August Strindberg "Miss Julie", dramatic elements, synopsis, analysis

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Miss Julie

By: August Strindberg

Joe Wilson

Theatre History II

GENRE: Naturalistic Tragedy

SETTING: Midsummer Eve, in the kitchen of the Count.

Later, midsummer morning, same.


JULIE: "Aren't you my friend?"

JEAN: "Yes. Sometimes. But don't rely on me."

"What! I fancied I saw the bell move! - No! Shall we stuff it with paper? - Fancy being so afraid of a bell! - Yes, but it isn't only a bell - there's someone behind it - a hand that sets it in motion - and something else that sets the hand in motion . . ." (JEAN).


Miss Julie, 25, daughter of the Count

Jean, 30, a valet

Kristin, 35, a cook.

Chorus of peasants

Roles for 1 man and 2 women plus chorus.


It is midsummer's eve and the servants of the Count are busy with their revelry. Jean enters to report to Kristen the unseeming behavior of Miss Julie. Miss Julie enters and forces Jean to return to the peasant's dance and dance with her. Later, Jean returns to the kitchen, with Miss Julie coming quickly behind. Over drinks, Jean tells her of his love for her. They exit to Jean's bedroom and have sex, while the peasants storm the kitchen and dance. Jean and Miss Julie return from their encounter, and he tells her of his grand plan to start a hotel, to be run by him and funded by her, as the first step toward his becoming a nobleman. Miss Julie checks her funds and reveals that she hasn't enough money to help him. Jean then reveals that his professed love for her was a lie, and tries to convince her that the only recourse is for her to run away. They discuss their options into the night, and...