“The Glass Menagerie” is an artistry story by Tennessee Williams, in which a grown-up boy matures and is struggling on whether to the leave his family and build his career or stay with them and help them but have a job he doesn’t like. The author conveys the responsibility of the boy trying to fulfill the dream of his mother. This is a Tennessee Williams’ play based on a family of a mother, daughter and, a son. Since the father passed away, there was no one to support the family, so the son had to step up and support his family financially. The daughter is self-conscious and doesn’t like to meet people as she suffers from “Anxiety and loneliness”. Due to her illness, she could not concentrate on her studies and finish school. This made her mother worried about getting her married. Due to her daughter’s condition and the family’s financial crisis, she depends on her son’s paycheck and wants him to stay with the family to support them. Though the son wants to help the family, he doesn’t like the job that he is doing in the village and wants to leave the family to find a better life for himself. It is basically an autobiography of the author himself and each of the characters in the drama connects with his own family members. In the play, his real father did not support the family financially. Due to this, his mother was overbearing and controlling, which led to some family problems. His sister suffered from psychological problems. This shows that the author has suffered tremendous pressure. During the 19th century, realism was a movement that went against the melodramatic style that was adopted by most playwrights. But the play, “The Glass Menagerie” characterizes realism. Tennessee Williams made the actors realistic and makes the audience to relate to them. Even the writing style is naturalistic as it is the autobiography of the author. The details of the situations of the scenes and the actor’s emotions that they portrayed are all real. There is also some difference in naturalism, due to the memory narration of the actors, which leads to the introduction of realistic presentation. The presentation of the characters and the contrast between them is portrayed in the drama very uniquely. For example, the shy sister and her brother’s dilemma on whether to leave and have his dream job or stay with the family while sacrificing his desire to have a fulfilling life for the sake of his family. His mother’s controlling nature and at the same time her motherly love and worry about her daughter’s future clearly explains artistry of the author. As said by Amanda that, “My devotion has made me a witch and so I make myself hateful to my children!” Tom is battling between his responsibilities towards his family or his future to have a fulfilling life is well depicted in the drama. Here is the actual passage from the play: “Amanda’s demands were stifling Tom. They prevented him from progressing with his own life. Loving other people means that you will sacrifice many things for them, but you cannot be expected to sacrifice your youth and hopes for happiness. For Tom, there was nothing at home except a dead-end job, his difficult relationship with his mother, and watching his sister sink”. The reason that Tom wanted to leave his home that his mom nags him a lot. For example, even during his dinner, “And chew-chew! Animals have sections in their stomachs which enable them to digest food without mastication, but human beings are supposed to chew their food before they swallow it down”. However, Tom doesn’t  the motherly love but thinks that she controls him. The author Tennessee Williams, presents how human fantasy helps to escape from an individual problem temporarily and how he/she longs to live like that in actual life. Each family member expects for a fantasy world but when that, in reality, it’s too harsh for them to face it. For example, Amanda has trouble accepting the reality of Laura’s condition and her marriage. Amanda is also enraptured by the fantasy of a “Gentleman Caller” for Laura. Though these ideas are far from reality, they allow Amanda to continue living and trying in a desperate situation. At the same time, Laura also uses the fantasy world of the glass menagerie and her music to substitute for interactions with people. In a way, this is harmful to Laura as gets used to confronting her very serious problems. Whereas, Tom hates his life and escapes to the unreal world of the movies, attending magic shows, and drinking. These allow him to cope as he helps his mother and sister. Eventually, it is not enough and he decides that he must leave. “Memory is not reality, but an interpretation of the past”. The theme of memory lies with the fantasy theme. The author explains the struggle between the characters of how they control both human behavior and character. In the play, Amanda’s obsession with memory brings to the next important theme called “memory theme”. At the same time, Laura too lives in her past and lives in her memories. She lives in her past and remembers her childhood crush Jim and the memories with him describes in the play that makes the audience to remember their past too. Jim was the only boy she liked, and she was embarrassed to tell her family and controls her feelings without telling it to anyone. Finally, memory is what makes Tom, leads him to tell his story. “For nowadays the world is lit by lightning! Blow out your candles, Laura — and so goodbye. . . .”. So Tom’s last advice to Laura is to bring in light and erase images that he doesn’t have to remember and be guilty of it. The artistry the author Tennessee Williams shows in portraying the human complex relationships in the play and they control everyone’s lives and bring in a message that though humans have potential to excel they are limited by the relations that they are entangled in. For example, the author describes how Laura loves Jim and he is certainly attracted to her. But she comes to know Jim is already engaged to Betty and then her world falls apart. In the case of Tom, though he loves his mother and his sister, his need to live a fulfilling life causes him to go away from his family. Whereas Amanda loves her children neither she can convince Tom to stay with the family nor she can help her daughter steeled in life and torn apart in her life. At the same time, she is helpless and cannot stop trying to interfere with Tom’s need to live his own life.The characters in the play, particularly Amanda, the mother, and Laura, the sister, may make the readers feel uncomfortable. If that happens, the playwright and the actors are doing their jobs. If the audience question themselves, “What could have Tom done differently to avoid moving away?” and in the same fashion ask about ” why Tom feels the need to tell this story”. Certainly, the answers to these questions will take you to the heart of the play. Clearly, the author Tennessee William has shown his artistry in achieving the dramatic effects by presenting the play as a “memory play” instead of telling it chronologically.


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