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What the Butler Saw Essay | Critical Essay #3

This Study Guide consists of approximately 67 pages of chapter summaries, quotes, character analysis, themes, and more - everything you need to sharpen your knowledge of What the Butler Saw.
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Critical Essay #3

In this overview of Or ton's plays, Bull delineates the plot and provides background history on the playwright's work, including the comparisons that have been made between Orton and Oscar Wilde.

What the Butler Saw turned out to be Joe Orton's final play, a magnificently comic celebration of excess that for the first time properly, or perhaps improperly, united his interest in the comic potential of language with his wonderment at the absurdities of the physical manifestations of behaviour. It is not only quite easily his best play, it heralds the arrival of what would have been one of the major post-war playwrights.

The plot is not readily summarised, its many and intricate complications being themselves a major part of the play's concern with the way in which rationalising words are ultimately always betrayed by the stronger imperatives of the body. Suitably enough the play is set in...

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This section contains 1,198 words
(approx. 4 pages at 300 words per page)
Purchase our What the Butler Saw Study Guide
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What the Butler Saw from BookRags and Gale's For Students Series. ©2005-2006 Thomson Gale, a part of the Thomson Corporation. All rights reserved.
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