The Black and White

Topics: Absurdism, Absurdist fiction, Absurd Pages: 3 (802 words) Published: June 2, 2013
Reality in the Absurdity

Harold Pinter is one of the most prominent living dramatists of the age. The seventy-three year old playwright has written twenty-nine plays and twenty-one screen plays and directed twenty-seven theater productions. He is one of the early practitioners of the Theater of the Absurd started in the fifties. In “The Black and White”, absurd, one of the many different aspects of his works, functions as a method of getting into the reality that Pinter has been concerned.

In the skit, the settings are from sheer realistic life – the familiar scene of people’s daily life and the over-naturalistic dialogue between the characters. What we can read about in “The Black and White” is two ladies, simply known as First and Second, sitting down in a café to eat their soup. They're a little shabby, and seem to be making the time pass. While one of them is short-tempered, the other is vague and not all there, making weird statements without any follow-up. They discuss their soup and bread, the night buses, the cheeky man standing in line, and a recent encounter with the cops. All these things are close to our daily life, and we can feel that not only the two ladies but also those whom they were talking about were just some common people around us. Moreover, the language Pinter uses in “the Black and White” is that of daily conversation so simple and plain that we can easily understand. For example, when the two ladies were discussing when and how they got to the place, they used some sort of colloquial expressions that are grammatically incorrect: FIRST I not long got here.

SECOND Did you get the all-night bus?
FIRST I got the all-night bus straight here.
SECOND Where from?
FIRST Marble Arch.
We get a sense of reality in these words and expressions not only because they are short and therefore colloquial but also because they are so grammatically incorrect that inform us the poor educational...
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