Critique du livre
- The Effect (2012)

le 21/01/2015 par lorrain

Tristan and Connie meet in the course of a clinical trial for anti-depressants. In order to test the effects of the medication, they will spend four weeks in a hospital. A guy and a girl, a limited space calling for freedom, drugs. What’s gonna happen? Love indeed. And this is the question of the play: among these factors, where does love come from? Is it a chemical chain-reaction linked with the trial or is it just the unexplainable result of two people meeting? Experimenting on two pairs of characters, two patients and two doctors, The Effect explores how perceptions of love affect not only their lives, but also the scientific results of the experiment.


The guinea pigs come from different backgrounds and have contrasting personalities. Both are in their late twenties or early thirties. She is a rather sensitive and serious, sexually-closeted student. He is more of a facetious twenteenager traveler and lives with his mother. Pathetic, their encounter is also magnetic. But if they fall in love, is it an effect of the medication, or is it natural?

The doctors’ past is not made explicit, but their dialogues indicate more than a purely professional relationship. Why is Dr. Lorna James chosen by her ex-mentor? Their personal histories affect the experiment. And how can they decide to observe different causes for the same effect? The patients’ happiness could be linked to the anti-depressant, or to their encounter.

In a very readable series of dialogues punctuated by humorous situations, The Effect asks if mystery still holds a place in the highly disputed territories of the human brain and heart.


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