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Palgrave Macmillan

The Late Harold Pinter

Political Dramatist, Poet and Activist

  • Book
  • © 2017


  • Examines Pinter's often overlooked work in alternative media, from poetry to speeches
  • Draws extensively on little-accessed archival material to bring further insights into Pinter's creative process
  • Views Pinter's political output through the lens of affect

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About this book

This volume is the first to provide a book-length study of Pinter’s overtly political activity. With chapters on political drama, poetry, and speeches, it charts a consistent tension between aesthetics and politics through Pinter’s later career and defines the politics of the work in terms of a pronounced sensory dimension and capacity to affect audiences. The book brings to light unpublished letters and drafts from the Pinter Archive in the British Library and draws his political poems and speeches, which have previously been overshadowed by his plays, into the foreground. Intended for students, instructors, and researchers in drama and theatre, performance studies, literature, and media studies, this book celebrates Pinter’s later life and work by discerning a coherent political voice and project and by registering the complex ways that project troubles the divide between aesthetics and politics.

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Table of contents (6 chapters)


“This book was very well written, and Chiasson went above and beyond to explain to readers how Pinter’s later works used both affect and aesthetics to convey their messages. … this book would be important to anyone who wants to study politics, poetics, rhetoric, and the media. This could be a particularly good book for a class that is studying media and politics.” (Katy Johnson, CBQ Communication Booknotes Quarterly, Vol. 49 (2), 2018)

Authors and Affiliations

  • University of Leeds, Leeds, United Kingdom

    Basil Chiasson

About the author

Basil Chiasson is Research Fellow at the University of Leeds. He is a member of the AHRC-funded ‘Harold Pinter: Histories and Legacies’ research team. Previous publications include contributions to Modern Drama, The Theatre of Harold Pinter and Harold Pinter's The Dumb Waiter.

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