Pinter illustrates the play’s major theme, meaninglessness, in his adroit construction of the play. In the absurd prison world, nothing makes sense. The prisoners, referred to as ‘‘s——houses’’ and ‘‘enemies of the state’’ are being held for unnamed crimes. The narrative suggests that they have been imprisoned because they are ‘‘mountain people’’ who speak an outlawed language. When the officials discover that Charley, Sara’s husband, is not a mountain person, they decide he has been put into the ‘‘wrong batch’’ but do...
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