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Caretaker by Harold Pinter

Caretaker is one of the most prominent plays of its own kind, i.e. the absurd play. It questions the essential beliefs of human beings especially of the modern age. Harold in his influential and disturbing play shows a perfect bleak picture of the modern age. The play has been interpreted through different perspectives, but the most common interpretation of the play is that the play is the critique of the progress and the resultant deterioration of human nature and spirit.

The main setting of the play is a single room full of distorted things. The room seems more like a storage room full of junk rather than a room to live in. The object does belong to the same age, but all these objects are useless. The room resembles a city full of buildings, cars bridges, roads which are necessary for human beings just because they think so. People used to live happily even before the advent of technology. In the name of progress, human beings have adopted new habits and have filled the cities with unnecessary objects. In general, the world has now become a junkyard. Human beings, at the cost of their humanistic and moral values, have mechanized the world in the name of so-called progression.

Through his play, Harold depicts that the progression and mechanization has sucked the spiritual ability of human nature. Human beings have also rendered into useless objects: unable to perform any significant action. The three main and only characters of the play Aston, Mick, and Davies, are shown impotent. They are unable to make their dreams come true. All three have important goals and dreams but they all lack the potential to turn their dreams into reality. Not only they are unable to perform significant actions, but they have also developed queer habits and behaviors.

The depiction of these three eccentric characters raises many questions in the mind of the reader. The reader, after reading the play, cannot stop asking why Harold has chosen such characters. Such bleak depiction of human existence and the world shatters the preexisting understanding of the progress. In the quest of progress, human beings forget the most important thing of their life, i.e. the spiritual ability.

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