The Birthday Party

Language and Silence in The Birthday Party 12th Grade

Language in the “Birthday Party” is seen as a major theme of the play, despite its absurd nature. Through the use of language, Pinter creates silences that are monumental to the meaning and overall understanding of the play. With language, Pinter also manages to bridge the gap between his cold silences and the absurd actions of the play. Language is devalued; to the audience its use does not seem correct by our realities social rules and norms. However, it is within this devaluation that Pinter gives language in his play a primary role in bridging silence and action to create a masterpiece of confusion and self-discovery.

Silence in the play is one of the most important aspects of language as used by Pinter. As Martin Esslin suggests, “Communication itself between people is so frightening that rather than do that there is continual cross-talk, a continual talking about other things, rather than the root of their relationship.” In our everyday reality, people hide behind their meaningless conversations and never get to the “root” of what their mind desires to know. In an absolute fear of the nerve-breaking negative connotation of silence, people ramble in their everyday lives so that they never have to be faced with the...

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