1 T.C ATILIM ÜNİVERSİTESİ SOSYAL BİLİMLER ENSTİTÜSÜ İNGİLİZ DİLİ VE EDEBİYATI ANABİLİM DALI YÜKSEK LİSANS TEZİ Character Conflicts in Peter Shaffer s The Royal Hunt of The Sun, Equus and Amadeus SEDA BİLİR Ankara, 2007
2 T.C ATILIM ÜNİVERSİTESİ SOSYAL BİLİMLER ENSTİTÜSÜ İNGİLİZ DİLİ VE EDEBİYATI ANABİLİM DALI YÜKSEK LİSANS TEZİ Character Conflicts in Peter Shaffer s The Royal Hunt of The Sun, Equus and Amadeus SEDA BİLİR TEZ DANIŞMANI Yard. Doç. Dr. Marcia VALE Ankara, 2007
3 T.C Atılım Üniversitesi Sosyal Bilimler Enstitüsü Müdürlüğü ne Seda Bilir e ait Character Conflicts in Peter Schaffer s The Royal Hunt of The Sun, Equus and Amedeus adlı çalışma, jürimiz tarafından İngiliz Dili ve Edebiyatı Anabilim Dalında YÜKSEK LİSANS TEZİ olarak kabul edilmiştir.... Başkan: Yard. Doç. Dr. Hande Seber... Üye: Yard. Doç. Dr. Marcia Vale (Danışman)... Üye: Yard. Doç. Dr. Evrim Doğan
4 i ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS In the first place, I would like to express my deepest gratitude to my advisor Assis. Prof. Dr. Marcia Vale who has offered great encouragement, guidance and support in all phases of this study. I would like to convey special thanks to Prof. Dr. Oya Batum Menteşe, Prof. Dr. Gülsen Canlı, and Assoc. Prof. Dr. Lerzan Gültekin because of their invaluable contribution to my master studies through the courses they have given. I would like to express my gratitude to Assis. Prof. Dr. Evrim Doğan for her guidance and encouragement. I would also like to thank Assis. Prof. Dr. Hande Seber for her advice. I am much indebted to Ayşe Sümer who has always encouraged and supported me to start and finish the master program. I would thank to Feride Güven and the colleagues who have supported me in the Departmental English Language Studies Unit. My thanks also go to my instructors at Hacettepe University, American Culture and Literature Department. I thank my friend Belgin Selen Haktanır who has always supported me through the duration of my studies. I am also grateful to Seyit Mümin Cilasun without whose support I would have great difficulty in feeling motivated to write this thesis. I lastly thank my beloved family, Mehmet Bilir, Semra Bilir, and Melike Bilir, because of their endless love and patience.
5 ii ABSTRACT The purpose of this thesis is to analyze the character conflicts in three of Peter Shaffer s plays, The Royal Hunt of the Sun, Equus, and Amadeus. The method used in this work is the textual analysis of the three plays. Before the analysis of the works, background information has been given regarding the significance and types of conflicts. Through the analysis, characters, their relations and the conflicts they go through have been analyzed by considering time, place, and the consequences that the conflicts have led to. In these three plays, Shaffer created character pairs who represent two opposing personality traits, and he deals with the conflicts that emerge after the contrasting characters encounters. In each play, Shaffer reflects his conflicting characters through different periods: sixteenth century Spain and Peru in The Royal Hunt of the Sun, twentieth century England in Equus, and eighteenth century Vienna in Amadeus are portrayed. The character who is trapped by the conflicts undergoes a change within the three plays and reaches a self-realization after he meets the character with belief or passion. Through these self-realizations, Shaffer frequently underlines the theme of worship. In The Royal Hunt of the Sun, Pizarro realizes that Athauallpa s worship could give Pizarro the spiritual power that he needs; in Equus, Dysart understands that Alan s primitive and passionate worship contributes to his individuality, and in Amadeus, Salieri recognizes his limited talent in music and that makes him begin to fight against God. The self-realizations that Pizarro, Dysart, and Salieri have prepare a destruction for the end of the three plays. Athauallpa dies and Pizarro loses his hope, Dysart has to continue his treatment of Alan and kill the passion in him, and Salieri assassinates Mozart and commits suicide. As a conclusion, although the three plays belong to three different historical periods and geographical places, we see that the same theme of personal conflict between two characters that complement each other is evident. Furthermore, the conflicts that the characters tasted give rise to a self-realization in each play; however, this realization turns into a destruction for the characters in time.
