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Theater of the Absurd and the Great MacGuffin!

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Theater of the Absurd and the Great MacGuffin! Empty Theater of the Absurd and the Great MacGuffin!

Post  Elyssia Primus on October 17th 2008, 8:30 am


From Wikipedia:
A MacGuffin (sometimes McGuffin) is a plot device that motivates the characters or advances the story, but the details of which are of little or no importance otherwise.
My Understanding:
A MacGuffin is an object that dives the story forward because of the effect it has on the characters, rather than because of what the object actually is.

The term MacGuffin was created by Alfred Hitchcock. Hitchcock explained how he got the word "MacGuffin" through an old Scottish joke. It is generally believed that Hitchcock made the term, and joke, up himself.

The Joke:
One man says, 'What's that package up there in the baggage rack?' And the other answers, 'Oh that's a McGuffin.' The first one asks, 'What's a McGuffin?' 'Well,' the other man says, 'It's an apparatus for trapping lions in the Scottish Highlands.' The first man says, 'But there are no lions in the Scottish Highlands,' and the other one answers 'Well, then that's no McGuffin!'

Many movies and books are based around MacGuffins. The MacGuffin is the motivation behind many of Hitcock's films, in the 39 Steps it is the design that everyone is looking for. Hitcock said "In crook stories it is almost always the necklace and in spy stories it is most always the papers."

  • The maltese falcon

  • The one ring

  • R2D2

  • The green destiny sword

  • Whatever Indiana Jones happens to be looking for at the time.

Theater of the Absurd and the Great MacGuffin! 17191__lotr_lTheater of the Absurd and the Great MacGuffin! MalteseFalcon-sm

Theater of the Absurd

From Wikipedia:The Theatre of the Absurd (French: Théâtre de l'Absurde) is a designation for particular plays written by a number of primarily European playwrights in the late 1940s, 1950s, and 1960s, as well as to the style of theatre which has evolved from their work.
My Understanding:
Theater of the Absurd is a form of drama examines the ramafications of a human's inability to make effective decisions in their life, they are held captive by absurdity, or meaninglessness. The definition of Theater of the Absurd is not really set, and is widely disputed.

Theater of the Absurd comes from the same school of thought of existentialism and is related to the writings of Albert Camus. Theater of the Absurd has roots in dadaism. The term was created by Martin Esslin who wrote a book with the term as its title.

Theater of the Absurb is characterised by interesting word play, nonssense, cliches, missunderstandings and a break down of logic. It concentrates on what happens to a person when they know that their life is meaningless, and they cannot do anything about it. Often, in Theater of the Absurd, there often important things missings, such as an antagonist that never shows up, or Godot. There are a lot of ellipses used in Theater of the Absurd because the dialoge is unimportant if life is meaningless. There are two types of main characters found in Theater of the absurd, the character who is distressed by the meaninglessness of their life, and the one who is not. Secondary characters are generally flat characters like those found in comedia dell'arte.

  • Waiting for Godot

  • Rosencrantz and Guilderstern Are Dead

  • The Birthday Party

  • Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf?

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Elyssia Primus
Robert Frost

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Join date : 2008-09-11

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