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Last Updated September 5, 2023.

This play demonstrates Kushner's power of expression, most noticeably in the first section titled Homebody (quotations taken from the TCG revised edition). The Homebody muses in the first moments over a travelogue referencing Kabul's history. Sitting in her British middle-class home, she ponders objects "adorned, adored" that were believed "to be the favored nesting place of a certain animus or anima" (10). This leads to her claim that

"magic beliefs are immensely strong, I think, only if their essential fragility is respected. It's a paradox. If such beliefs, magic beliefs, are untouched, they endure . . . All must be touched. All touch corrupts." (10-11)

This paradox suggests that touch, or human investigation into them, destroys belief, an idea taken up in the Kabul section of the play after Homebody goes missing in Afghanistan and her family seeks to find her.

Homebody continues her reverie in language distinct to her, filled with repetitions and ellipsis that reflect a mind formed by reading of exotic lands rather than tangible experience:

"Oh I love the world! I love love love love the world!" (12).

"I speak . . . I can't help myself. Elliptically. Discursively. I've read too many books, and that's not boasting . . . My parents don't speak like this; no one I know does; no one does. It's an alien influence, and my borders have only ever been broached by books." (12-13)

Her language, overrun with erudition, belongs to no one ad is not naturally her own. This will in some ways reflect the foreignness of Kabul, an ancient city that has been taken over too many times by alien influences.

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