In an essay of no more than 2000 words, discuss the effect of absence and presence in Brian Friel's play Dancing at Lughnasa.
In Preparing your answer, you should re-read Dancing at Lughnasa along with the introduction to Part 2 and Chapter 7 of The Twentieth Century. You will find much relevant material in the discussion about the role of memory, history and the conventions of realism. The theme of migration provides a further way of exploring ideas about absence and presence.
At the risk of stating the obvious, this is a drama text, so consideration of performance will be important for your essay. Remember that you have been asked to discuss the 'dramatic Impact ". Anita Pacheco's discussion of performance issues (pp. 262-6) provides useful examples of how this can be done successfully: by basing ideas on the language of the play, and on the detailed stage directions.
Remember that you will need to find your own examples from the play to illustrate your answer. Essays that simply repeat or develop fail to develop ideas that Gupta presents will not gain the best marks. It is essential that you support your argument with evidence from the text. The examples you choose will help you to develop your arguments, and most importantly will ground any generalisations you may make firmly in Friel's work. You might also find it helpful to refer to the 'Skills tutorial: drama'.
All assignment should by submited via class safe assign or TurnitIn account. Thank you
Brian Friel's Dancing At Lughnasa
Length: 7 pages (2000 Words)
Set in the small village of Ballybeg in Ireland, Dancing at Lughnasa is one of the best classic memory play which was told by the author from the perspective of the adult Michael. The author vividly recalls the dismal days when he spent at his aunt's home while he was seven years old. Just a few kilometers away from the small town, there were five Mundy sisters, who were all unmarried living together in one cottage. The eldest daughter, Kate was a professional teacher. Rose and Agnes would work together knitting gloves and ensure that the house was in order particularly on issues such as house chores, cooking, and washing of the family's clothes. Christine (who is Michael's mother) had no any streams of income at all and would rely on the rest of family members to achieve the basic commodities. The older brother of the sisters, Jack, had just returned from the Uganda. He was a devoted Christian, and he worked in Uganda as a Catholic priest. Having worked for 25 years during the time of colonialism, his missionary work has taught him a lot of things, recounting the tales of what people in Uganda goes through.
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