Enter your mobile number or email address below and we'll send you a link to download the free Kindle App. Then you can start reading Kindle books on your smartphone, tablet, or computer - no Kindle device required.

  • Apple
  • Android
  • Windows Phone
  • Android

To get the free app, enter your mobile phone number.

Buy New
$12.18
  • List Price: $14.95
  • Save: $2.77 (19%)
FREE Shipping on orders with at least $25 of books.
In Stock.
Ships from and sold by Amazon.com. Gift-wrap available.
Cloud 9 has been added to your Cart
Have one to sell? Sell on Amazon
Flip to back Flip to front
Listen Playing... Paused   You're listening to a sample of the Audible audio edition.
Learn more
See all 3 images

Cloud 9 Paperback – December, 1994

3.4 out of 5 stars 29 customer reviews

See all 11 formats and editions Hide other formats and editions
Price
New from Used from
Kindle
"Please retry"
Paperback, December, 1994
$12.18
$6.70 $2.80

Best Books of the Year So Far
Looking for something great to read? Browse our editors' picks for the Best Books of the Year So Far in fiction, nonfiction, mysteries, children's books, and much more.
$12.18 FREE Shipping on orders with at least $25 of books. In Stock. Ships from and sold by Amazon.com. Gift-wrap available.
click to open popover

Frequently Bought Together

  • Cloud 9
  • +
  • Angels in America: A Gay Fantasia on National Themes: Revised and Complete Edition
Total price: $25.52
Buy the selected items together

Editorial Reviews

Amazon.com Review

Reading the script for Caryl Churchill's 1979 play about sex and love is a special workout for the imagination. First, she asks you to imagine characters whose sexual identities and alliances shift constantly. Then she asks you to imagine that most of the characters make an impossible leap in time, from colonial Africa in the Victorian age to contemporary Britain. Lastly, she asks you to imagine some of the male characters played by women and some female characters played by men. Churchill likes to get things good and mixed up so all the audience's preconceptions about gender, romance, and "lifestyle" are scrambled, neutralized, and possibly even rebuilt. The title refers to the state of orgasmic and emotional bliss that everyone in this play seems to be striving for so desperately.

Review


FIVE STARS: “A feat of impure, alloyed pleasure.” – The Sunday Telegraph

"An absolute treat...wholly heavenly" – The Daily Telegraph

“Sharp comedy and a serious purpose are splendidly combined in CLOUD NINE, Caryl Churchill’s provocative and amusing study of sexual politics… It unlocks the imagination, liberates the mind, and leaves you weak with laughter” – Time Out

“There is no other play quite like Cloud 9.” – Mel Gussow, New York Times

“An innovative comedy: it is consistently engrossing and often emotionally moving.” – Leah D Frank, New York Times

"Intelligent, inventive and funny." - New York Times

"I really don't know when I've had more fun. It blends farce, pathos into a work of total theatre." - New York Daily News
NO_CONTENT_IN_FEATURE

The latest book club pick from Oprah
"The Underground Railroad" by Colson Whitehead is a magnificent novel chronicling a young slave's adventures as she makes a desperate bid for freedom in the antebellum South. See more

