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The Theatre of the Absurd ... can be seen as the reflection of what seems to be the attitude most genuinely representative of our own time. The hallmark of this attitude is its sense that the certitudes and unshakable basic assumptions of former ages have been swept away, that they have been tested and found wanting, that they have been discredited as cheap and somewhat childish illusions.

MARTIN ESSLIN, The Theatre of the Absurd

The Theatre of the Absurd has renounced arguing about the absurdity of the human condition; it merely presents it in being--that is, in terms of concrete stage images. This is the difference between the approach of the philosopher and that of the poet.

MARTIN ESSLIN, The Theatre of the Absurd

The Theatre of the Absurd attacks the comfortable certainties of religious or political orthodoxy. It aims to shock its audience out of complacency, to bring it face to face with the harsh facts of the human situation as these writers see it. But the challenge behind this message is anything but one of despair. It is a challenge to accept the human condition as it is, in all its mystery and absurdity, and to bear it with dignity, nobly, responsibly; precisely because there are no easy solutions to the mysteries of existence, because ultimately man is alone in a meaningless world. The shedding of easy solutions, of comforting illusions, may be painful, but it leaves behind it a sense of freedom and relief. And that is why, in the last resort, the Theatre of the Absurd does not provoke tears of despair but the laughter of liberation.

MARTIN ESSLIN, introduction, Absurd Drama

Martin Esslin - A brief biography.

Theatre of the Absurd - A history and analysis of this dramatic movement, which includes the work of such dramatists as Beckett, Ionecso, Genet and Pinter.

Three Plays of the Theatre of the Absurd - In this collection of plays, Walter Wykes creates a series of modern myths, tapping into something in the strata of the subconscious, through ritualism and rich, poetic language. The worlds he creates are brand new and hilarious, yet each contains an ancient horror we all know and cannot escape and have never been able to hang one definitive word on.


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