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Cosi Essay

  • Submitted by: ferrecomedentis
  • on August 8, 2012
  • Category: English
  • Length: 1,194 words

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Below is an essay on "Cosi" from Anti Essays, your source for research papers, essays, and term paper examples.

Lewis Nowra’s play, Cosi is made successful through his use of language forms such as symbolism, dramatic techniques like the use of monologues and key themes such as the nature of madness. The theme of madness is contextually relevant to the time period the play was set in when mental health was a taboo subject and there were turbulent political and social times. The Vietnam War had separated Australian society and the sexual revolution was changing the original ideas of love and fidelity. Nowra’s play is successful because it investigates key issues of the times in an engaging and humorous way to involve the audience in 1970’s Australia.
The burnt out theatre in which the patients perform the play in is symbolic in many ways. The descriptive language at the start of the play help the reader to get a true feeling for the set, the stage setting helps those viewing the play to see the emptiness of the theatre.Firstly in the way that, just like the theatre, the patients are pushed out of mainstream society, they are often forgotten about and are not well received by the wider world. This can be seen for the theatre when Lucy exclaims ‘I can’t believe you are doing a show here’. She is referring to the burnt out theatre, however this also refers to the mental institution. Lucy cannot understand why Lewis would do a play with a bunch of ‘loonies’. The second symbolic part of the theatre is that it becomes a symbol of the patients themselves, each patient has an individual problem that affects their ability to function in society, just as the theatre has problems with its lighting and wiring - ‘oh, oh trouble with the fuse box’. However with determination and commitment both the patients and the theatre perform brilliantly on the night. Henrys toy soldiers are used to symbolise real soldiers throughout the entire play. They serve to reinforce that, while they are rehearsing a play about love and fidelity in the asylum, outside young men are battling in Vietnam. They...

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