The Browning Version

Chapter Summary

The Browning Version” is a play by Terence Rattigan that focuses on the attitude of a teenager student towards his teacher. It is a one-act play that involves three characters and is all set in school. The remarks that have done by the student are terrible because they are very close to reality. The student mimics the voice of his teacher, Mr. Crocker-Harris and starts calling the man inhuman. He is very terrified of his teacher.

The reason behind this is that this student’s promotion is completely dependent on the quirk or goodwill of his teacher. However, he chooses to open up when another teacher in the science group encourages and motivates him to do so.

On the other hand, it is clear that this teenager does not have any interest in Greek plays; moreover, he hates those plays. The reason behind this is that he does not like the process or the way of his teacher’s method of teaching the play.

The most important thing about Mr. Crocker-Harris is that it seems like he hates people. However, the reality is different, because he is strict and disciplined, but thinks good of his students. The description of a teacher is damaging which is described here and it ultimately portrays the way how a student fails to understand the real worth of his teacher or guide.

Attitude by Taplow towards Crocker-Harris

The play The browning version talks about the relationship between a student and his teacher and how one student fails to understand the true importance of his guide. Here, Mr. Crocker-Harris is the teacher of Taplow. According to Taplow and other students, Crocker- Harris is nothing but a ruthless, strict disciplinarian and moreover he was represented as a Sadist too.

He is dedicated and hardworking which reflects in his behavior towards Taplow. He calls Taplow on the last day of his school, so he can make up for his missed class. No one has ever missed or cut any of his classes, because he believes everyone deserves equal attention and he is not partial to anyone.

Therefore, he decides to give Taplow what he deserves. In his career, he always wanted to keep a comfortable space with his students, even his co-worker Frank admires him because of the impact that he has on his students. The conception of him among his student, especially Taplow, is that he is cruel and but in reality, he is strict.

Does Frank seem to encourage Taplow’s comments on Crocker-Harris?

In this play The Browning Version, it seems clear that Frank supports Taplow's comments about Mr. Crocker-Harris, especially on the shrivelled up remark. Taplow says that Mr. Crocker-Harris is a person who is shriveled up inside like a nut and also mentions that Crocker-Harris hates those who like him. Frank uses Taplow very cleverly to talk about him, and asked him a series of the question, as Frank was very curious to know the teaching method of Mr. Crocker-Harris. Therefore, Frank used one technique to get more information and started mentioning the name of Mr. Crocker-Harris repeatedly, so Taplow can talk about him and say something more about Crocker-Harris.

About Crocker-Harris

In this play, The Browning Version, Mr. Crocker-Harris is a strict teacher. He is very concerned about his rupees, regulations, and principles. He is a person who is never biased toward his students. To treat them equally, he never shows any kind of emotion in front of them, it helps him in treating all his students equally. The most important thing about him is that he is not a sadist, but a person who is dedicated and serious about his job. His one action shows his true nature as a teacher. On the last day of school, he schedules classes so that his students can make up all the missed classes, and this action shows that he is strict but at the same time he is aware of his responsibilities. He is very meticulous in his works and always remembers his responsibility toward his students.


Q1. What does The Browning Version mean as a title?

Ans. The browning version, means the title of the play is directly connected to the Greek tragedy Agamemnon, which was written by Aeschylus. In this play the character of the main protagonist Mr. Crocker Harris, kind resemblance that of to Agamemnon. In short, the title of the play focuses on his back story of him, which ultimately shaped his personality.

Q2. What is the characteristic of the Mr. Crocker Harris, portrayed in The Browning Version?

Ans. In this play The Browning Version, the teacher, Mr. Crocker-Harris is a middle-aged person. According to his students, he is very wicked, ruthless, and strict as a teacher. However, in reality, the scenario is completely different, because he may look strict or ruthless, but he is a dutiful individual, who always thinks best for his students.

Q3. Why does Frank feel envy of Mr. Crocker Harris?

Ans. Frank has a feeling of envy toward Mr. Crocker Harris, because of the impact that the latter has on his students. However, Frank is very curious to know more about the teaching method of Mr. Crocker Harris.

Q4. What is the main thing that The Browning Version conveys?

Ans. The play The browning version represents the true scenario of the British education system. It reflects the attitude of a teenage student that he shows towards his teacher or guide. Therefore, it can be said that the play focuses on the relationship between the teacher and student. Here, for Taplow, his teacher Mr. Crocker-Harris is simply a ruthless person who is strict and represented as a sadist. Taplow is unaware of the true intention of his teacher, who is responsible and wants good for his students. Taplow mimics and mocks him in front of another teacher Frank, when Mr. Harris was not around. This is the main thing about the play, it represents the situation where the teacher is concerned about his student and the student is incapable of understanding the real worth of his teacher.

Updated on: 02-Jan-2023


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