chapter  3
26 Pages

Lifting the Smokescreen: The Language of Conversation in Harold Pinter’s The Homecoming

While Pinter is a favourite playwright among linguists interested in discourse stylistics and drama, his third full-length play The Homecoming, considered by many to be his masterpiece (Armstrong 1999: 39-40), has not received much stylistic attention. First performed at London’s Aldwych Theatre in 1965, this play affords us several often disturbing glimpses into the lives of a north London family. Teddy, a philosophy professor, and his wife, Ruth, return to London to visit Teddy’s family, his father (Max), his uncle (Sam), and his two brothers (Lenny and Joey). During the course of the play, Ruth decides to leave Teddy and stay with his family, accepting their proposal that she support both them and herself through prostitution.