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play "An Altar to Himself"

original title Oltarz wzniesiony sobie 
original language Polish 
playwright Ireneusz Iredynski
title of translation An Altar to Himself 
language of translation English 
translator Michal Kobialka
synopsis The play is a reconstruction of the events of the last three days proceeding the suicide of Piotr – the main character. They are presented in the form of séances, and a liturgy of curses of people – phantoms existing in his bleary mind.  In the first scene, Port is confronted with his mother’s lover who apparently sent his father to prison for his political views in the Stalin era. Piotr, unable to come into terms with the new reality, joins a group of thugs. His father is released from the prison in 1956. Soon afterwards, the father commits suicide, for his hopes for a normal life are crushed by Piotr. The second scene concentrates on Piotr’s career which starts with his work as a censor and ends up with his work in the party circles. His wife a Jew, leaves him in 1968 after she realizes that he is involved in the anti-Semitic purges at that time in Poland. In the third scene Piotr is a high official who starts to alienate himself from the system which first seduced him and now destroys the remnants of humanity, loyalty, and idealism in him. He manifests his attitude towards the system at the party meeting, criticizing the regime and stripping off. After five years which he spends in a mental asylum, he is discharged and starts to work in the props-room. It is also the setting of his fight and final reconciliation with ‘demons” of his life driving him to the ensuing tragedy: his suicide. 
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