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No Exit and Three Other Plays
No Exit and Three Other Plays
Author: Jean-Paul Sartre
4 plays about an existential portrayal of Hell, the reworking of the Electra-Orestes story, the conflict of a young intellectual torn between theory and conflict and an arresting attack on American racism.
ISBN: 289957
Publication Date: 1949
Pages: 282
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Publisher: Vintage
Book Type: Paperback
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The Flies
Before reading this update of a Greek tragedy you should read, or review, Aeschylus Oresteia and Sophocles Theban plays. The Flies, Sartres interpolation of these ancient works, centers on Orestes return to Argos to avenge the murder of his father, Agememnon: a deed which he fulfills with shocking brutality. The flies symbolize the curse placed on the city for the foul murder of Agememnonall characters, including walk-ons, are surrounded by them. I wonder how this was staged as the flies seem to have a larger role than many of the players. True to Greek form Zeus is omnipresent to instigate havoc on the community by assuming a vacillating role in the act of retribution.

Dirty Hands
Wade through act after act of political innuendo. A revolutionary volunteers to assassinate the leader of one of three totalitarian factions. He fails, sort of. He does waste him in the end but for the wrong reason, and even that isnt right. All this takes six acts and 120 pages. Camus could do it in half that.

No Exit
Welcome to Sartres version of Dantes Hell. The valet, really an unnamed devil, locks three people in a room: two women and a man. How good can it get for this guy? They dont appear to realize that they are dead. They explore one anothers sins. Eventually they realize where they are and that they have become one anothers torturers.

The Respectful Prostitute
Sartre explores racial tension and prejudice. A black, pursued by the Law for attack on a white, hides in a motel room that is being used by a prostitute. Naturally, she attempts to hide him. Why not? Eventually, there is no exit in this one also; she must give him up to the Law.


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