6 iii ÖZ Bu tez, Peter Shaffer in Güneşin Görkemli Avlanışı, Küheylan ve Amadeus adlı üç oyunundaki karakter çatışmalarını incelemeyi amaçlamaktadır. Bu çalışmada metin analizi metodu uygulanmıştır. Analiz öncesinde, karakter çatışmasının önemi ve türleriyle ilgili temel bilgi verilmiştir. Analiz boyunca ise, karakterler, ilişkileri, ve yaşadıkları çatışmalar zaman, yer ve çatışmaların sonuçları göz önünde bulundurularak incelenmiştir. Sözü edilen üç oyunda da Shaffer, iki karşıt kişilik yapısını temsil eden karakter çiftleri yaratmıştır, ve bu zıt karakterlerin karşılaşmalarıyla ortaya çıkan çatışma üzerinde durmuştur. Shaffer çatışma halindeki karakterlerini her bir oyunda farklı bir dönem içinde anlatmıştır: Güneşin Görkemli Avlanışı nda onaltıncı yüzyıldaki İspanya ve Peru, Küheylan da yirminci yüzyıl İngiltere si, ve Amadeus ta onsekizinci yüzyıl Viyana si resmedilmiştir.çatışmalar tarafından sıkıştırılmış karakterler üç oyunda da bir tür değişim yaşarlar ve inançlı ya da tukulu karakterle karşılaştıktan sonra kişisel bir farkındalığa ulaşırlar. Bu kişisel farkındalık süresi boyunca, Shaffer sıklıkla ibadet temasının altını çizer. Güneşin Görkemli Avlanışı nda Pizarro Athauallpa nın inancının ona ihtiyaç duyduğu ruhani gücü verebileceğine inanır, Küheylan da Dysart Alan ın ilkel ve tutkulu tapınmasının kişiliğine katkısını farkeder, ve Amadeus ta Salieri sınırlı yeteneğini görür ve bu da onu Tanrı ile bir savaşa sürükler. Pizarro, Dysart, ve Salieri nin ulaştığı kişisel farkındalıklar üç oyunun da sonu için felaketler hazırlar. Athauallpa ölür ve Pizarro umudunu yitirir; Dysart tedavisine devam edip, Alan ın içindeki tutkuyu öldürmek zorunda kalır; ve Salieri Mozart a bir suikast düzenler, kendisi de intihar eder. Sonuç olarak, üç oyun farklı tarihsel süreç ve coğrafyalara aittir, ancak yine de birbirini tamamlayan iki karakter arasındaki kişisel çatışma teması belirgin olarak ortaya çıkmaktadır. Bunun da ötesinde, oyunların herbirinde karakterlerin yaşadıkları çatışmalar kişisel farkındalığa yol açar; ancak bu farkındalık karakterler için zamanla yıkıma dönüşür.
