This website uses cookies to ensure you have the best experience. Learn more

"The Ruling Class" By Peter Barnes.

1026 words - 4 pages

The Ruling Class - Second UnitConsider Barnes' use of surprise and reversals in "The Ruling Class"The Ruling Class is a play about a class that does not rule! Peter Barnes uses the elements of surprise and reversals throughout the play to keep the audience on the edge of their seats.The patriotic start, in the prologue, complete with national anthem, sets the scene with the 13th Earl of Gurney addressing the society of St George. The toast is "-England. This precious stone set in a silver sea." Within moments we have the first surprise and reversal of the play. The Earl undresses with the help of his manservant, only to replace his formal dress and medals with a ballet tutu and a three-cornered cocked hat. This is the first of many hilarious revelations about the aristocratic family. The final sting of the introduction is the death of the Earl caused by him carrying his sexual fantasies to the extreme and hanging himself accidentally on a silken cord off the corner of his four-poster bed.At the reading of the will in the second scene, Tucker, the manservant of the Earl, is transformed from a humble servant, "Yes, my lord." to a high jumping, heel clicking gleeful character at the news that he has inherited a large sum of money in his master's will. "Yippee (Shoots of the chair) Twenty thousand! Twenty thousand smackers! Yawee!" Throughout the rest of the play, Tucker behaves above his station, smoking, drinking and smashing vases in front of the family until he is finally arrested for a murder he didn't commit. The snobbery of the family is shown when Charles makes the comment in Act two scene nine "You simply can't give the working-class money."The next trick that Peter Barnes has in store for the audience is the introduction of the new Earl as a Franciscan monk in scene two, who preaches of God and urges the Bishop to pray. "If the bishop doesn't mind. I think we should pray." This highlights the relationship between Church and State. The shock is further exaggerated by the realisation that he thinks he is God! " your desires freely...I know them already." In scene three there are further revelations about the Earl by Dr Herder, the psychiatrist. Not only is it revealed that the Earl is a paranoid schizophrenic, which is possibly containable, but also in scene four we find he's Bolshie! "Pomp and riches, pride and property will have to be lopped makes all equal...the mighty must bow down..." This shows that not only is the family threatened but the whole social order is in jeopardy.Barnes' use of the "chorus line" routine is a clever trick to maintain the element of surprise for the audience. His characters spontaneously burst into song and dance on stage at the most incongruous moments. For example in Act One Scene Six, when the "two solid, middle-aged women in grotesque hats." appear, the Earl greets them with a song. Unable to resist the charm...

Find Another Essay On "The Ruling Class" by Peter Barnes.

The Fifth Discipline by Peter Senge

580 words - 2 pages The Fifth Discipline by Peter Senge      In his book The Fifth Discipline, Peter Senge emphasizes his model of a "learning organization," which he defines as "an organization that is continually expanding its capacity to create its future." A learning organization excels at both adaptive learning and generative learning.      Senge describes five disciplines that are necessary for a learning organization. "Learning organization" is a

The Medicalization of Society by Peter Conrad

1673 words - 7 pages Peter Conrad’s book, The Medicalization of Society: On the Transformation of Human Conditions into Treatable Disorders, examined several cases of human conditions, once viewed as normal, now considered as medical issues. Conrad defined this transition of human problems to disorders that are medically defined, studied, diagnosed and treated as “medicalization”. Specifically, Conrad discussed certain conditions, such as adult ADHD, as age related

What the World Eats, by Peter Menzel

2267 words - 9 pages Four people sit kneeling around a small table in a small room laden with food. A room where a serious man in a black box holds out a can of something altered and edible, and a young girl perched near her mother clutches a bag of potato chips to her chest as if claiming it as solely her own. This is the scene depicted in a photograph of the Ukita family in Kodaira City, Japan as part of a series taken by Peter Menzel for the book “What the

The Sliding Doors by Peter Howitt

1816 words - 7 pages Peter Howitt’s Sliding Doors (1998) is a film that explores the events that unfold in Helen’s (Gwyneth Paltrow) life after she simultaneously makes and misses her train. Throughout the film, sliding doors appear as a motif and signify that an important event is about to occur or has occurred in Helen’s life. By manipulating the range of story information and mise-en-scene, Howitt is able to juxtapose Helen and James (John Hannah) with Gerry

A comparison essay discussing the different beliefs and concepts of Alan Strang's parents' from the play Equus by Peter Shaffer. The essay discusses the different beliefs on the main issues of the...

