The Club

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The Club (1978), written by David Williamson, is a satirical play that follows the fortunes and misfortunes of a football club over the course of the season. David Williamson cleverly integrates the realistic portrayal of characters and dialogue into the play in order to effectively provide the reader with an insight into the power and politics of sport and the commoditisation of players. The main themes in The Club that David Williamson communicates across to the reader are power and the concept of ‘human loyalty verses materialistic gain’, which will be explained in further detail below. Power is also explored extensively in The Club; much of the play is based on power struggles between the characters. As mentioned earlier, the power struggle between Laurie and Jock is evidenced by Laurie’s accusation that Jock supported the committee’s traditional approach only to stop Laurie from succeeding. Obviously some of the characters are much more successful than others. For example, Gerry is able to skilfully manipulate the other characters so he can accomplish his own hidden agenda. However the two players, Danny (the team Captain) and Geoff, do not really become involved in these power struggles except when they aid Laurie at the end of the play. Ted (the president) has the most obvious power at the start of the play, although he steadily loses it throughout as the other characters strive to improve their standing. The desire for power is basically universal, and there is resentment from those who are not in power towards those who are. These sporting attitudes have been clearly evident in sport in the last few decades. Attitudes towards commercialism are also explored in The Club. In the play, the Club itself is just beginning the road to commercialisation with the purchase of Geoff Hayward (the star recruit) for $90,000. However, Gerry (the administrator) and Jock’s plans for next year not only include the dropping of some Club traditions, but also extensive...
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