The Analysis of The Play Dangerous Corner by J.B.Priestley
John Boyton Priestley is one of the outstanding English authors. His Time Plays brought him world fame. He was the first one who used time tricks in his works. Priestley`s most famous novels are They Walk In The City, Angel Pavement, Wonder Hero, Far Away, Bright Day, but I`d like to analyze his creation which was his first effort in dramatic art, the extract from the play Dangerous Corner.
According to its metaphorical title we can guess that the play describes a dangerous situation and dangerous corner can be considered as a dead end, a rather difficult situation which has no way out. This fact proves ...view middle of the document...
As for the message, it`s sounds like Let the sleeping dog lie.
The situation described in the play deals with the state of affairs in the family of Caplans. From the beginning we can see the development of two plots: wireless play and the situation on the stage which are mixed. The wire less play is called The Sleeping Dog which is neither more nor less than the allusion to the proverb let the sleeping dogs lie (не буди лихо,пока лихо тихо),which is like the truth which shouldn`t be disturbed. But not all the characters agree with this statement. Robert Caplan starts investigating the trifling facts about his brother`s suicide. A big quarrel leads to Robert`s suicide.
In the plot structure there`s exposition where we make the acquaintance of the characters and it`s also the incitement for the quarrel; climax where all the truth is revealed and the denouement-the revolver shot and Robert`s suicide. But if you read the whole play but not several fragments, you`ll find out that in fact the denouement is the second variant of events or so-called time-trick which allows us to investigate the characters in a new, deepen level.
The 1st part produces the effect of the idle talk mostly thanks to author`s remarks: who doesn`t care, in her best childish manner or still fiddling with thw wireless- they shows us that the characters pretend to be not so deeply interested in the topis discussed. The atmosphere here is quite boring. Then in order to keep the discussion going each character repeats the phrase or word of the previous one.
(Eg. Miss M.: But we meant something much more serious.
Robert: Serious or not I`m all for it coming out. It`s healthy.
Stanton: I think telling the truth is about as healthy as skidding round a corner at sixty.)
Because of the idleness and seriousness of the topic here irony is created with means of syntax and intonation. The keyword is `truth'. It is repeated several times, because the author wants us to pay more attention to it as it holds the man message of the story. Here we should also point out the fact that there are no or not so many colloq. in their speech. There are some-damned farmyard, fiddling, dirty, cracked, which help to create an ironical effect, and the irony "what fun they have at the B.B.C." also contributes to this effect, but nevertheless. And it shows the high educational level of the family. The 1st sign of seriousness of the discussion is the phrase To lie or not to lie - to be or not to be- the allusion to a question of life and death for Hamlet. In this very play truth is one of such concepts as secret, lie, treacherous stuff, God`s truth, self-deception, rotten stuff, to cheat, trifling facts.
Unlike the 1st part, the atmosphere of the 2nd one changes greatly. As the quarrel begins thanks to the devices we can feel the growth of the tension....