672 words - 3 pages father. Horses become a very important part of Alan's life. Yet once again, the theories on horses pose quite different amongst his parents. His mother finds horses to be a representation of prestige and class. While on the other hand, Frank does not like them and is mainly concerned with Alan getting hurt by them. The horses symbolize much more than Alan's passion, but rather the freedom that he does not have at home due to his

"The True History Of The Kelly Gang" By Peter Carey

1191 words - 5 pages step further with his particular blend of writing, which does both credit.The narrative point of view is limited to Ned, following his thoughts, feelings and experiences with places and people throughout his relatively short life. Much detail is described in some areas yet little in others which makes Ned's reflections a little unreliable yet still very much enjoyable. Peter Carey presents his supposed memoir work by delivering just the right

Social and Economic Changes Brought by Peter The Great

837 words - 4 pages . Jean Rousset de Missy experienced the changes that were brought forth by Peter in hair and clothing. The people especially the priests did not like this change. He said that the Russian people called him a tyrant and a pagan. With that being said the people thought that he was a ruthless powerful tyrant. I believe that they saw him that way because he came in and changed many of their traditions for example he made the men cutoff their beards

Review: True history of the Kelly Gang by Peter Carey

1340 words - 5 pages bushranger is very believable. The author turns Kelly's lack of education to his advantage, using Kelly's writing to subvert the reader's expectation of punctuation and tense. Many times I became so completely mesmerized by Carey's Kelly that I had to remind myself that I was reading Carey's words and not Kelly's. Peter Carey's Ned Kelly is not simply a symbol of a daring bygone era. Comparisons with American outlaws such as Jesse James and Billy

Turn The Beat Around" P.22-56 by Peter Shapiro

800 words - 3 pages PAGE 2 PAGE 3 Last Name Student's NameInstructor's nameCourseDate"Racial Paranoia"The reality of racism has been an urgent problem for Americans for centuries and it still is. However, the views of people change with time as well as their culture, beliefs and preferences. In the 5th chapter of his book entitled "Peter Piper Picked Peppers, but Humpty Dumpty Got Pushed", Jackson followed the liaisons of the racial issues with hip-hop

a review of The last wave by peter weir

1651 words - 7 pages . Too bad by that time the point is beyond stressed it isalmost destroyed completely.SOC 118'The Last Wave'-Peter Weir dir.(1977)In the film, The Last Wave, the director is trying to communicate the idea of aculture within a culture or sub culture. The dominant culture in the film is the whitemembers of society living in Australia. The subculture in the film is the Aborigines whowere natives to the land before the white people settled in Australia

Close analysis of the film "Witness" by Peter Wier

1207 words - 5 pages "Witness" is a thriller, which was directed by Peter Weir and released in 1985. The film centres around the Amish community who live in Pennsylvania, and a young Amish boy, Samuel, and his widowed mother, Rachel, who are caught up in the clash between two very different worlds. One world is the modern, American, consumerist world, focused on money, property and individual success, and the other is the contrasting world of the Amish which is

Similar Essays

Control Of The Ruling Class Essay

1142 words - 5 pages from the ones which they intrinsically possess" (Cloward, N/A). The consumers are fed false needs that make them believe that buying certain objects will somehow make them different from all the rest, but they never do so they continue purchasing new things that they do not necessarily need. Marx and Engles argue that throughout history everything that a person believes is created by the ruling class and for the ruling class: "the ideas of the

The Investigation By Peter Weiss Essay

528 words - 2 pages After reading The Investigation by Peter Weiss I feel completely discombobulated. I use this word with care and consideration. This, in my opinion was one of the most powerful books in the sense that it was accordingly written genuinely. The book being an actual play was at first a little confusing to figure out who was talking, the names were not given unless one of the "witness'" addressed them in their dialect. The descriptions of the

The Nutcracker By Peter Tchaikovsky Essay

1603 words - 6 pages integrate elements of expressionism like plot distortion and stylized acting to create a fantasy world. The Nutcracker, written by Peter Ilych Tchaikovsky in 1891, was first performed a week before Christmas in 1892 (History of the Nutcracker). Born in Votkinsk, Russia, on May 7, 1840, Tchaikovsky, the son of a mining engineer, had only occasional musical training as a youth (“Peter Ilych Tchaikovsky” 1). Around the age of twenty-one, he did serious

"The Maestro", By Peter Goldsworthy Essay

808 words - 3 pages The Maestro, by Peter GoldsworthyThe novel Maestro, by Peter Goldsworthy is a beautifully crafted novel dealing with the tragic gulf between talent and genius, between the real and the spurious. Good literature, however, is often judged not only by what is written, but also the way it is written. Reflecting this criteria, Maestro is well written, perfectly contrasted and thus an excellent example of a good piece of literature. Goldsworthy has