A Journey to the Contemporary Past: Edward Bond’s the Fool, Artist Responsibility in Light of Power of Capitalist Marketing and Neoliberalism

Abstract

The concern of this study is how the text is interpreted within a theoretical and critical framework such as Cultural Materialism and to investigate the relationship between literature and history. Cultural Materialism is a model which argues that literary texts are part of a history that is still in the process of being written. In his plays, Bond has constantly turned to crucial periods in the history of the world, to examine the social, ethical and political roots of present situations in order to alter them in the future. This study concerns the tendency in Bond's 'Rational Theatre' to locate texts in a historical and political frame for the interest of its own time and to create a dialectical relationship with historical past. In The Fool, Bond throws a new light on history and a marginalized historical figure: John Clare; he is given a new lease of life to repeat the repetition of past in contemporary; to give emphasis to the modernized victims of Industrialism in the age of Thatcherism and Neoliberalism; to underlie how art is related to politics and artists should take responsibility; and to focus on the alienation of the artist as the consequence of the negative impacts of neo-liberalism. The play is a portrait of an artist who lives in a kind of naïve idealism ignorant of the contradictions emerging out of the ferocious social powers. In this way we can explore The Fool by practicing alternative understanding of the past and highlighting the political changes



Author Information
Babak Ashrafkhani Limoudehi, Guilan University of Medical Sciences, Iran

Paper Information
Conference: ACAH2015
Stream: Humanities - Literature/Literary Studies*

This paper is part of the ACAH2015 Conference Proceedings (View)
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