I think there is no world without theatre.
If you engage people on a vital, important level, they will respond
In the end I think theatre has only one subject: justice
All you now do is pursue your private objectives within society. Instead of us being a community, everybody is asked to seek their own personal ends. It's called competition. And competition is antagonism.
I write about violence as naturally as Jane Austen wrote about manners. Violence shapes and obsesses our society, and if we do not stop being violent we have no future.
Our lives are awkward and fragile and we have only one thing to keep us sane: pity, and the man without pity is mad.
It's politely assumed that democracy is a means of containing and restraining violence. But violence comes not from genes but from ideas
We may seem competent, but by the end of next century there will be new deserts, new ruins.
The human mind is a dramatic structure in itself and our society is absolutely saturated with drama
Humanity's become a product and when humanity is a product, you get Auschwitz and you get Chair.
As Shakespeare himself knew, the peace, the reconciliation that he created on the stage would not last an hour on the street.
Art is the expression of the conviction that we can have a rational relationship with the world and each other. It isn't the faith or hope that we can, it is the demonstration that we can.
In the past goodness was always a collective experience. Then goodness became privatised.
I don't think it's the job of theatre at the moment to provide political propaganda; that would be simplistic. We have to explore our situation further before we will understand it.
But we are not in the world to be good but to change it.
The one overall structure in my plays is language
I'm not interested in an imaginary world
What I try to do in a play is put a problem on stage, head-on, without evasion.
At the turn of the century theatre does not have to be prescriptive.
We are still living in the aftershock of Hiroshima, people are still the scars of history.
The English sent all their bores abroad, and acquired the Empire as a punishment.
Our unconscious is not more animal than our conscious, it is often even more human
Fifteen years ago I walked out of a production of one of my plays at the RSC because I decided it was a waste of time.
I'm interested in the real world.
I write plays not to make money, but to stop myself from going mad. Because it's my way of making the world rational to me.
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