7 iv TABLE OF CONTENTS 1.INTRODUCTION Peter Shaffer and His Time Choice of The Royal Hunt of the Sun, Equus, and Amadeus...9 I.3 Character Conflicts in The Royal Hunt of the Sun, Equus, and Amadeus I.4 Sources of the Plays...19 I.5 The Plays and Their Historical Settings THE ROYAL HUNT OF THE SUN EQUUS AMADEUS CONCLUSION WORKS CITED...75
8 1 1. INTRODUCTION In this thesis, the issue of conflict will be analyzed in different perspectives within Peter Shaffer s The Royal Hunt of the Sun, Equus, and Amadeus. The aim is to examine the universality of conflict that can be found in any time and place. This conflict is important as it leads the characters to self-realization. Shaffer, moreover, portrays that self-realization could bring destruction. When Peter Shaffer s plays are considered, it is evident that he creates and orchestrates conflicts between his central characters. The relations between man and man, man and God, or man and institutions lead to conflicts in the characters that Shaffer put at the core of his plays. Chris Chan reflects a common characteristic of Shaffer s plays in saying that they are intense dramas about conflicts between two very different men (2003). The conflicts of the characters can sometimes be destructive as we see in the plays The Royal Hunt of the Sun, Equus, and Amadeus. In these three plays, Shaffer uses character pairs with opposite natures and displays how the relation between the two protagonists evolves gradually. In The Royal Hunt of the Sun, Equus, and Amadeus, there are two prominent characters who lead the play. Furthermore, these two prominent characters emerge representing different ways of living, perceptions and understanding, but they, at the same time, complete each other. Although they have opposite natures and they represent the dualities such as logic-passion, love-hate, genius-mediocre and normality and abnormality, these characters combine a feeling of wholeness when they come together. These characters are in conflict with either themselves or the outer forces like another person, country, society or institutions. More importantly, the rational character s meeting with the passionate one paves the way to conflict between the characters. Their meeting also gives birth to new awareness and conflicts, especially in the rational character. In his article entitled When
9 2 Playwrights Talk to God: Peter Shaffer and the Legacy of O Neill, Michael Hinden points out this similarity in the plays The Royal Hunt, Equus and Amadeus: It is true that in Amadeus, Shaffer repeats the pattern of much of his earlier work in which a male protagonist is motivated by jealousy to strike out against his adversary (The Private Ear, The White Liars, The Royal Hunt of the Sun). It is true, moreover, that the play borrows the central relationship of Equus, pitting a socially prominent middle-aged man against an inspired youth-almost a demon- whose gifts shake the protagonist s faith in himself and his career.(57) In The Royal Hunt of the Sun, Shaffer s pair consists of the protagonists named Pizarro and Athauallpa. Pizarro, is a character, who clashes with his country Spain and its institutions, is a commander in a search for the meaning that would give him a desire to live. His meeting with the passionate character, Athauallpa, the spiritual leader of the Incan Empire, leads to both the feeling of fulfillment and new conflicts to be solved. In the second play, Equus, Dr. Dysart, a child psychiatrist who has lost his passion, seems to be the rational character. Dysart realizes what his problem is after his first meeting with the passionate character, Alan. As it is the case in The Royal Hunt, when the rational and the passionate characters come together, new conflicts emerge, and the characters are negatively affected by these conflicts. In the third play, Amadeus, the characters are taken from history, though they have been recreated by Shaffer. The Court Composer Salieri, who has devoted his whole life to become a well-known musician, is the logical character. Salieri s plan to actualize his dream is spoiled with the appearance of Mozart, the passionate character. Mozart pushes Salieri into several conflicts. Salieri s belief in God falls into pieces after witnessing Mozart s talent. Moreover, the bitter truth about his average capability in music becomes more palpable after Mozart drives Salieri mad. Benedict Nightingale who has written a review of Shaffer s play, Yonadab, makes a relationship with the plays The Royal Hunt, Equus and Amadeus:
10 3 Emotionally, Yonadab is kin to Salieri, to the psychiatrist Dysart in Equus, to the conquistador Pizarro in Royal Hunt. He is the envious outsider, watching and seeking to control others he feels to be in some way more gifted, more blessed, more central to the workings of an unjust universe.