Whose Life Is It Anyway?
Clark’s theme is the freedom to live or die; and he focuses the debate on a sculptor, Claire Harrison, who has spent five months in hospital with a severed spinal cord. Claire wishes to be discharged so that she can die: her consultant argues that it is his duty to keep her alive. Invoking the Mental Health Act, he also claims that her decision stems from clinical depression. Her solicitor counters with contradictory psychiatric evidence and refers Claire’s case to law.
“When sculptor Ken Harrison is permanently paralysed in an accident, he resolves to die rather than live in his physically helpless state. His struggle for the right to die makes a gripping play, which explores the issues of human dignity and medical ethics with wit and compassion.”
(Taken from Highbury 2009–2010 leaflet)
Plays and Players Best New Play 1978
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