Free «Character Analysis of Chandler in “Shivaree”» Essay Sample


Chandler Kimbrough lives a lonely life as a hemophilic. His mother is overprotective, and literally imprisons him. He is not permitted to go outside, except when accompanied by his mother in her cab. Chandler experiences a feeling of loneliness. He wants to break loose from his mother’s cage and taste life outside their house. His objective is to be in love and experience what other young men like him do. Although he is very naïve concerning things of the outside world, he is very intelligent. Chandler wants to discover the world beyond what he has always known. His mother has been so much caring that she has him on a radio call whenever she is at work. It can also be argued that the objective of Chandler in this scene, and to extension, in the whole play, is not only to break loose from his overprotective mother and discover himself, but also to live in a real world because he is so much involved in cosmic things given that he is a self-proclaimed astrologist.


Although Chandler manages to find love, which is his objective, he, nonetheless, faces a number of challenges, one of which is his hemophilic condition. Such a condition makes Chandler a real prisoner. His mother does not want him to go outside as he may get hurt, and this makes him naïve. When he manages to invite a lady to his house with a help of Scagg, he does not know how to behave with the girl. He keeps on searching for some wine that Scagg had brought him, and it is clear that it is just an excuse because he does not feel like he is ready to make love with the lady. Another obvious obstacle that Chandler faces is his overprotective mother who wants him to stay indoors, hence shutting the doors of the real world of young men. Despite all these challenges and obstacles, Chandler finally finds love in a girl Shivaree, who lives next door and works as a belly dancer.



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As mentioned earlier, Chandler is an intelligent young man. He is widely- read and particularly interested in astronomy. His motivation of finding someone to love is partly due to the longing for an acquaintance. He does not know what to do about it, but Scagg, ice-cream truck driver, is there to lend a helping hand. He procures a prostitute, named Laura, for him. Chandler is eager to lose his virginity, but something goes wrong as he seems not quite ready to do this. Despite the loose of the collected money paid for the services, he is still not ready to rise to the occasion. Therefore, Chandler is motivated by his youthful lusts to find someone to get acquainted with despite the fact that his mother has literally shut him from the common human beings’ desires.

Sense Memory and Endowment

Sense memory is the basic and one of the most effective acting techniques for improving real-life situations. It is used not only in one form or another by most actors but is also the basis for a great number of other acting techniques. It is one of the techniques that allow an actor to laugh or cry, sometimes simply by remembering the smell of someone’s perfume, or the taste of a special dessert. Sense memory is the creation of imaginary objects through the memory of peoples’ five senses; that is what they see, hear, smell, taste, and touch. In a sense memory performance, the actor recalls physical sensation. He or she allows the memory to occur physically rather than intellectually.

One of the examples in which sense memory can be used is in acting like someone drinks a hot drink by mistake, for instance, coffee. In this case, the actor will recall the sensations associated with drinking something hot in order to come up with a performance that in a way that looks like a real-life experience. It is possible because the actor can remember the senses related to the performance; hence, he is able to execute it in a sense filtered through his experience. Another example of sense memory is meeting someone the actor has not seen for a long time. In this case, the actor will recall the sensations associated with such an occasion and bring out the emotions tied to it. On the other hand, endowment entails providing the other actor with everything one thinks should be getting and responding like they got it that way. Such a technique is used when an actor feels that there is no connection between him and another actor.

Physical Characteristics/Description

Chandler is in his twenties or thirties. He is hemophilic. In addition, he likes books, and this is evident as Laura notices a pile of books, questioning him whether he has read all of them. He has graduated from college or university, as he cites his professor of philosophy. Pale skin is one of his attributes as well.

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Social/Economic Status

According to the occupation of his mother (she works as a taxi-driver), it can be deducted that Chandler does not have a high socioeconomic background. In addition, this can be proved by the fact that he had collected coins for a long time in order to get enough money to pay for a prostitute to satisfy his youthful lusts.

Psychological Profile

Chandler has been locked for such a long time by his mother that he has become naïve. He appears to be a comical character at the beginning of the scene. He seems to be confused as he in vain searches for the bottle of wine brought to him by Scagg. However, he is not ready to go to bed with Laura as this is quite complicated for him to do in a sober state. Thus, he needs to be drunk so as to become braver and go to bed with Laura.

Moment Before

Although the script does not provide information on what might have happened before this scene, it can be inferred that Scagg has just completed his task of procuring Laura and brought a bottle of wine with him in order for Chandler to enjoy before or during his encounter with Laura. In addition, Chandler’s mother, Mary, must have already gone to work as she is not present in the act.

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Other relevant interesting character traits, information

Chandler also appears as a quite determined person. His determination to have sex drives him to pay Scagg to procure a girl for him. However, there are stumbling blocks in a quest for quenching the youthful lusts that have taken a toll on him. One of them is his overprotective mother, who does not allow him to go outside for fear of being injured and having relationships with other human beings. However, Chandler manages to prove his courage and falls in love with Shivaree, a belly dancer, who knows how to handle people who have been locked in like Chandler. His determination can also be seen in the fact that despite his mother’s prohibition to fall in love with Shivaree, he finds enough strength to break it.


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