I'm protesting, I'm protesting... I'm staying silent


I recently read the play Cigarettes and Chocolate by Anthony Minghella. The story follows Gemma, a woman in her twenties who has recently turned silent. Stopped talking. Completely. The reason behind her silence follows the idea that words are meaningless and words are punishment, 'saying so much to say nothing.' Making the point that words don't change anything, actions do. 
Nothing happens in the play. It's entirety consists of conversations between the people in Gemma's life. - How they react to her sudden silence, the things they confess when they think it is their own fault she has stopped talking. But despite the meaningless conversations and the meaningless words, there lies a lot of meaning. 
The play consists of a lot of aggression and frustration, largely expressed through words. However nothing is resolved and nothing changes. Words don't change anything. 
'Look, already it's happening here, the weight of words, the torrent ... the rage, the protest all clotting together...but the silence, listen, how rich it is ...'
'What do you remember? When all is said and done? ... A breath? A tune? The weight of your grandmother's coffin?'
'Don't speak for a day and then start looking. The senses are sharp. The snarl. The roar. The madness.'

Anthony Minghella
London, January 1997

"I've never been much interested or concerned with adjudicating the behaviour of individuals. It has always seemed clear to me that behaviour is primarily a reflection, albeit distorted, of society's messages to its people. I don't sense this in any dark, conspiratorial sense; simply if we collectively opt for the misanthropic, that's what we must surely get back. So nothing which happens in the rooms of these plays makes sense without the activity outside of their windows... For these plays are as much a mirror held up to my own choices as they are a reflections of the society... The recurring weaknesses of human beings seem to me to be leavened by the potential for good, for laughter, for boundless generosity, for healing. And, for love."

*Actions speak louder that words.*

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