British dramatist born in London and educated at Sussex University. He came to prominence with a series of scathing dramas about the injustices of society: these included Stripwell (1975), Fair Slaughter (1977), The Loud Boy's Life (1980), No End of Blame (1981), Scenes from an Execution (1984), and two plays set in a nightmarish Britain of the future, That Good between Us (1977) and The Hang of the Gaol (1978). His work, never wholly realistic, gradually became more darkly comic in tone, more exotic in language and form, and less direct in its attack on Establishment targets: as witness The Castle (1985), Seven Lears (1989), and Ten Dilemmas (1992). Despite its complexities, Barker's work has acquired a cult following.
Subjects: Literature — Theatre.