(1985) Although each play takes place in a different time, culture, and country, the characters struggle with conflicts that make them feel crippled. The Royal Hunt of the Sun reflects the sixteenth century representing two clashing cultures: Capitalist Spain and communist Incan Empire. Through this play, Shaffer takes his audience on a journey in time to the sixteenth century. The character suffering a conflict in the play is Pizarro. He cannot construct a peaceful relationship with his country and its fundamental organizations. Moreover, Pizarro cannot find any trace of intimacy in Christianity-the standard religion of the country. The conflict that Pizarro has with himself and the powers that surround him is enhanced when he goes to Peru to conquer the Incan Empire. His meeting with Athauallpa makes him taste what real worship is and he is greatly influenced when he witnesses how the Incan people worship their leader. The second play, Equus takes place in England, in the second half of the twentieth century. The alienated individual of the modern times is revealed through the Psychiatrist Dysart. Although his profession gives him the role of curing young people with abnormal psychology, Dysart starts to question the concept of normality and doubt the healing power of his profession. After a while, he feels suffocated under the burden of his normalizing mission. The conflict between rationality and passion is given through the perspective of Dysart. In Amadeus, on the other hand, eighteenth century Vienna is presented by Shaffer. The conflicts that the characters go through do not display sharp differences from the ones which have been experienced in the previous plays. The representative of rationality, Salieri fights against his own mediocrity beside Mozart s genious. Salieri s battle with God also plays a dominant role within the plot. The Royal Hunt of the Sun, Equus, and Amadeus take the conflicting characters as their focal point. These pairs belong to different times and places. However, in spite of the variety of the eras and the lands,
11 4 the characters experience similar kinds of conflicts, which create the possibility of mentioning the universality regarding the conflict. Also, the effects of the conflicts are significant in these plays as they may give way to self-realization. If the three plays are considered, it can be observed that the characters who are in conflict with outer and internal powers, reach a selfrealization. Pizarro becomes aware of what he has been searching for in terms of belief. Dysart understands what creates dissatisfaction in him: lack of passion. Salieri confronts his mediocre limits, which prevent him from being an adored musician when he hears Mozart s music. To put it in other words, conflict can lead to selfrealization within the characters. However, self-realization led by conflicts could be destructive. The characters in these three plays end up with ruin. Athauallpa is killed at the end of the The Royal Hunt of the Sun, which leads to the death of hope in Pizarro. In Equus, by continuing his normalizing mission, Dysart feels as the murderer of Alan, since he has to sacrifice the passion in the young individual to turn him into a normal one. Amadeus involves the death of the two central characters since Mozart is assassinated by Salieri and the latter commits suicide at the end. At this point, it must be highlighted that worship and its vital significance for human beings are emphasized within the three plays. These three plays reflect Shaffer s own understanding of worship. Shaffer believes that worship is normal for human nature. He does not think that institutionalized religions could satisfy the spiritual hunger in human beings since people have a tendency to misuse the impact of the these religions. Thus, more primitive religions could be a more satisfactory answer for humans, or the individuals should create their own belief systems. Daniel R. Jones explains Shaffer s approach to worship in the article Peter Shaffer s Continued Quest for God in Amadeus as follows: All three protagonists symbolize what Shaffer believes is man s primordial need for worship, that purity of faith which is not tainted like the faith of the Catholic priests Valverde and De Nizza in The
12 5 Royal Hunt of the Sun, the faith of Alan s mother, Dora, in Equus, and the faith of Salieri in Amadeus. In their God-hunting, Pizarro, Dysart, and Salieri are drawn to these more fundamental expressions of worship as demonstrated in Athauallpa, Alan, and Mozart, respectively. Shaffer captures the greatness of man s spiritual awareness through the youthfulness of these three characters and through the ancient religious symbols of the sun in The Royal Hunt of the Sun, the horse in Equus, and music in Amadeus.(151) In The Royal Hunt of the Sun, Christianity cannot meet Pizarro s expectations as a religion. However, Athauallpa s unquestioning position towards his belief and the Incan s people s worshipping him influences Pizarro very much. The Spanish commander finds Athauallpa s religion closer to the human spirit and it becomes his hope for a more meaningful life. In Equus, Dysart cannot be content with Christianity. He admires Alan s passionate worship of the god that he created for himself without depending on Christianity. Alan worships Equus, the horse that is sacred for him; and there is nothing that Alan cannot do for his god. On the other hand, Dysart can only keep his interest for the ancient Greek mythology and its gods as a hobby; he cannot integrate it into his life. For that reason, when the doctor observes Alan s worship, he cannot help becoming jealous of him. In Amadeus, music is the center of worship as Salieri finds something divine in it. Music makes Salieri feel the existence of God, and he devotes his whole life to becoming a world famous musician. For his love of music, he ruins Mozart s life. In The Royal Hunt of the Sun, Equus, and Amadeus, Shaffer portrays conflicting characters. Although each play reflects another time and country, the characters undergo similar conflicts that indicate the universality of conflict. Besides, experiencing conflicts lead to a self-realization within the character. The self-realization that is reached, however, could be destructive for the life of the character.
