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Explore how Friel uses language in order to create humour and other emotional responses in the audience. Focus particularly on the exchange between Yolland and Marie in Act 2 scene 2 of "Translations"

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Introduction

Eleanor Morris Translations Coursework Explore how Friel has used language in order to create humour and other emotional responses in the audience? Focus particularly on the exchange between Yolland and Marie in Act 2 scene 2. In this essay I intend to explore the relationship between Marie and Yolland. I want to examine how the overall structure of the language presents a comical piece for the audience to watch and discover how the couple overcome the language barrier to connect on a much deeper level. I would also like to look at how they convey their emotions without verbal understanding. Then finally I would like to look at the way in which Friel provokes emotional responses in the audience. In a short play like Translations, the focus of the drama is on ever changing relationships demonstrated through language and conversation. If we study the relationship between Yolland and Marie and focus on their characters we find how different and individual they each are. The couple, prove to be direct opposites of one another. Yolland is an English soldier who has a romantic outlook on the world, whereas Maire is an Irish milkmaid who has a pragmatic view of the world. ...read more.

Middle

'Lieutant George.' (Marie) They use basic and simple language and I feel this is done as the playwright is trying to provoke a sympathetic response from the audience. As with Manus and Sarah, the dialogue is drawn out, slow, yet humouress. Yet is also a display of tenderness and affection and is a way of making themselves known. This relates to the overall theme of identity within the play. If we look at the grammar we find again it is makes use of broken grammar, fragmented sentences and short turn taking roles. Together this creates tension in the audience. Friel makes use of this simple language again later on in the scene with the use of 'water', 'earth' and 'fire' after Maire tries to communicate in Latin. It is after both Yolland and Maire both confess - 'Say anything at all. I love the sound of your speech' and when they both end their unsuccessful attempting at communicating with an exasperated 'Oh my god', it becomes clear just how close a bond the two have begun to form. It is from here that the notion of non-verbal communication is effective. ...read more.

Conclusion

'You're trembling' 'Yes I'm trembling because of you' The beauty of their love comes from their purity - language has not confused or muddled it, and after all, emotions never lie. It is ironic, finally that the person who discovers the couple, who have come together without words, should be Sarah, who also has difficult communicating. In my opinion this is one of the most touching love scenes imaginable, since in it, understanding springs from where there was once none and love grows without the need for words to express it. By the end the two lovers seem to be in perfect harmony with each other just as at the beginning of the scene. This is reflected in the way that their words echo and reinforce what each is saying, as if they could easy follow what the other is saying. In conclusion this scene seems to be an exploration of how language defines who we are and how we interact with one another. We are shown communication can happen without words or grammar but on a much deeper level. The play as a whole deals with many issues and it tries to represent an Ireland that is not especially passionate, nor extremely unsentimental. It is a drama about love and friendship, duty and authority, and both the past and the present. ...read more.

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