Henrik Ibsen - Ghosts

What a beautifully twisted story. The lives of these 5 people (and one deceased, but ever-present Captain) are intermingled far beyond their knowledge at the start of the play, with the exception of Mrs Alving. This woman's deception, to achieve control and maintain status, tears apart those around her intellectually and physically, until they have all reached a point of despair. Osvald is physically and mentally ill, but for reasons he does not understand. This echoed strongly of the curses on a family we see in Greek tragedy....however Ibsen's searing criticism is that these curses originate in someone who lies with all their power to maintain a veneer of propriety.

This would be a really interesting play to tear apart and re-imagine. The matriarch Mrs Alving, although we initially feel for her situation, eventually becomes villainous as the information unfolds. These characters cannot be fulfilled; they are devoid of all hope and joy of life.

This also called to memory Kierkegaard's night of infinte reservation....the orphanage burning through the night is a test of faith, which these characters ultimately fail.

image: Edvard Munch - Two Women On The Shore