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Theatre of Cruelty Saved

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1 Theatre of Cruelty Saved
Edward Bond Theatre of Cruelty Saved

2 Edward Bond Bond was born on 18 July 1934 into a working-class family in Holloway, North London. In 1940, as a child during the World War II he was evacuated to Cornwall and subsequently to his grandparents in Elly. However, he was in London during the bombings in 1940 and This early exposure to the violence and terror of war probably shaped themes in his work, while his experience of the evacuation gave him an awareness of social alienation which would characterise his writing. In 1944, he attended Crouch End Secondary Modern School. As he was not thought enough to take the eleven-plus exam, he left school at the age of fifteen. While still in school, he saw Donald Wolfit’s production of Macbeth, which had a profound impact upon him.

3 «For the very first time… I met somebody who was actually talking about my problems, the life I’d been living, the political society around me… I knew all those people, they were in the street or in the newspapers this (Macbeth) in fact was my world.»

4 During his national service in the army he discovered the naked violence hidden behind normal social behaviour and decided to start writing. Back in London, he educated himself in theatre while working and exercised his skill by writing drama sketches. He was especially impressed by the performances of the Berliner Ensemble in the summer of In June 1958, after submitting two plays to the Royal Court Theatre, which were rejected, Bond was invited to join its newly formed writers’ group.

5 Edward Bond Bond’s famous play, Saved (1965) became one of the best cause célebrés in 20th century British theatre history. Saved delves into the lives of South London working class youths suppressed by a brutal ecenomic system and unable to give their lives meaning, who drift eventually into barbarous mutual violence. Among them, one character, Len, persistently tries to maintain links between people violently tearing each other to pieces. The play shows the social causes of violence and opposes them with individual freedom.

6 Other Plays of Bond Early Morning: He uses 19th century as a mirror to his own times to show the corruptions similar in two times. Passion, Black Mass: He mocks and satirizes religion. For example in Passion, he uses a pig being crucified to shock the audience. Narrow Road to the Deep North: A kindergarten is attacked by soldiers, teachers are raped and killed.

7 Other Plays of Bond Lear, Bingo: he makes use of intertextuality in Lear from Shakespeare. Bingo tells about the last days of W.Shakespeare dividing his wealth. The Fool: It’s about the life of a poet, John Clare.

8 Theatre of Cruelty This genre is a surrealist form of theatre which was theorized by Antonin Artaud. He was a French dramatist who was affected by Balinese Theatre:  He described the impact of the physical action on stage and its effect upon man's conscious; the emergence of the latter not only by means of the spoken word, but also by means of gestures, which should be looked upon as a kind of hieroglyphic or symbol.

9 Theatre of Cruelty Artaud wrote the book The Theatre and Its Double in which Balinese Theatre and Theatre of Cruelty were mentioned. This genre’s aim is to shock the audience into a realisation. The spectators are to be awed and even terrified to such a degree that they will lose the control of their reason. Artaud’s aim was to present violence and cruelty for the sake of cruelty. The spectators must be disturbed and shaken in their minds.

10 Theatre of Cruelty The purpose is to attack to the subconscious of the spectator in order to release and reveal hidden fears and anxieties which are normally surpressed. Action is in the foreground more than language. Screams, cries, symbolic gestures, madness, perversion are common.

11 Plot Summary Scene One The plays opens in the living room. Pam has brought Len home for sex. She insists on using the living-room because her bed is not made. They have trouble getting comfortable. Harry comes in and goes out again. Pam and Len continue their sex play, Harry again puts his head in and Pam and Len offer him candy.

12 Scene Two It takes place in a park near the flat.Len and Pam are in a boat. Len is now a boarder in the flat. They also speak of their relationship, the fact that Harry and Mary haven’t spoken in so many years Pam can’t remember when the silence started or why, that they had a boy during world War II and that he was killed by a bomb in this park. Fred, the boat handler, calls them in and makes crude sexual jokes.

13 Scene Three Pete, Barry, Mike and Colin meet in the park. Pete is dressed in a suit because he is going to the funeral of a boy he killed with his van—intentionally, he says. He openly seeks the admiration of the others and they do admire him for the killing and the fact that he got away with it. They tease Barry and there is lots of low and crude sexual humor.

14 Scene Four It takes place in the living room. Mary puts food on the table, Len eats and Harry dozes in the armchair. Pam enters in her slip, turns on the TV and puts on make-up. The baby starts to cry off-stage and continues to cry throughout the scene. No one does anything to comfort the baby. Fred comes and with Pam they leave. Harry tells Len it’s better for him to sleep with his door closed so he won’t hear Fred and Pam. The baby goes on crying.

15 Scene Five Pam is sick in bed and Len tries to comfort her. She complains about Fred who cheated her. Baby is still crying but Pam does not care. Scene Six The park. Fred is fishing and chatting with Len who has been fired from his job for staying away from work to care for Pam.

16 (continued) Scene Six Pam comes in with the baby in its pram.she leaves the baby there. The baby is drugged with aspirin to keep it quiet. Len goes after Pam. One by one the rest of the gang wander on talking about sex and making cheap jokes. Barry violently hits the pram at Pete and they begin to tease the baby by pinching it, spitting on it, rubbing its face and finally stones it to death.

17 Scene Seven Fred is in jail and Pam visits him. Fred is outraged because he was attacked by a group of housewives when being brought to jail.Fred feels no responsbility for the murder of the play. Len brings cigarettes after Pam leaves, tell Fred that he had watched the whole thing.

18 Scene Eight Scene Nine Scene Ten Scene Eleven Scene Twelve Scene Thirteen

19 The Title “Saved” Maybe the society is saved; as the baby would be another Pam or Fred in the future. The baby is saved from a world full of violence and immorality. The baby is saved from violence through violence paradoxically. Maybe the family was saved by Len staying in the house.

20 Conflicts Man VS Society: People feel the pression of the society. The only way Fred and his gang can express themselves is violence. Man Vs Family: Harry Vs Mary, parents vs children. There is verbal, physical, domestic violence in the household. Man Vs Man: Fred Vs Len, Len Vs The Gang; Len is the questioner of the play. Becoming a gang member is a way of expressing himself for Fred. He finds his identity. Man Vs Woman: The gang see women as only sexual objects.

21 Notes on the play The baby is reduced to an object, referred to as “it”, which means the baby is not given individuality. The ending of the play: Bond says, the ending is irresponsibly optimistic because there is Len trying to help the family (mending the chair.) We do not see the characters suffering at the end. Triangular plot structure. Climax is the stoning of the baby. Symbols: Radio Times: Escapist attitude of individuals and Pam’s passiveness. Blue balloon: A foreshadowing of the death of the baby.

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