The Glass Menagerie Identity Analysis

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The Search for Identity
An absence of both individualism and faith coated the American psyche during Great Depression. Living in conservative Missouri, Tennessee Williams was not only disgusted by the lack of creativity present in the urban atmosphere, but also the lack of freedom due to his homosexuality ("About Tennessee Williams"). In an effort to liberate himself both spiritually and financially, Williams began writing plays, many of which have a crafted resemblance to his own childhood (Bray). The Glass Menagerie, an expressionist play set during the Great Depression, underscores the emotional tension existing between the three members of the Wingfield Family: the mother Amanda, daughter Laura, and son Tom. Amanda, due to her obsession with her past, latches onto the emotionally and physically handicapped Laura and subsequently forces Tom to find Laura a suitor. Although Laura perceives her mother’s effort to be useless, Tom does bring home a suitor named Jim who removes Laura from the tedium of her life for a short time. Through juxtaposition, pronounced symbolism, and a monotonous
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He showcases this loss through the constant use of juxtaposition between the main character 's, stressing the destructive nature of inaccurate perceptions and lingering memories on future success. The inclusion of symbolism surrounding glass reinforces the concept that identity, though sought after, relies almost entirely on perceived self-image. Additionally, the simplicity of play’s structure solidifies the negative impact conformity can have in the search for a unique personality. Williams, through his delicately crafted play, effectively challenges the reader to more carefully reflect on live by viewing him or herself in the same glass that destroyed the Wingfield

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