Friday, January 07, 2011

Hoopsa, boyaboy, hoopsa (thrice)

I'm sure Tom Stoppard has been amply punished by the academics for the glittering of his language. You cannot fundamentally be a serious writer if your text is madly funny and witty, and if you time comic dialogue like an angel. That's unserious. I am currently re-reading Arcadia - have seen it only once, a very polished Gate Theatre performance in Dublin - and it never ceases to amaze how well someone can write. Stoppardian wit, seriousness and language correspond very closely with my own esthetic ideals - it's very liberal art, very liberal concerns. It's not all there is, naturally, but through his skill, through his language Stoppard surpasses such limitations, and easily, effortlessly approaches universality. That is how it should be done. And there's a deadly seriousness in it.

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