The Beggar's Opera Analysis

807 Words 4 Pages
In The Beggar’s Opera, marriage is a recurring topic throughout the story and provides insights on what marriage was like in the seventeen hundreds as depicted by John Gay. In the world of The Beggar’s Opera, marriage was not based on an emotional connection and had no resemblance to the romantic notion of a holy union between two people. Rather, it suggested that love is closely aligned with lust and security of wealth. The characters in The Beggars Opera rely on marriage for three main reasons, financial security, freedom of sexual expression, and freedom from judgment. All of these representations were unique in the time period, and helped to make Gay's work so bold for the works of his time. Financial Security in marriage is still …show more content…
In The Beggar’s Opera, freedom of sexual expression is idolized among Polly and her complicated relationship with Macheath. Freedom of sexual expression is put forward as a potential benefit of marriage, far different from the romantic notion of monogamy. A scholarly article about sexual expression within marriage explains that without sexual release it is difficult to focus one’s mind on one specific task, especially for men. (Source 2). Through sex and marriage Polly carries her self worth through her husband. This occurs many times in the play, this scenery suggests progressive ideas of femininity by embracing sexual potential and suggesting that can help woman achieve a freedom outside of their …show more content…
Gay was successful in reaching a well diverse audience that may appeal to a more romantic notion of love based on the naïve Polly who sought to see the best in people; and the harsh and realistic Peachum who was out for money and would do anything to promote his own ambitious ways. The three characteristics of marriage that do not involve romance such as wealth, sexual expression, and social status, are all seen in today’s world and have developed to be the new normal of many marriages in this new

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