13 6 1.1 Peter Shaffer and His Time Peter Shaffer was born in 1926 as the son of a Jewish family living in Liverpool. Shaffer had two brothers one of which is his twin. The family moved from one place to another between 1936 and 1942, and eventually moved to London. In London, young Shaffer attended St. Paul s School. From 1944 to 1947, he worked in coal mines together with his brother Anthony as a result of a program named Bevin Boys 1 that was employed by British government during wartime. After ending this national mission, Shaffer attended Trinity College, Cambridge University on a scholarship and he graduated with a degree in history. While he was a student, Shaffer edited a magazine, which can be counted as the first serious experience of his later career. To be able to find better publishing opportunities, he went to New York; however, as the facilities in New York were not greater than London, he started to work as a salesperson for the bookstores in Manhattan. Since he did not find being a salesperson satisfactory, he found a position in the New York Library. Until 1954, Shaffer continued working in the library, but then he moved back to London and became involved in a company dealing with music publishing. Later, he became a literary critic for Truth (Klein, 1-4). At the very beginning of his career, Shaffer produced three detective novels. The first novel he wrote was his own work, but the others were created and written with his brother Anthony. Also, it is interesting to point out that this first novel that Shaffer wrote on his own entitled The Woman in the Wardrobe (1951) carried the fictitious name of Peter Antony that is the combination of the first names of his brother and himself. We can interpret Shaffer s using the two names as a later reference to the close relationship between the two main characters taking at the heart of these three plays. This issue will be considered in a more detailed way in the 1 Bevin Boys: During the Second World War, the politician named Ernest Bevin realized a program that assigned the young British men with a compulsory service in the coalmines. (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/bevin_boys)
14 7 next section. After writing plays for radio and television, Shaffer focused on playwriting and started his career of successful plays. Throughout his writing process, Shaffer kept on searching for the most suitable ways of expression that will be parallel to his ideal theatre form, and as he had seen the theatre as a means of psychoanalytically exploring sociological, philosophical, and metaphysical ideas (Plunka, 40), and his expression style is exposed to some transformations. At the beginning of his writing career, Shaffer produced plays in a naturalistic form. However, in time, as a result of his search, he became closer to Brechtian or Artaudian dramatic expression that will overlap with his perception of drama. For instance, while The Royal Hunt of the Sun involved some Brechtian qualities like the alienation effect, Equus reflected the total theatre of Antonin Artaud that enables the audience to have a journey to his/her inner side. Also, with the stage techniques he used including rituals and masks, Shaffer displayed the Artaudian influences in his drama. Despite these influences, Shaffer s play still shows originality. According to John Russell Taylor as he stated in his book entitled The Angry Theatre: New British Drama, his work has all the classic qualities of the traditional dramatist -cast-iron construction, a coherent and wellplotted story to tell, solid, realistic characterization, extreme fluency in the composition of lively, speakable, exactly placed dialogue -- but ultimately he emerges in it as mysterious and impalpable (227). He has written psychological and historical plays as well as a farce and a domestic tragedy. Shaffer has also written scripts for both radio and television as well as a pantomime. Shaffer s large range of plays that involve different theatrical forms and themes triggering philosophical questions create the difficulty of putting his name under a specific movement. C.J. Gianakaris comments on this difficulty: Shaffer remains a puzzle today, particularly for critics and academic scholars. A moving target with respect to dramatic styles and thematic interests, he is difficult to categorize within tidy literary designations. Is he a primarily a realist probing the psychological and social issues facing the modern age? Is he a somber metaphysician
15 8 seeking answers to universal enigmas? Or is he a teasing farceur who targets mundane human follies?(3) It is also important that Shaffer is a playwright who witnessed not only the Second World War but also the changing world when the war ended. The trust felt by the people for the government had been broken since the war caused the problems that were hard to repair. Thus, values that have been imposed by the governmental authority started to disintegrate after World War II. The unrest within the country that can be expressed as a postwar trauma pushed the people in search of alternative way of livings. Many people started to question the existence of the institutions. Shaffer wrote his plays in a post war world and naturally he could not be free from the social, economic and political changes that happened around him. He directly or indirectly referred to the recent happenings in his plays in terms of themes. In an interview Shaffer expresses the war time recalling: the Second World War, which, remember, broke out for English people much earlier than it did for Americans, because you went to war around yes, around Pearl Harbor time. That was We our war began September the 3 rd 1939, with the invasion of Poland by Germany, and thereafter the great state of danger in England at that time, with the bombings, necessitated the evacuation of children. We were evacuated, and I spent my childhood thereafter in many places, many towns in England. I think we moved about eight times during the war, until we became Bevin boys. Prior to that my childhood was spent very uneventfully in the city of Liverpool, which I doubt if I would recognize anymore; it was heavily bombed during the war, and it s been completely rebuilt, no doubt in the usual hideous manner that cities in England are have been rebuilt.(shaffer qtd. in Wood)
