Tranquility is a living seismograph of the internal quakes and ruptures of a mother and son trapped within an Oedipal nightmare amidst the suffocating totalitarian embrace of Communist Hungary. Andor Weer, a thirty-six-year-old writer, lives in a cramped apartment with his shut-in mother, Rebeka, who was once among the most celebrated stage actresses in Budapest. Unable to withstand her maniacal tyranny but afraid to leave her alone, their bitter interdependence spirals into a Sartrian hell of hatred, lies, and appeasement. Then Andor meets the beautiful and nurturing Eszter, a woman who seems to have no past, and they fall wildly in love at first sight. With a fulfilling life seemingly within reach for the first time, Andor decides that he is ready to bring Eszter home to meet Mother. Though Bartis s characters are unrepentantly neurotic and dressed in the blackest humor, his empathy for them is profound. A political farce of the highest ironic order, concluding that "freedom is a condition unsuitable for humans," Tranquility is ultimately, at its splanchnic core, a complex psychodrama turned inside out, revealing with visceral splendor the grotesque notion that there s nothing funnier than unhappiness."