Product Details

  • Paperback: 88 pages
  • Publisher: Theatre Communications Group; 1st TCG ed edition (December 1994)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1559360992
  • ISBN-13: 978-1559360999
  • Product Dimensions: 5.1 x 0.2 x 7.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 3.2 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (29 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #44,208 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
This play is an interesting approach to the question of morality in the 'modern' age. It contrasts two worlds, one of moral certainty in a Victorian colonial home, and one of complete amorality and uncertainty in contemporary Britain. It does however go beyond these issues to deal with other important issues like Gender roles and the general issue of both mental and physical 'colonization' of people by society. This play should be read by anyone even remotely interested in these themes.
Comment 11 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
Format: Paperback
Caryl Churchill's dark comedic play, "Cloud Nine" is a masterpiece. Though written in 1978, its commentary on gender roles and sexuality is quite compelling to our youngest generations. With the current controversey over homosexual relationships/marriage, Cloud Nine serves as window into the frustrations and fears of gay characters. People who have a hard time identifying with alternative lifestyles would have a lot to learn from reading through this play. In a way, Churchill's play is a bridge builder between the heterosexual world and the gay minority.
Cloud Nine follows the story of a family. The first act takes place on a South African plantation during the English Victorian Era, while in the second act, though the characters have only aged 20 years, the action takes place in London, England in the 1970's. Clive, the family patron, is the center of a male-oriented soceity and incourages traditional family and gender roles. For the first act, his wife Betty is played by a man, his gay son Edward is played by a woman, and his black servant is played by a white man. Immediately we learn that only Clive is satisfied with his station in life, where the other characters suffer many indignities to themselves that go unnoticed by everyone else (i.e. Edward is being molested by a friend of his father, who eventually attempts to seduce Clive as well). By the second act, time has moved forward and we watch the characters trying to adapt to an ever changing world in which parts of them is too withdrawn.
Chruchill's play is clever and intense with emotion. To connect with one character is to really experience the mental frustration and the indignities that we suffer from a judgemental society. I praise Caryl Churchill for this commentary in hopes that readers will gain a sense of sympathy for such people and in turn will promote tolerance.
Comment 13 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
Format: Paperback
I have just finished reading Caryl Churchill's infamous play "Cloud Nine". I found the book to be an amazing tool to present to the reader those social issues which we have so desperately tried to sweep under the bed. The book is actually a play through which her use of a Brechtian style of theater keeps the reader in a sort of shocked confusion and not very comfortable. At first glance you might say it is vulgar and rude, yet a deeper evaluation proves that this play is an effective tool to dredge up what society has sunk to the bottom of the river.
Comment 4 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
Format: Paperback
Caryl Churchill's play makes a powerful and courageous statement. She discusses issues of feminism, colonialism, and sex. Set in the Brechtian theater, Churchill is able to tell it like it is. The play does not necessarily condone or diapprove these issues, but puts them out there to be discussed. She infers in her work that ignoring these issues is like approving of these acts by letting them continue to occur. Her characters are sometimes homosexual, or else they are obssessed with premiscuous sex. Her play may be shocking to the reader, but once you are over the initial shock, you begin to realize what she is saying. Churchill forces the reader to think about these issues and how society deals with them. This play is important to our culture and you should pick it up sometime.
Comment 6 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
Format: Paperback
As far as Brechtian plays go, Churchill is a master at alienation and disidentification- characters in this play are played as the protagonist's projection of who he thinks they should be (ie: the westernized African servant is played by a white actor). Although the effect is extremely powerful onstage, particularly when it raises up complex social and ethnic issues, the different characters can be hard to keep straight on paper. This play works far better in performance than it does in print, but it remains a valuable teaching tool for both Brecht and World Theatre studies.
Comment 6 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
Format: Paperback
Cloud Nine is an amazing play, a break-through drama in its time. Churchill plays fast and loose with the decades in her deconstruction of the glacial change of gender typing from Victorian times until the late '70's. She blends cartooned and naturalistic characterization to demonstrate the impact of character types on our deepest ideas of self. This play is funny, revelatory, and terribly moving.
Comment 6 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Churchill's "Cloud 9" is a crazy insane roller-coaster of gender-flips, shifting characters, crude sex, and anachronisms. Challenging notions of feminine sexuality, this play is definitely both one of the most insightful and strangest texts I've read in a while.
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
Format: Paperback
This play reminds me of the sort of `theatre of the absurd' which we did in the 6th form, in the late 1960s, with our trendy drama teacher. It comes from the time of travelling theatre workshops visiting schools with anti-racist and gay liberation agendas. It is like a hilariously funny farce with its cross-dressing and some of us would love see it performed or, at least, see if it is on Youtube. One member of our book group said that if had seen it in 1979 it would have changed his life.

The first act, set in Victorian Africa, shows how the colonials regarded the natives as primitive, herdsmen would gladly chop off others' heads and wear them round their waists and how some natives knew their place, were `white' in their souls though black of skin.

Friendship between men is seen as better and that of a husband to a wife, who is there for reproductive purposes but `there is something dark about women....irrational, inconsistent, lustful; treacherous.'

One woman's advice to a soon to be bride, who knows nothing about sex, is to just keep still. You are not getting married to enjoy yourself

Homosexuality is seen as a `revolting perversion' which led to the fall of Rome and is more contagious than diphtheria. It is especially important not to do it with natives since it would be a betrayal of the Queen.

The second act is a hundred years later, though I don't understand why the characters are only twenty-five years older. Attitudes to sexuality are supposed to be liberated, there is mention of The Hite Report but there is still a feeling of oppression, with some male characters wearing dresses. Maybe attitudes don't change as much as we think they do.
Although the play is well put together, the first act is more believable that the second.
Read more ›
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse

Set up an Amazon Giveaway

Cloud 9
Amazon Giveaway allows you to run promotional giveaways in order to create buzz, reward your audience, and attract new followers and customers. Learn more about Amazon Giveaway
This item: Cloud 9

What Other Items Do Customers Buy After Viewing This Item?