16 9 1.2 Choice of The Royal Hunt of the Sun, Equus, and Amadeus The Royal Hunt of the Sun, Equus, and Amadeus have a great significance in Shaffer s career as a playwright. The awards that were given to Shaffer for these plays can also be perceived as the evidence of their success. While Equus was awarded the Tony Award (1975) and the Drama Critics Awards, Amadeus received the Evening Standard and London Drama Critics Award together with Tony Award (1981) one more time (Klein, 3). The success of the plays was beyond not only the boundaries of Britain but also the theatrical stage since each play embraced the audience in the movie halls with their filmed versions. Moreover, with the screenplay of Amadeus, Shaffer won the Academy awards (Oscar) for the best screenplay adapted from another medium (Klein, 3) in Moreover, The Royal Hunt of the Sun was also performed as an opera in Iain Hamilton who staged The Royal Hunt of the Sun as an opera comments on how he was influenced by the play; besides, tells about his decision of creating it as an opera performance in his article The Royal Hunt of the Sun : The play attracted me as have all the subjects I have chosen for my operas- because of its conflicts between personal relationships and aspects of public life, such as power and ambition, these manifested especially through such channels as politics, revolution and war. I interpreted the play as a collision between two great empires, the ancient empire of the Incas of Peru and the more recent and mighty empire of Spain, in the 16 th century. These are symbolized by Athauallpa, the Inca sovereign, and Pizarro, commander of the Spanish expedition. (23). More importantly, since Amadeus, Equus and The Royal Hunt of the Sun are rich in terms of conflicts, and as they present similarity in protagonists, they are effective in the development of this thesis. Each play involves two central characters who represent different personalities, psychologies and perspectives. While the character who is defined as the primitive (Plunka, 28) emerges as the one free from the oppression of the social norms and rules, the other shows a passive existence with
17 10 the imposed values of institutions like family, society or country. In three plays, the primitive one raises a type of awareness in the other protagonist about the pretentiousness of his life: Almost all of the Shaffer s plays present a dialect between a threatened, often isolated, individual trapped in a world of roles and codified behavior and his alter ego, an independent person who is not controlled by the desires and wishes of others. These alter egos or foils for the protagonist Walter Langer, Julian Cristoforue, Athauallpa, Mark Askelon, Alan Strang, and Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, to name a few are often seen as primitives who create their own microcosms and answer to no one but themselves. They may be primitive and unsocialized by society s standards, but they definitely have a strong sense of identity and can think and act for themselves without relying on the acceptance and sanctions of others. These independent individuals teach Shaffer s misguided protagonists that they are living in a phony and artificial world. (Plunka, 28) The intense tendency in examining and using such duality of characters may arouse a feeling of curiosity in the audience or the reader that makes him or her ask whether Shaffer experienced such a thing. It is interesting that, when we read Shaffer s biography, the dilemmas he encountered when he was young, and the similar situations he underwent help us to suggest a parallelism between his real life and the characters he portrayed. Gene A Plunka summarizes it with the words stated below in his article titled Know Thyself: Integrity and Self-Awareness in the Early Plays of Peter Shaffer : The young Shaffer was cowed into accepting the popular stance that business represented reality and art was merely pretense. Despite such dubious advice from family and friends, Shaffer made the leap from business lackey to successful playwright by ignoring egregious counsel while being true to his own needs and desires. This concept of the divided self, which unfolds into the dialect between the Apollonian and Dionysian in later plays, reflects the tension that is at the core of Shaffer s
