Table of Contents
Brilliant and renowned writer, Tennessee Williams was born in Mississippi in 1914 under the name of Thomas Williams which he later changed to Tennessee Williams. Living in Colombia, he was a fun loving kid who was open to the experience that life brought about. His move to St Louis Missouri is what proved to be the decisive beginning of his writing career. Growing up Williams loved traveling and it is this diversity of experiences that brought him closer to exploring his writing skills. His break to theatre came about in 1994 with the release of 'The Glass Menagerie" which featured first in Chicago, going on to scoop the Pulitzer award. He also managed to get three other awards, one Pulitzer and two Freedom presidential medal honors making the total to a grand 4. (Williams, 1999)
The introduction of the play is taken over by Tom, who describes goes through memory lane of the life story and experiences under the roof of his mother and sister. The play begins with a family dinner setting by the Wingfield family. Tom is infuriated by the constant nagging of Amanda and before long steps out for a puff of cigarette. Amanda continues with an own narrative on 17 callers. Day two begins with Amanda throwing in serious tantrums after finding out Laura's Decision of defecting from learning at one of the Business Colleges. To counteract this, Laura poses lack of transport and difficulty in the course as pivotal excuses to his decision.
Shortly after, Amanda reveals to Laura of a secret crash she has for Jim. (Williams, 11-1983)
Afterwards, Tom disagrees with Amanda over watching movies and describes himself as a hired gun as he rushes to go watch a movie. Later in the night, Tom returns from a drinking spree only to realize that he doesn't have his key. He is welcomed by Laura whom they share a story on the happenings at the movie. In the morning, Amanda wakes up and prepares Tom for work. When leaving, Laura asks to invite a gentleman for dinner. Before the end of the day Tom confirms Jim O'Conner as the dinner guest. Preparations for dinner take place on the next day. (Williams, 911-1983)
When night falls Tom and Jim arrive. After having a sumptuous dinner, Jim and Laura go together and exchange pleasantries which results in a kiss that Jim apologizes for. Unfortunately Laura finds out of that Tim is engaged. Jim accepts a unicorn and says his goodbyes and departs. Amanda blames Tom for not verifying of the engagement saga but Tom denies knowledge of such. Tom departs never to look back. (Williams, 911-1983)
Tragic Laura: As shown by the Plot, Laura's social and physical inabilities are not portrayed as sad until she experiences negative attributes that associate with her depiction. Although she is featured in numerous scenes, her participation in conversations is low therefore her representation as tragic in the story is only characterized by the figure of speech, direction of the cast and also the exchange between characters.
As evident, Tennessee Williams description of Laura heartbreaking story and experiences is based on her single status, reserved nature and her disabilities just to portray her difference from other characters. She is also caught in between troubled situations to add to her physical status and her social solitary nature. (Smith, 2010) Laura stays with her mother Amanda, who is caught up in times of yore at the Southern Belle and concerns with the behavior of her Children, which is described in quotes in "The Glass Menagerie" as ''fantastic Whims and behavior". On the other side her father "loves traveling a lot more than staying at home to take care of his family ("fell in love with long distances"). Laura character is also non aggressive as it is apparent when a brawl between close family members affects her greatly. Her tragic description does not end there when her long time boyfriend Jim, shares an intimate moment with her only to later reveal of his engagement to someone else. It is this dreadful event that confirms her mother's fears that Laura will forever remain a widow. At the end of the story, the beautiful nature of Laura has been tarnishes and reduced to an attractive but illusory blue rose. (Smith, 2010)
It is noticeable that the screen play direction reveals to readers of Laura's feebleness, for example; the argument between his mother and brother does not distract the attention from her. The direction of the stage reveals that whatever the direction the play takes, its main focus should remain on her. This is used to bring concentration on her character and the effect the squabble has on her .Williams describes Laura as a lucid glass with a bit of light reflecting on it but unfortunately, the light is not there to stay. He also does not completely depend on the plot to get the reader's attention and value of Laura's heartbreaking figure. (Smith 2010)
Although she is the driver of the plot, Laura's character is not completely matured as she only manages to get a limited number of script lines. The awful ending of the play sees Laura being confined to living in a house with deplorable state that does not support him. The most tragic event in the scene is at the end where Jim wanders off with Laura to talk. Jim clearly represents the modern world and that is why Laura is against it. His brother supports this by saying that Laura is" living a dream- a dream world of decorated glass". Furthermore, Jim asks if unicorns are present in today's world confirming that Laura is not fitted the contemporary society. (Smith 2010)
Glass Menagerie Quotes: Angered by Amanda Tom says "On those occasions they call me - Ell Diablo! Oh, I could tell you things to make you sleepless! My enemies plan to dynamite this place. They're going to blow us all sky-high some night! I'll be glad, very happy, and so will you! You'll go up, up on a broomstick, over Blue Mountain with seventeen gentlemen callers!"(Williams, 1911-1983)
After arriving from the movies, Tom says: "But the most wonder fullest trick of all was the coffin trick....
There is a trick that would come in handy for me-get me out of this 2 by 4 situation."!"(Williams, 1911-1983). After dinner Jim tells Laura" You know what I judge to be the trouble with you? Inferiority complex! Know what that is? That's what they call it when someone low-rates himself! I understand it because I had it, too. Although my case was not so aggravated as yours seems to be."(Williams, 1911-1983)
As I wrap up the context the play clearly shows the challenges that human socialization faces when people avoid facing problems head on and the resulting consequences of avoidance. It is the nature of human beings to escape from their fears and challenges that seem impossible and to go further to seclude themselves if, the problem is unbearable. Other cheats their friends as means to an end of their problems with most ending up cheating themselves. The tendency to always want to be right accompanied by a one's own self image and arrogance plays a huge role in facing up to one's own fears. The Glass Menagerie also depicts of peoples weaknesses in admitting wrong doings. (Serenity87, 2005)