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A Study of the Plays of Howard Barker, With Special Reference to the Artist Figures

Imran, Mamdouh Yousef (1989) A Study of the Plays of Howard Barker, With Special Reference to the Artist Figures. Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) thesis, University of Kent,. (KAR id:80563)

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Language: English


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Abstract

This thesis attempts to examine Howard Barker's plays and trace his evolution, both politically and as a dramatist, emphasising his oppositional and subversive orientation, as well as to demonstrate the shapes through which his oppositional stance is manifested.

The second part, which is composed of four chapters, concentrates on the aesthetic aspects of Barker's work, and points out that these, too, give clear signs of his oppositional tendency and innovativeness. The first chapter demonstrates the poetic elements of Barker's language, and the second shows that Barker is endowed with a visual imagination that enables him to construct memorable visual images on stage in illustration of dramatic conflict in his plays. The third chapter is addressed to Barker's style of characterization, and argues that Barker's tendency to define characters by their contradictions has recently given way to a more complex method, the simultaneous existence of contradictory qualities within the same psychic. The last chapter investigates the relationship Barker sets between verbal and visual language in his plays, and concludes that violence is an important term of this relationship.

The third part comprises three chapters, the first of which deals with Barker's characterization of 'non-subversive' artists, and concludes that this characterization negatively explains Barker's position at the time of writing the play concerned. The second chapter analyses Barker's portrayal of 'subversive' artists and finds out that explicit connection exists between Barker and his artists. The third chapter is a continuation of the second, but it mainly focuses upon Barker's recent propensity to use the plays themselves as vehicles to reiterate his aesthetic views.

Item Type: Thesis (Doctor of Philosophy (PhD))
Subjects: P Language and Literature > PN Literature (General)
Divisions: Faculties > Humanities > School of English
Depositing User: Rachel Dickinson
Date Deposited: 20 Mar 2020 12:20 UTC
Last Modified: 20 Mar 2020 12:20 UTC
Resource URI: https://kar.kent.ac.uk/id/eprint/80563 (The current URI for this page, for reference purposes)
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