18 11 first three plays: Five Finger Exercise, The Private Ear, and The Public Eye. (Plunka in Gianakaris, 57) A similar opinion is stated by Madeline MacMurragh-Kavanagh, in her book entitled Peter Shaffer:Theatre and Drama. Kavanagh analyzes the conflict Shaffer lived with his father who did not believe in the professionalism of a career obtained through writing. The father thinks that Shaffer should choose a job, which cannot be counted as a spare time activity because he sees writing as something to be done in free time. This influence of his father also reminds us of the strong father figures in the plays of Amadeus and Equus: One problem that Shaffer had to overcome in deciding on a life as a dramatist was the idea he had absorbed from his father that work involved a serious profession while writing constituted something of a hobby. In one interview, he notes that my father regarded writing as a leisure time activity, not central to life and not a profession : as a result, as he told Brian Connel, I denied myself the pleasure of writing plays for a very long time. Though nowhere in any interview does Shaffer express resentment about his father s attitude, the regular appearance in his plays of domineering fathers who attempt to impose their own visions on sensitive, easy-bullied sons (in characters including Stanley Harrington, Frank Strang and Leopold Mozart) perhaps has its genesis here.(5 ) As an interesting point, Shaffer s having a twin brother can make us ask whether Shaffer experienced from his inner personal experiences or dualities that he lived with his own twin throughout his youth. It may not be appropriate to say that Shaffer s motivation in focusing on the opposite characters finding themselves in each other and getting confused with the feelings of both admiration and loathing lies behind the fact of having a twin brother; however, this can be considered as an interesting fact that shows parallelism with his own life. In Equus Dysart and Alan, in Amadeus Salieri and Mozart, and in The Royal Hunt of the Sun Pizarro and
19 12 Athauallpa might be carrying some traces from the past of Peter and Anthony Shaffer. Perhaps intensely focusing on the two male characters who are involved in a kind of rivalry, Shaffer may have revealed the experience that he had with his twin. His other half, Anthony Shaffer, is also an author who is famous for his play Sleuth. Psychiatrist Jules Glenn has made a detailed survey on the plays of the Shaffers and their twinship. He suggests that having a twin may have contributed to the creativity of these authors, especially in terms of creating characters who have twin-like qualities although they are not actually twins in the physical sense. Glenn states in his article Anthony and Peter Shaffer s Plays: The Influence of Twinship on Creativity that he demonstrated that the protagonists of many plays by the twin playwrights, Anthony and Peter Shaffer, manifest the personality characteristics of twins, even though these characters are not manifestly twins (270). While making his analysis, Glenn mentions the common tendencies and attitudes that can be observed in twins like intense rivalry, identification with the other, and desire of revenge toward mother and the sibling. However, the point that Glenn emphasizes very much is, in fact, his strongest starting point regarding the Shaffers and their twin-like characters: Finally, a twin often imagines not only that his sibling is a near duplicate of himself; through displacement and projection, he also pictures the world as populated with people almost identical with himself. This can become the basis for the creation of twin-like characters in the plays (271) The conflict between the rational and passionate characters in Shaffer s plays also reflects the fragmented structure in Shaffer s own personality which he tries to fix. The author explains that division he reflected via his characters actually originates from the conflicts that he goes through; this makes us understand the strong link between the author and the plays: There is in me a continuous tension between what I suppose I could loosely call the Apollonian and the
20 13 Dionysiac sides of interpreting life, between, say, Dysart and Alan Strang I just feel in myself that there is a constant debate going on between the violence of instinct on the one hand and the desire in my mind for order and restraint. Between the secular side of me the fact that I have never actually been able to buy anything of official religion and the inescapable fact that to me life without a sense of the divine is perfectly meaningless.(shaffer qtd in Klein, 235) The final reason behind my choosing these three plays stems from their interesting stories which have been told powerfully by Peter Shaffer. Each play takes us to a different time in which we share the lives of the characters and Shaffer is always successful in arousing and sustaining the curiosity of the audience/reader. His narrative skills are appreciated by critics as well as the audiences. MacMurraugh- Kavanagh speaks of Shaffer s audience-pleasing accomplishment: the ability to weave a compelling story. Shaffer is an undisputed master of telling tales, forcing the audience into involvement with his dramas through detectivestory suspense, human identification, and the presentation of complex conflicts.( 2) 1.3 Character Conflicts in The Royal Hunt of the Sun, Equus, and Amadeus If the theatre creates a complete and living world centered on human beings, then conflict must be part of drama, for life includes conflict. Debra Bruch Conflict is not only an ordinary part of human life but also is one of the main components of a literary product. In a play, novel, or short story, the characters are frequently surrounded by various conflicts. Conflict contributes a lot to a literary
Chapter 3: The Play The Play is: Starting point for theatrical production Entity that remains intact after production Blueprint for production or for reader s imagination The play may serve as the basis
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