Diseased Love. Love as a Lie of the Mind in Sam Shepard’s A Lie of the Mind Cover Image
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Chora miłość. Miłość jako kłamstwo umysłu w A Lie of the Mind Sama Sheparda
Diseased Love. Love as a Lie of the Mind in Sam Shepard’s A Lie of the Mind

Author(s): Vesna Bratić
Subject(s): Language and Literature Studies, Studies of Literature, Theory of Literature
Published by: Wydawnictwo Uniwersytetu Śląskiego
Keywords: Sam Shepard; American drama; love; A Lie of the Mind
Summary/Abstract: Drama is not a favourite genre among American critics and it has been so for decades. Misogyny (or what might appear similar to it) has also grown out of fashion, hopefully for good. The combination of the two makes it all the more difficult for an author to “fare well” among the critics. My paper tries to highlight the fact that Sam Shepard, although often perceived as a misogynist for the treatment of his female characters both by his “men” and himself is not (as much) “guilty as charged”. The point I am trying to make is that the playwright did not (always) ignore his female characters and leave them voiceless because it pleased him to do so. He did it because what he understood best about the human condition was male anxiety and neurosis. A Lie of the Mind is his, albeit failed, attempt at understanding the female side and even incorporating it. What the play offers as a conclusion is that love seems to be a mission impossible for the strong and the healthy. It tries to persuade the reader (and this attitude can be found explicit frequently in his plays) that love is a(n) (unnutural) condition, an illness of a sort. Love is a survival mode for the weak. The strong do not need it. On this not very encouraging a note does the play end as well as all Shepard’s further attempts at dealing with women characters in a way different from his usual.

  • Page Range: 151-164
  • Page Count: 14
  • Publication Year: 2017
  • Language: Polish