Whose Life Is It Anyway? Essay

4924 Words 20 Pages
Does Clarkpresent arguments for and against assisted suicide without prejudicing the audience in Whose Life Is It Anyway?

The central character in 'Whose Life Is It Anyway?' is Ken Harrison who is a patient in the hospital, in which the play is set. The play sees Ken, who has been involved in a horrific car accident, recovering from various injuries, some of which will never heal. The accident leaves Ken paralysed from the neck downwards permanently, which results in him having to stay in hospital for the rest of his life.
Throughout the play Ken fights for the right to die, as he sees the situation he is in as one that is not worth living. After many struggles and set-backs, Ken is allowed to die, but against the
doctors'
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People are generally more aware of euthanasia and the effects it has in the present day as there is so much more media which provides us with up-to-date information quickly and easily i.e. the internet, radio and television.

The fact that in the 1970's euthanasia was a very closed subject and was avoided as much as possible, people who lived thirty years ago would not have really had a chance to make their own decisions on the matter, so an audience going to see 'Whose Life Is It Anyway?' would have a very open mind and be persuaded greatly by what they were seeing. A present-day audience, however, would have already made up their minds on euthanasia and would know for themselves the pros and cons of the matter as it is so commonly discussed today. Therefore they would be less easily prejudiced by the play. Nowadays people are well aware of their rights and know what they are and are not entitled to. For example, the Patient Charter, which informs patients of the intentions and allocations of the government. This would not be so in the 1970s as people were a lot less informed of their rights thirty years ago.

There are many changing relationships in the play, e.g. Dr Scott, who, when the play begins, is very professional towards Ken and tries not to got too involved with him or develop any emotional attachment to him. As the play goes on though, we see that she does