Václav Havel Writing Styles in The Memorandum

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Setting

An absurdist play, The Memorandum takes place in a group of offices in Havel's contemporary place and time. That is, Czechoslovakia in the mid-1960s, when the country was under the rule of Soviet-aligned communists. Under this system, everyone was employed in jobs that were sometimes meaningless and redundant. Each of the three offices is essentially the same, with the furniture arranged differently. Unseen at the conjunction of the offices is the space of the staff watcher, George. His job is to spy on everyone else and make sure they are following the rules. This setting emphasizes oppressive atmosphere and the uniformity of attitudes among those who work in the offices.

Language

At the center of The Memorandum is an artificial language, Ptydepe. This language is supposed to be more efficient and accurate than common vernacular in office communications. Lear tells his students that Ptydepe is scientific, rational...

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This section contains 571 words
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Drama for Students
The Memorandum from Drama for Students. ©2005-2006 Thomson Gale, a part of the Thomson Corporation. All rights reserved.