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Compare ways in which Friel and Greig dramatically establish the worlds of Translations and Dunsinane.
It is is clear to see the links between both Translations and Dunsinane through the vicarious invasion of nations. In Translations one sees an Irish writer showing English forces in Ireland. In Dunsinane one sees a Scottish writer showing English forces in Scotland. In both texts we see the dramatic establishment of both worlds in Ireland and Scotland yet this is done in very different styles and I will be exploring and comparing the ways in which both Friel and Greig manage to establish these worlds throughout their texts. First and foremost both writers establish the physical world immediately. Comparing the two, it is easy to see the differences. In Translations, the very first stage direction says “a cart-wheel, some lobster pots, farming tools, a battle of hay, a churn, etc”1.This conveys a sense of attractiveness and rurality. It is simple and of an agricultural nature. This is the first indication of Friel establishing the world of Translations. When one then takes a look at the opening of Dunsinane it becomes apparent how different both writers are dramatically establishing their worlds. Greig creates a cold and dark atmosphere on the opening page. As stated by Dominic Cavendish in his critique of the play the audience gets the sense of a “harsh, soul-sapping landscape outside”2. This comment relates not only to the majority of the play but to the very opening lines of the play. The stage directions used in Dunsinane are quite literally used for the opposite intention compared to Translations. Friel uses stage directions to set the scene and establish the surroundings of the stage yet Greig leaves it very much to the production team to use a bare minimal stage and instead allow the dialogue to establish the world of Dunsinane. The opening stage directions of Dunsinane are “Dawn. Rain”3. The use of these monosyllabic words compared to the long…

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