• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

Analysing 'Whose Life Anyway?'

Extracts from this document...

Introduction

'Whose Life Is It Anyway?' Analysing The Play The play's overall theme is based on issues surrounding euthanasia and assisted suicide. The subject or euthanasia presents many ethical and moral problems to the characters in the play, to the reader, and in today's society. Before the 21st Century, assisted suicide was seen as morally wrong, nowadays, people's views have changed a little, but many believe it is still wrong and euthanasia is still illegal in most countries. The issue of euthanasia is very emotional and allows the audience to form their own opinions. Its also portrays the problems the characters have to deal with, which aids the audience in relating to the characters, thus improving their understanding of the situation. The title 'Whose life is it anyway' shows Ken's struggle to have control over his life, as the doctors, particularly due to his almost complete paralysis, have almost complete control over his life and treatment. The issue of whether Ken should have been allowed to end his own life represents a wider issue which is still relevant today, almost 30 years on. ...read more.

Middle

It is also not mentally stimulating enough for Ken, as his intelligence is not being used to its full potential. During Act One, the audience is introduced to most of the characters, the setting and Ken's unfortunate situation. The 'subplot' involving Kay Sadler and John also becomes apparent, and continues to develop throughout the play. The audience begin to form their own opinions on the issue, and the statement: "I've decided not to stay alive" Is very powerful. It increases the tension within the hospital and gives the audience 'food for thought' as they experience the emotions brought on by such a cutting statement. In Act One, Ken's feelings are at their lowest point He feels lonely and depressed and this negativity eventually peaks when he makes the decision to end his life. Tension is a crucial part of the atmospheric progression in the play. The part where Ken receives 'Valium' against his will is a major point of tension: "I specifically refused permission for you to stick that needle in me and you didn't listen." Both this incident and the meeting with Mrs Boyle create tension. ...read more.

Conclusion

The play is extremely thought provoking and it insists the audience challenge and discuss the issues raised about euthanasia. In conclusion, I think that Brian Clark has used sympathy and tension to intrigue and entertain the audience, as well as using a controversial issue. This maintains the attention of the audience and the constant progression of the plot, particularly the 'sub-plots', which add a little light relief from the main dramatic content and bring in an emotional side to the play, thus helping the audience to relate to the points being brought about. The use of humour and sexual innuendo's is also notable, this lightens the tone and also helps the audience to build attachment to Ken as he makes them laugh and feel comfortable. The issues surrounding euthanasia are still sensitive and controversial, and even more so in the 1970's, at the time of the play's release. The issue is highly opinionated, and the fact that Ken fights for his own right to die questions morals and ethics, both from the audience, and society as a whole. In my opinion, Ken should have had the right to die, and others, of sound mind, should be allowed to do so if it is seen to be beneficial. ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our AS and A Level Plays section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related AS and A Level Plays essays

  1. "Whose life is it anyway?" - Ken Harrison

    build a trust and she is also listening to what he has to say about the Valium.

  2. Bouncers Plot adn Sub Plot

    Judd tries to get a kiss from Les but Les is making excuses and eventually confrontation rears its ugly head. * Eric and Judd become bouncers ready to sort out the trouble but along the way Judd calls Eric soft and eventually a small fight breaks out between them as Eric starts to lose it.

  1. How does Brian Clark make use of dramatic techniques to make the audience sympathise ...

    At times, Dr. Emerson's efficiency and authority over Ken makes him seem like the villain. For example Dr. Emerson injects Ken with a tranquilliser when Ken refuses it. The audience feel sympathy for Ken, as he is completely powerless. They can also feel empathy for the frustration he feels when

  2. Analysing Plot and Subplot of 'whose life is it anyway?'

    This request is rejected by the doctors. As the plot is revealed towards the end of act one when Dr Scott and Ken talk about euthanasia, it is evident that some of the more sensitive issues are involved in the play and each character's morals and ethics are questioned.

  1. Evaluate Brian Clark's play "Whose Life Is It Anyway?"

    Given the advancement in science and medical knowledge, life expectancy has increased. With the increased length of life, the number of people suffering from incurable diseases has also increased. Thus, the issue of a person's right to determine when and how to die has becoming more important.

  2. Whose life is it anyway?

    This shows how much Ken wants to win his case. The audience sympasizes the most in the tribunal scenes because the Judge announces that Ken will not have a say in the hearing. This is upsetting for the audience because it shows that Ken will not have a say in his defense, which will lead to his own life.

  1. Discuss How You Would Direct Two Key Scenes in Whose Life Is It Anyway?

    The liberal sexual innuendo that scurries throughout the play comes from Ken. It draws attention to his sex-life- and his inability to engage in it. Coming form another character it would seem normal wit, but from Ken it's contemplated in a different way and causes the audience to absorb Ken's views in a contrasting sense to others' opinions.

  2. Does Clark present arguments for and against 'assisted suicide' without prejudicing the audience in ...

    Therefore they would be less easily prejudiced by the play. Nowadays people are well aware of their rights and know what they are and are not entitled to. For example, the Patient Charter, which informs patients of the intentions and allocations of the government.

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work