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Shopping and Fucking

3.47  ·  Rating Details ·  658 Ratings  ·  40 Reviews
This ground-breaking drama was Mark Ravenhill's first full-length play and part of a movement in the 1990s of "in your face" British theatre which frankly dealt with issues of sex and violence and pointedly challenged societal values. The play explores how consumerism has become our new value system which reduces everything else to a mere transaction, as shopping malls bec ...more
Paperback, 96 pages
Published November 4th 1996 by Bloomsbury Methuen Drama (first published July 1st 1996)
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Oct 04, 2009 Alexa rated it really liked it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Outi S.
Mar 31, 2008 Outi S. rated it really liked it
Goes with Sarah Kane's works. Horrible but good.
Jun 23, 2017 Ekim rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
İleri okuma olarak Mimesis Dergi' de yayınlanan In-Yer- Face: Tarihsel ve Teorik Bir İnceleme' yi öneririm. Öyle güzel ki, öyle oynanılası! Tiyatro Dot oynamış, ellerine sağlık.
Claudia Alonso Martínez
Such a tough book to read... I just couldn't handle such strong scenes so I definitely know now that I won't be reading more in-yer-face theatre.
Dec 22, 2010 Stuart rated it liked it
Ravenhill's ambitious little play draws heavily from the literary traditions of Joe Orton, Bret Easten Ellis, Jay MacInery, John Osborn and pretty much everybody else who has ever become obsessed with the lowest, angriest scraping of the social barrel, but his classical roots allow him to find some level of redemption in his tales and that's what makes his work complex and interesting instead of just banal and exploitive. Though at first Lulu, Robbie and Mark seem like overly modern archetypes o ...more
Carac Allison
Jun 20, 2014 Carac Allison rated it liked it
As you can likely guess from the title the author of "Shopping and Fucking" wanted to shock readers and playgoers. And following in the tradition of Edward Bond and Brad Fraser Mark Ravenhill delivers a solid upper cut with each scene. Yet the true shock of this work isn't the drugs or the violence or the sex but the moral void in which all of that happens. These are two dimensional characters on a large flat screen television. Everything can be purchased. No, it's worse than that: everything mu ...more
Jan 19, 2015 Jaimi rated it really liked it
Shelves: plays
This is a wonderful play that gets straight to the point. No metaphors or hidden subtext it just puts everything on the table. I would really like to see a production of this one day to fully understand the confrontational text and how it was rightfully part of the 'In your Face' theatre movement in the UK in the 90's. The play clearly comments on how consumerism has become part of our societal value system and how that it is integrated into our everyday lives. It is shocking and explicit and hu ...more
Jul 21, 2016 Adrian rated it liked it
I went to see this play circa 1998 at the Newcastle Playhouse - I remember it being shocking, but had forgotten what a set of dystopian fragments these scenes were. Anyway, quite depressing view on materialism and transactions of many forms. Grim.
Dec 31, 2015 Bassem rated it really liked it
Easily one of my very favourite contemporary texts.

Mark Ravenhill's emphasis on how our inner beings are driven by consumerism is evidently enthralling.
Michael Thorley
Jun 24, 2017 Michael Thorley rated it really liked it
At last an open and honest book
"Benim kişiliğimi bir yönü var-kişiliğimin bağımlı hale gelen kısmı. Kendimi, başkalarıyla olan ilişkilerim bağlamında tanımlama eğilimim var. Anlıyorsun ya, kendimi tanımlayamıyorum. Bu yüzden, bundan kaçınmak için, kendimi tanımaktan kaçınmak için, başkalarına bağlanıyorum. Ki bu potansiyel olarak oldukça yıkıcı. Benim için yıkıcı"

"Brian: Ben hata sevmem. Kendi hatalarımı da sevmem"

"Gary: Beni seviyor musun? Öyle mi? Aşk mı?

Mark: Bilmiyorum. Bunu nasıl tanımlarsın? Evet, fiziksel bir şey var.
Feb 10, 2015 Uri rated it did not like it
"Mr. Ravenhill’s slack, simple-minded message is as flashily empty as the neon signs that illuminate the drama’s anonymous grungy set, and I’m not about to indulge it. Yet several admiring articles I’ve read about the play compare it favorably, almost inevitably, to the social rage and newness of John Osborne’s 1956 Look Back in Anger . How is it possible?

The Osborne landmark shocked an entire theatergoing generation into a new awareness of England precisely because nothing like it had been writ
Oct 20, 2012 Paulina rated it really liked it
I think I'm in love with Ravenhill's ability to courageously portray the inner decay of his characters while not forgetting how sensible, fragile and humanlike they actually are.
It's so broken and yet so tender.

Robbie: I didn't say that.
I think... I think we all need stories, we make up stories so that we can get by.
And I think a long time ago there were big stories. Stories so big you could live your whole life in them. The Powerful Hands of the Gods and Fate. The Journey to Enlightenment. Th
Lance R. Goebel
Aug 29, 2012 Lance R. Goebel rated it it was amazing
Shelves: favorites
Mark Ravenhill is a genius. His play uses the interactions between Lulu and Robbie, two servants, their owner Mark, a young prostitute named Gary and a businessman, Brian, to explore a variety of issues. The book touches on class warfare, the effects of consumerism on the psyche, the psychology of addiction, and the emptiness of our culture. Ravenhill weaves a tale that will bring you to tears, fill you with laughter, and encourage you to analyze the world that we find ourselves inhabiting.

