Playing With Violence
Scenes of Violence in Contemporary Turkish Drama
This book investigates the subtly drawn dimensions of the theme of violence in contemporary Turkish drama.The plays analyzed give us characters caught in the cul-de-sac of a culture that demands conformity. They are unable to say “No”, and their gravest problem is the impossibility of existing as an individual. These plays deal with the most insidious and widespread forms of covert social violence. Ten plays by six writers are discussed:

Önemli Adam (An İmportant Man)
Müfettişler (The Inspectors)
Kahvede Şenlik Var (There's a party at the Coffeehouse)
Ölüler Konuşmak İsterler (The Dead Will Speak)
Kozalar (Cocoons)
Taziye (Mourning Rites)
Mahmud ile Yezida (Mahmud and Yezida)
Çöplük (Garbage Dump)
Sahibinin Sesi (His Master’s Voice)
İşte Baş İşte Gövde İşte Kanatlar, (Here is the Head, Here is the Trunk, Here are the Wings)

1. The nature of the initial contact established with the audience is determined by the first scene
2. Space reveals itself only in partnership with time
2.1 “Public open space”: Exterior spaces
2.2 Sites of “Daily circular time”: Homes
3. Confinement, constriction, and violence
4. Socially legitimate violence and the struggle to be an individual
5. Surrendering to violence
5.1 To close in on oneself and postpone hopes and dreams once again
An Important Man
The Inspectors
5.2 Unconscious surrender; conformity to the established order, or the struggle to find a niche
5.2.1 Linguistic assimilation goes along with social assimilation
There’s a Party at the Coffeehouse
The Dead Will Speak
5.2.2 The characters in There’s a Party at the Coffeehouse and The Dead Will Speak spring from the same mold.
Cocoons .
5.2.3 Insulating oneself from the violence outside does not make one safe inside
6. Answering violence with violence
6.1 Death is a way of self-realization and the victim kills while dying
Mourning Rites, Mahmud and Yezida
Garbage Dump
6.2 Sevim Burak’s plays nurse an explosive rage concealed in chatter
His Master’s Voice
Here is the Head, Here is the Trunk, Here are the Wings
7. Dream and Reality spawn, affirm, and influence one another
8. Children are usually part of identity and are connected with death
9. The body is transformed into a space of violence
10. Violence is made aural and visual
11. To the audience the last word

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    Mitos-Boyut Yayınları, İstanbul