The Caretaker By Pinter A Play Can — страница 2

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the accepted use of dramatic conventions. There is no traditional relation of character histories within the opening scenes and lack of revelation is maintained throughout the play as relatively little is exposed about the characters backgrounds. This makes events within the room conditional phenomena, which are dependent on the individuals involved and what the audience is able to interpret. Pinter denies meaning in traditional places of discovery and appears to provide it by means and in situations that are not socially acceptable or considered as being the norm. An example of this is the obvious exposition in Aston’s long monologue about his time within a mental institution. The discussion of such topics with practically a complete stranger and in social conversation

definitely oversteps the mark of social acceptability. The discussion of such topics is very ?in your face’ and would be very disturbing and confrontational to the original audience and modern audiences. Pinter is able to create realisation of the inadequacies of the rules that govern polite behaviour. This monologue disrupts the traditional notions of ? good’ and ?evil’, and in effect reverses these roles. Within this speech, Aston presents a doctor in negative images, and this figure who is traditionally seen as the wielder of power, status and security is presented as an repressive agent of an oppressive institution who uses physical and brutal means to deal with ? patients’. The affirmed ideas of hospitals being a place of safety and refuge, and doctors as ?good’ is

also deconstructed by Pinter. Aston’s monologue serves to shock the audience as he talks about something that the conservative society was not open with, oversteps the mark of acceptability. Hence the audience would have been confronted with ideas that were previously ignored or ?swept under the carpet’, ideas that to many would be quite disturbing; ASTON: Then one day they took me to a hospital, right outside London. They? got me there. I didn’t want to go. Anyway? I tried to get out quite a few time. But? it wasn’t very easy. They asked me questions, in there. Got me in and asked me all sorts of questions. Well, I told them? when they wanted to know? what my thoughts were. Hmmnn. Then one day? this man? doctor, I suppose? the head one? he was quite a man of?

distinction. Aston’s monologue also disrupts the audiences concept of civil rights. In a democratic nation it is generally expected that what people are thinking is their right. However this passage suggests that this notion is not true as Aston was forced to reveal his thoughts. This is a very disturbing idea, as it demonstrates that powerful institutions are able to force individuals into submission and minimise their individuality. Especially after World War Two the presentation of such ideas would be particularly disturbing as after this war the rights of a individual were strongly valued to a greater extent to ever before. The Caretaker discusses the illusory nature of security and challenges the audiences traditional notions of safety and the home as a place of refuge.

Davies refusal to be caretaker because he could be ?buggered as easy as that’ if he opened the door is clearly juxtaposed with the scene were Davies is pursued by an electrolux controlled by Mick. The original Audiences of the late 1950’s and 1960’s would have been only too well aware of the terror and fear that was generated by the knock at the door, because of the possibility of bearing bad news as a result of World War Two. Hence this idea of the home as not being a secure refuge may have been very disturbing to the audiences of this time, and this coupled with the idea that the apparently mundane holds elements of power and hazard would have threatened many audiences values and assumptions; ASTON: You see, what we could do, we could? I could fit a bell at the bottom,

outside the front door, with “Caretaker” on it. And you could answer any queries. DAVIES: Oh, I don’t know about that. ASTON: Why not? DAVIES: Well, I mean, you don’t know who might come up them front steps, do you? I got to be a bit careful? A few minutes later Suddenly the electrolux starts to hum. A figure moves with it, guiding it. The nozzle moves along the floor after DAVIES, who skips, dives away from it and falls, breathlessly Before Pinter and other existential playwrights, language was used primarily to provide the audience with a means of understanding, by which they were able to come away with some knowledge and insight at the end of the play. Within The Caretaker, language is not used in this way, instead its use is extended to being a weapon and a form of