the remarkable features of Barnes & Noble Classics: New introductions commissioned from today's top writers and scholars Biographies of the authors Chronologies of contemporary historical, biographical, and cultural events Footnotes and endnotes Selective discussions of imitations, parodies, poems, books, plays, paintings, operas, statuary, and films inspired by the work Comments by other famous authors Study questions to challenge the reader's viewpoints and expectations Bibliographies for further reading Indices & Glossaries, when appropriate All editions are beautifully designed and are printed to superior specifications; some include illustrations of historical interest. Barnes & Noble Classics pulls together a constellation of influences?biographical, historical, and literary?to enrich each reader's understanding of these enduring works. Oscar Wilde's legendary wit dazzles in The Importance of Being Earnest, one of the greatest and most popular works of drama to emerge from Victorian England. A light-hearted satire of the absurdity of all forms and conventions, this comic masterpiece features an unforgettable cast of characters who, as critic Max Beerbohm observed, ?speak a kind of beautiful nonsense?the language of high comedy, twisted into fantasy.” This collection also includes Oscar Wilde's most famous comedies, Lady Windermere's Fan, A Woman of No Importance, and An Ideal Husband, as well as his poetic tragedy Salomé?all written between 1891 and 1895, Wilde's most creative period. George Bernard Shaw said of Oscar Wilde that he is ?our most thorough playwright. He plays with everything: with wit, with philosophy, with drama, with actors and audience, with the whole theater.” Kenneth Krauss received his Ph.D. from Columbia University. He teaches drama at the College of Saint Rose, where he also directs and produces. His most recent book is The Drama of Fallen France, on French theater under the German Occupation.