Class Classification In Arnold Wesker’s Roots

1952 words - 8 pages

Arnold Wesker, an English playwright, a writer of international reputation, was born in Stephney (London) on 24 May,1932.He is the author of about Forty two plays mainly for the stage, four books of short stories, two collections of essays, a book for young people, three more of non-fiction and an autobiography. His works depict various themes, ideas, an obvious expression of deep sympathy, dreams, hopes and the humanism. Wesker is a dramatist with distinct social leanings. Roots is the second play of Wesker Triology which begins with Chicken soup with Barley and ends with I’m talking about Jerusalem. Roots considered as kitchen- sink drama as this drama revolved, both physically and psychologically, around the kitchen sink. It is a play of relationships; husband-wife relationship, mother-daughter relationship, siblings’s relationship, man-woman relationship and master - servant relationship. Roots bring in light the problems of working class in the 20th century. Wesker brings out apathy of working class, dullness, stubbornness, drabness and cultural decadence. He stressed on importance of education because education is the only tool which will make them fully humane in this materialistic society. Through Roots Wesker urges working class to fight against existing social system by becoming educated and taking part in discussions to improve their condition. The play is a powerful attack on pop culture which has deadend the intellectuality of working class. . He focussed on evolutionary measures not on revolutionary. Wesker believes that art, culture and education can bring huge change in condition of working class.
Keywords: Materialism, Intellectuality, Cultural Decadence
. Roots is the second play of Wesker Triology in which the differences between two classes are depicted one working class i.e. kitchen employees who are exposed to urbanized capitalist world and second the rural people of Norfolk who are farm laborers. The play is a story of a forthright of Beatie Bryant’s life, Beatie Bryant, “an ample, blonde, healthy-faced young woman of twenty-two years” (Wesker P.13). The conflicts between the two generations i.e parents and children are well depicted through Roots. In this play Wesker tried to explore and expose the emotions in human relationships in the post-war Britain. Wesker has made an attempt to study the role of communication in a family, community and in the context of culture.
The un intellectual rural environment is the main cause of rootlessness, selfishness and lack of communication. They remain indulged in random observation and lazy gossips even they were incapable of exchanging ideas. Even the elderly Bryant couple’s relationship was not harmonious. Wesker find out the cause behind this disharmony is lack of money. Money plays great role in keeping a relationship harmonious even husband-wife’s relationship is not an exception. There was lack of communication between Mr. and Mrs. Bryant. They have accepted silence to avoid...

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