Letter: Playwrights with peerages are not revolutionaries

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The Independent Online
AS YOU correctly report ("Knight of the left moves centre stage", 6 September) Sir David Hare has had 10 plays at the National - "a higher tally than any other living playwright". Ten slots that weren't filled by new playwrights with things to say.

Racing Demon was indeed "a marvellous dissection of the Church of England" - through it failed to come to grips with female ordination, possibly the greatest shift in that institution since Henry VIII. The political play Absence of War managed, like New Labour, to ignore the agony of the new underclass. (When will any "artist" besides Ken Loach take a crack at this disfigurement of national justice?) Sir David is a fine establishment writer, one of many who kept clear of active political involvement when the worst atrocities of Thatcherism were being enacted on the most vulnerable. Instead, fortunes were being made in the arts and titles granted. We should not be surprised by anything from "radicals" who seem to think it is revolutionary to say "fuck", and that no class distinction is perpetuated by knighthoods and peerages.


London SW6