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In Harold Pinter's 'The Birthday Party' is it true to say that the character of Stanley is a tragic character? 'The Birthday Party' was one of Harold Pinter's many plays

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Harold Pinter's 'The Birthday Party' In Harold Pinter's 'The Birthday Party' is it true to say that the character of Stanley is a tragic character? 'The Birthday Party' was one of Harold Pinter's many plays. It was his second play and was staged in 1958, but for only one week. This was due to the enormous dislike that people and critics alike had for it. This play was said not to have fit in with the criteria of what people wanted to see at that time i.e. musicals or thrillers. The Birthday Party was considered a second movement of 1950's British Theatre- The theatre of the absurd. A movement depicting life as meaningless and devoid of god. However. The Birthday party was not hated by everyone. A theatrical critic by the name of Harold Hobson commented that the play was both "interesting and hallowed. Other Playwrights were also doing plays like The Birthday Party. In 1956 there was what is called, The Movement of Angry Young Men which was very critical on the British and completely different to what the British people would pay to see. ...read more.


The occupation of these two gentlemen is yet unknown as is the connection between Stanley's worry and their arrival. But once the two men arrive, from the start of act to you can tell that the power Stanley once had now seems almost nothing compared to the new arrivals. It is almost as if Stanley fears them. McCann: I don't think we've met. Stanley: No, we haven't McCann: My name is McCann Stanley: Staying here long? McCann: Not long. What's your name? Stanley: Webber McCann: Were you going out? Stanley: Yes McCann: On your Birthday? Stanley: Yes. Why not? There are many little conversations like this, each one gradually getting more and more uncomfortable and awkward for Stanley. Stanley: Get out. Goldberg: Mr. Webber, sit down. Stanley: It's no good starting any kind of trouble. Goldberg: Sit down. Stanley: Why should I? Goldberg: If you want to know the truth Webber, you're beginning to get on my breasts. Stanley: Really? Well, that's- Goldberg: Sit down. Stanley: No. At this time it looks as if Stanley is in for an unpleasant journey. Which he is. After having many conversations like the one above, Mr. McCann and Mr. Goldberg bombard him with questions both irrelevant and down right stupid. ...read more.


Goldberg: Why do you want to look after him? Petey: He's my guest. Goldberg: He needs special treatment. Petey: We'll find someone. Goldberg: No. Monty's the best there is. Bring him McCann. Petey: Leave him alone! (They stop. Goldberg studies him) Goldberg: (insidiously) why don't you come with us, Mr. Boles? McCann: Yes, why don't you come with us? Goldberg: Come with us to Monty. There is plenty of room in the car. (Petey makes no move. They pass him and reach the front door. McCann opens the door and picks up the suitcases) Petey: (broken) Stan, don't let them tell you what to do! (They exit) After reviewing all the evidence I have put forward, it is true to say that the character of Stanley becomes one of tragedy. He becomes a tragic character, for he falls from power, not a huge amount, but it was enough to make him more powerful than Petey and Meg. He is then forced into a total nervous breakdown as a result of Goldberg and McCann's unrelenting continuous bombardment of ludicrous questions and statements like' why did the chicken cross the road?' After this 'interrogation' he is taken off in the gentlemen's car and ultimately killed, tortured or have something generally unpleasant done to him, therefore resulting him becoming a tragic character. ?? ?? ?? ?? Dudley Beal English ...read more.

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