University of Worcester Worcester Research and Publications


Cochrane, Claire ORCID: (2021) England. In: Tom Stoppard in Context. Cambridge University Press, Cambridge, pp. 26-34. ISBN 9781108420105

Full text not available from this repository. (Request a copy)


There are many different Englands. How the nation is lived, materially experienced and /or imagined depends on the individual standpoint. In the case of Tom Stoppard, since 1967 and Rosencrantz and Guildenstern Are Dead, the play which made his name, the milieu which he has inhabited has been firmly at the heart of the British arts establishment amongst the metropolitan elite. There has been state-sanctioned recognition through the honours system: appointed CBE (Commander of the British Empire) in 1978; knighted in 1997—the first playwright since Terence Rattigan in 1971—and awarded the Order of Merit, an honour personally bestowed by the reigning monarch, in 2000. In 2008 he was placed eleventh in The Telegraph’s list of ‘The 100 most powerful people in British culture’; He has dined with the UK’s first woman prime minister and, with his fellow OMs, photographed in the company of the Queen. This England has embraced Tom Stoppard and he has repeatedly emphasised his passionate allegiance to his adopted country and the importance of its language and culture to the formation of his personality, intellect, and growth as a creative artist. Moreover the stance that he continued to maintain publically even after he had begun to learn more about his family heritage in Czechoslovakia , was of someone who was effectively born in England: that the eight year old Tomáš Straüssler who was renamed Tom Stoppard three weeks after his arrival at Southampton dock in February 1946 had no other origin. In 1999 he told the journalist Lyn Gardner ‘maybe I’m undisturbed by the past because I jumped the rails. The rails I’m on only began in 1946. They don’t disappear into the mist’.

Item Type: Book Section
Uncontrolled Discrete Keywords: Stoppard, biography, England, National Theatre, politics, heritage, playwriting, Bristol, London, the Absurd
Divisions: College of Arts, Humanities and Education > School of Arts
Related URLs:
Depositing User: Claire Cochrane
Date Deposited: 26 Oct 2022 14:40
Last Modified: 26 Oct 2022 14:40

Actions (login required)

View Item View Item
Worcester Research and Publications is powered by EPrints 3 which is developed by the School of Electronics and Computer Science at the University of Southampton. More information and software credits.