Only Hook-Up

Matthew Lopez, The Inheritance (directed by Stephen Daldry, Young Vic)

Inevitably, when faced with a two part, seven-hour play about young gay men in New York, the memory returns to Angels in America. But this is twenty years later, new rather than revived, and focuses on a generation of gay men for whom AIDS is more treatable and preventable, given the right connections to health care. Coming out is less of an issue now, the anxiety is over whether to marry and how to adopt — a transgressive gay culture has been replaced with a nice apartment, kids and a weekend home somewhere upstate. For better or worse. In fact, some of the characters express nostalgia for the community in the era of HIV and ACT UP, as the heterotopia of the gay bar, the bath house, the sauna and the heath are replaced by Grindr (other apps are available).
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Only Dissect

My degree began with Modernist literature, which was both a good and bad thing, and I remember finding E.M. Forster a chore even at the time. He didn’t have the transgressive potential of a Conrad, a Woolf or a Joyce, but he didn’t fit into my sense of the Victorian novel. Whilst his distinction between story and plot in Aspects of the Novel continued to be useful, I had a sense that he couldn’t plot for shit. Too often a key scene was obscure (whatever happened in the cave) or took place between the chapters (the death of Mrs Moore). He fell between two stools.

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