Essay about The Hairy Ape By Eugene O ' Neill

1047 Words Jan 22nd, 2016 5 Pages
The Hairy Ape is a 20th century play by Eugene O 'Neill that utilizes expressionistic techniques to depict class divisions in America. Classism is an aspect of society that O 'Neill criticizes through the voice of the protagonist, Yank. Yank is a working class fireman, determined to destroy the upper class who, according to him, have no real value in society. He believes laborers are the country 's foundation, even though the industrial era has replaced many workers with machines. The dehumanization of society due to industrialization is a theme in The Hairy Ape that is similar to the dehumanizing effect of technology in the world today. In addition, The Hairy Ape depicts ignorance of the wealthy towards the poor, which is an issue that is pertinent in today 's society. Because the societal issues that O 'Neill address in the play remain issues in the modern world, The Hairy Ape is indeed still relevant.
The Hairy Ape is set during the 1920s in America, where the effects of industrialization are clearly perceptible. The Second Industrial Revolution swept the United States from the late 19th to early 20th century and it replaced jobs that were traditionally done by humans with jobs done by machines, forever changing the way goods are produced. This ultimately led to a dehumanization of the manufacturing of goods, and even the laborers who ran the machines weren 't always viewed as human beings. This unfortunate onset of industrialization is exemplified in scene III of The…

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