Bond, Edward

Tagged: Author

(1934-    ) UK playwright, active from the late 1950s, notable for his excoriations – both in terms of discourse and through the extreme violence of many of his plays – of the British class system, of the Politics that supports it, and (from a Marxist perspective) of the late capitalism that makes its continuance possible; it may not be adventitious that his first West End premiere came only half a century after his produced play. Some of his early work suffered from the conspicuously slanted application of government censorship of staged performances as per the Theatres Act of 1843 (only erased from the books in 1968). Of his many dramas, many edge into rhetorical gestures towards Fantastika; the Dystopia created by a paranoid monarch in Lear (performed 1971; 1972 chap), for instance, is physically defined by no more than an impenetrable wall, reduced to irrelevance by the later blinding of the deposed ruler.

Bond is of more direct sf interest for his War Plays sequence comprising The War Plays / 1/2: Red Black and Ignorant; The Tin Can People (#1 performed 1984, #2 performed 1985; omni 1985), plus The War Plays: A Trilogy: Pt 3: Great Peace (performed 1985; 1985 chap), the first two plays depicting Post-Holocaust life after the end of World War Three as brutal and hopeless, the third seeming to offer, perhaps rather gingerly, some hope for communitarian life, in small enclaves. A further play, The Crime of the Twenty-First Century (1999 chap; performed 2001), reiterates, against an abstractly devastated Near Future background, a similar strongly expressed jeremiad. The late Chair Trilogy [for details see Checklist below] depicts Dystopian Near Future Britain with an emphasis on the barren Cities.[JC]

Edward Bond

born London: 18 July 1934

died

works (highly selected)

series

War Plays

The Chair Plays

  • The Chair Plays: Have I None; The Under Room and Chair (London: Bloomsbury Methuen Drama, 2012) [omni of the three named plays: for performance details see separate citations below: The Chair Plays: pb/]
    • Have I None (London: Bloomsbury, 2014) [play: ebook: separate issue of the named play above: first performed 2 November 2000 Big Brum Theatre-in-Education Company, Birmingham, England: The Chair Plays: na/]
    • Chair (London: Bloomsbury, 2014) [play: ebook: separate issue of the named play above: Radio play: first broadcast 7 April 2000 BBC Radio 4: first stage performance 2006 Avignon Festival, Avignon, France: The Chair Plays: na/]
    • The Under Room (London: Bloomsbury, 2014) [play: ebook: separate issue of the named play above: first performed 9 October 2005 Big Brum Theatre-in-Education Company, Birmingham, England: The Chair Plays: na/]

individual titles

  • Lear (London: Eyre Methuen, 1972) [play: chap: first performed 29 September 1971 Royal Court Theatre, London: pb/]

links

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