Not much remained to be said about Racine as a dramatic artist, but as one brought up to consider Shakespeare as the model of tragedy, the author brings a fresh approach to a dramatist who has been to a great extent a Gallic monopoly.
"Professor Lapp's study is one of the best that has been devoted to Racine anywhere at any time ... The book is so full of original -- and sometimes audacious -- apercus, that it is difficult in a brief review to give an adequate idea of its contents. The part from which the most solid profits can be drawn is, in my judgement, the central core devoted to an examination of the way in which Racine adapted the famous "contentions" of neo-classical theory to his own purposes and thereby establish a new kind of tragedy. This is brilliantly done and puts every student of Racine in debt to Mr. Lapp ... All lovers of Racine should be grateful to Professor Lapp for revealing to them wit his percipient eve, his scholarly knowledge and his sensitive taste beauties which repeated readings of Racine had not vouchsafed to them."
"Voici un livre qui a les plus grades merites. Le titre modeste cache en fait un veritable essai d'esthetique racinienne .. Ce n'est point Racine poete qui doit nous retenir, mais Racine auteur tragique. Le point de depart est excellent. Le developpement ne l'est pas moins. Tout l'etude sera consacree a la nature tragique des aspects qu'offre le theatre racinien. M. Lapp s'appuie sur une lecture attentive et fervente de l'ecrivain. Il utilise les travaux des ses predecesseurs, aven discretion et avec esprit critique: toujours il confronte leurs observations avec son experience personelle. Sa synthese, bien qu'elle comport des troubailles estrangeres, les assimile parfaitement et forme un ensemble homogene et nouveau."