The m
Taylor Nawrocki
Mar 03, 2013 Taylor Nawrocki rated it it was ok
I guess it's just easiest to give it three stars. I read this play for my LitCrit class while studying Marxism. I can't say I cared for the play, but that very well may not be the play's fault. I don't like these kind of books or, in this case, plays. That doesn't mean they aren't good for what they are. I can, in no part, relate to the characters. I find much of the content disturbing and downright sad. Maybe this world is incredibly screwed up, and maybe this play does a good job of illustrati ...more
Apr 16, 2013 Stefan rated it it was amazing
"Tell me, son, says my dad, what are the first few words in the Bible? I don’t know, Dad, I say, what are the first few words in the Bible? And he looks me, he looks me in the eye and he says: Son, the first few words in the Bible are... get money first. Get. The money. First... It’s not perfect, I don’t deny it. We haven’t reached perfection. But it’s closest we’ve come to meaning, Civilisation is money. Money is civilisation. And civilisation- how did we get here? By war, by struggle, kill or ...more
Jonathan Edgington
Aug 21, 2013 Jonathan Edgington rated it really liked it
Shelves: plays
Mark Ravenhill has achieved iconic status in the world of new writing for stage. I once read a description of his work which went something like " ironic in tone, controversial in stage imagery and constantly questioning of social mores..." which really sums up what he is all about. Don't be put off by the content and/or the language - read this play (or better still, go and see it performed if you get the chance) and enjoy the wonderful style and rhythm of the dialogue. The obscenity in the pla ...more
Oct 16, 2016 tomwrote rated it really liked it
Shelves: plays
Brutal in many ways; not just sexually but in its bluntness, crudity, despair.

The mechanics haven't aged too well - it's got a loft apartment, AIDS paranoia feel to it that's dated a bit. Twenty somethings right now can't even afford to be poverty stricken in their own place.

The rampant consumerism and commodification of emotions warned of here has been achieved many times over in the time since this was written though.
Apr 18, 2013 Barbora rated it it was amazing
Shelves: drama
How would you define that word? There's a physical thing, yes. A sort of wanting, which isn't love is it? No, that's well, desire. But then, yes, there's an attachment I suppose. There's also that. Which means I want to be with you, now, here, when you're with me I feel like a person and if you're not with me I feel less like a person.

Just impressive and brilliant.
Michelle Lynne
Jan 16, 2013 Michelle Lynne rated it it was amazing
Shelves: favorites, plays
This is one of my favourite plays. I love the comparison between consuming via shopping and consuming sex via shopping. Or simply consuming sex as something to be had rather than something to experience. Commodifying all of these symbols throughout the play was really ingenious. I just loved reading this play.
Armagan Kilci
Feb 12, 2015 Armagan Kilci rated it it was amazing
This was a sharp 5 stars for me. It was like "sincerity meets brutality".
I don't know what made me love the book so much. It is very cinematographic; probably, this was the reason for me to love it. Gregg Araki meets Haneke kind of narrative.
Britt Marczak
Sep 28, 2011 Britt Marczak rated it it was amazing
Shelves: plays
Read this for my Modern British Drama class in college. It's rough and perverse in everything it does, but it really hits the nail on the head. Absolutely love it in its horrible truth.

I'm also very, very interested to know how this is acted out on stage! I'd love to see a production of this.
Dec 19, 2016 Daniel rated it really liked it
Shelves: read-in-2016
Gripping trainwreck of desensitized but real people.
Mar 07, 2012 Melissa rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Intense, and still thinking about it.
Dec 10, 2009 Nafiza rated it liked it
Shelves: books-i-own
A sad look at the consumer culture our world is entrenched in. More terrifying than anything else because it hits close to home and you can't deny the truth it's telling.
Dec 29, 2008 Anna rated it liked it
I read this for my comp lit class on shopping. Yes, shopping. It made for some pricelessly awkward moments when we read scenes out loud.
I have no idea what this play is about.
May 05, 2012 Cecilie rated it it was amazing
Percutant. Actuel. Universel.
Patrik Kondáš
Jul 09, 2014 Patrik Kondáš rated it really liked it
Bolo tam viac toho fucking, než shopping. Ale podľa mňa to bolo v pohode.
Mar 16, 2015 Berenice rated it did not like it
Shelves: uni-books
I don't understand the purpose of this play...
Sex drug and k then.
Why do I had to read for uni though??
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Mark Ravenhill (born 7 June 1966) is an English playwright, actor and journalist.

His plays include Shopping and Fucking (first performed in 1996), Some Explicit Polaroids (1999) and Mother Clap's Molly House (2001). He made his acting debut in his monologue Product, at the 2005 Edinburgh Festival Fringe. He often writes for the arts section of The Guardian. He is Associate Director of London's Lit
More about Mark Ravenhill...

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