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      The Theatre of the Absurd, the Grotesque and Politics 

      HAROLD PINTER

      Peter Lang

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          Abstract

          Varun Begley, in his book, entitled Harold Pinter and the Twilight of Modernism, referring to this artist, contends: “Recondite absurdist, admirer of Beckett, adapter of Proust and Kafka, an apolitical littérateur but also political firebrand, adapter of middle-brow fiction, screenwriter for florid filmmaker Joseph Losey, toast of the West-End – all these tags could be justly applied” (2005, 5). Speaking during the National Student Drama Festival in Bristol in 1962, Pinter referred to “the desire for verification” in respect to his characters, which “cannot always be satisfied.” He also stated “When a character cannot be comfortably defined or understood in terms of the familiar, the tendency is to perch him on a symbolic shelf, out of the harm’s way. Once there, he can be talked about but need not be lived with” (1976, 11). Providing strict classification is hardly ever possible. Nevertheless it is often tempting to offer labels and categories, and thus to systematise the data. So it is also alluring to add two more tags describing this notable playwright, namely the word Pinteresque, and a reference to his getting the Nobel Prize for literature in 2005. It is not certain who was the first to use the term “Pinteresque.” In 1966, during an interview with Lawrence Bensky, Pinter, in a sense, exploded when he heard the expression: “That word! These damn words and that ‘Pinteresque’ particularly – I don’t know what they’re bloody well talking about!” (2005, 64).

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          : 51
          10.3726/9783631857038.003.0002
          495474a5-ce85-419e-8056-7d85b27659ab
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