SOME TYPES OF RECENT DRAMA: BROWNING, MAETERLINCK, IBSEN
IN the drama of the last seventy years we may trace two streams of tendency. There is, on the one hand, the stream of romance, of a pronounced and perhaps extreme idealism. On the other hand there is, now for the first time in the history of tragedy, an equally marked tendency towards realism. In the summary account which is all that time allows us, it is only possible to take two or three figures among the host of claimants who present themselves; Browning and Maeterlinck on the side of romance, Ibsen on that of realism; or what, with the limitations to be indicated directly, may pass for realism.
Let us first consider the general development, during this period, of idealism or romance. Roughly, it may be said that the general tendency, a tendency observable in each of our typical figures, is to drive the dramatic motive still further inward, to make it still more immaterial, still more subtle, than it had