david mamet

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What we experience in this passage, particularly the last sentence, is an insight into the search of the real meaning of life and the unveiling the “fog” that does not allow the individuals to live the life. This “discovery” or unveiling of the unspoken has triggered a turning point of his life and Edmond wants Glenna to undergo the same process, but she is scared and tells him, “[d]on’t hurt me. No. No. I can’t deal with this” (Edmond: 77). In short, Glenna is not prepared or does not want to be enlighten either by the unspoken or the truth, because she knows that she could not deal with this. The point is that ometimes living in the darkness as if we are not alive is less painful and comfortable than living in the light. It is my contention that all plays come very close to saying something unacceptable about society, something that is very hard for people to hear and internalize because it makes tremble the foundations of our existence. That is the reason why we can postulate that “it is in the interstices between the broken pieces of its discourse that the plight of Mamet's humankind is to be perceived.” (Piette: 174). Secondly, as I have hinted before, I will explore Mamet’s use of the language. As in Beckett and Pinter, there is a distrust of language as a vehicle of communication. We are going to build upon this idea and explore how the atmosphere of anxiety that pervades his plays throughout can then be understood as the result of the ambivalent economic and social structures that lead to the disruption of language in his plays; in other words, to the utter loss of the validity of language as an instrument of communication. This is encapsulated almost explicitly in Mamet’s play Oleanna: “JOHN (simultaneously with ‘notes’)... ... middle of paper ... ...xcess. Pauses and silences encourage others to fill in the gaps, but at the same time they also suggest the possibility of something very different being said. Hence, silence can operate in many levels: as a means of omitting information that might make the characters vulnerable, as a means of challenging the other characters in a struggle for power, as a defence mechanism, or as a means of hiding what really means to be said. A significant instance of silence and pauses occurs in American Buffalo, when Teach argues that his only way to teach Grace and Ruthie about how they should behave is by killing them: “TEACH Then let them talk about it, then. No, I am sorry, Don, I cannot brush this off. They treat me like an asshole, they are an asshole. Pause. The only way to teach these people is to kill them. Pause. DON You want some coffee?” (American Buffalo: 11-12)

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