What the Butler Saw | Critical Essay by John Lahr

This literature criticism consists of approximately 2 pages of analysis & critique of What the Butler Saw.
This section contains 370 words
(approx. 2 pages at 300 words per page)
Buy the Critical Essay by John Lahr

Critical Essay by John Lahr

What the Butler Saw is [Joe Orton's] last and best piece of comic construction. Orton parodies farce in the play and makes use of it for his own serious and sublime comic ends. Farce is an act of literary aggression which Orton carried to its logical extreme—a battle of identity that makes a spectacle of disintegration. Orton saw in farce a way of making violence and frenzy into a resonant metaphor. As events spiral out of control, the characters become numbed victims of pace, moving too fast to notice the truth of their own destructiveness….

The phallus is the emblem of comedy's ruthless sexual mischievousness and amorality. Nobody came closer than Orton to reviving this spirit on the English stage and creating that purest (and rarest) of drama's by-products: joy. (p. 21)

In polite farce, characters keep their...

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This section contains 370 words
(approx. 2 pages at 300 words per page)
Buy the Critical Essay by John Lahr
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