The Glass Menagerie Escaping From Reality English Literature Essay

Life might not continually be as perfect as we hope or as adventurous as we wish it to be, and at times we may even stumble across obstacles inside our lives. Many individuals confront these obstacles; however, there are a number of men and women who detach themselves from reality and escape creating a perfect world of their own. In the play "The Glass Menagerie" it is apparent that all of the Wingfield members escapes to a fantasy world of their own to be able to evade reality.

One of the members of the Wingfield family is Tom, whom is with the capacity of functioning in the real world, as he is employed and interacts with strangers. Tom, confronted with his lame day-to-day factory job and by the unpleasant thought of returning home every evening to a mother who's not willing to comprehend his needs or desires, retreats into his own fictional world. He dreams of joining the merchant marines and some day learning to be a published writer of poetry. Daily, Tom hides from his reality by going to the films, and intoxicated himself with alcohol. Tom states to Jim, his friend, that the other viewers at the films he attends are substituting on-screen adventure for real-life adventure, finding fulfillment in illusion rather than true to life. After one drunken night, Tom amuses Laura by recounting the magic show in which the magician managed to escape from a nailed coffin. It might be that Tom views his life along with his family and at the warehouse as the coffin in which he's confined. Tom may feel as if he is locked into his life by his thoughts and love for his mother and sister and possibly even loyalty to them as he is the one who supports the family. In the long run, he has no more motivation than Laura does to pursue professional success, romantic relationships, or even ordinary friendships, and he decides to leave his home and family for what he thinks holds true "escape. " Tom never really does escape from his mother and sister as he's always thinking of them no matter how far he wanders from home.

Laura, the daughter and sister, in this play has developed the escape mechanism of illness when an event or situation appears to threaten her. She also created a more elaborate world in her assortment of delicate glass animals, a global into which she can withdraw safely and where she finds comfort and meaning that real life does not appear to offer. Reality has definitely the weakest grasp on Laura as she lives in a private world populated by glass animals; objects that like Laura's emotional and inner life are incredibly and dangerously delicate. She actually is too shy and lacks self-confidence to cope with real life. She talks of her glass animals as if these are real beings and her only other interest is within playing old records. When it finally seems as if she may be peeking out of her fictional world through Jim's words, she withdraws and becomes frail and limp once more after Jim breaks her heart a second time. Realizing that she'll continually be the broken "unicorn" in society, she gives up looking to please her mother and being normal.

Amanda lives in a global based largely on her behalf imagined past. Elaborate additions may have been made to those memories of her younger years, nonetheless they serve to hide her from the truth of the lost husband and two equally lost children. Amanda tries to relive her past through Laura, and denies anything she will not want to accept. Unlike her children, she is partial to real-world values and longs for social and financial success, yet her attachment to these values is precisely what prevents her from perceiving lots of truths about her life. She cannot accept that she should be anything apart from the pampered belle she was previously, that Laura is peculiar, that Tom will not be the businessman she'd like, and this she herself might be in some ways in charge of the sorrows and flaws of her children. Amanda's retreat into illusion is in lots of ways more pathetic than her children's, because it is not really a willful imaginative construction but a distortion of reality. Amanda's great hope was that Laura would graduate from an enterprise school and pursue her career, but once she realizes that Laura was too shy even to attend classes, she pins all her hopes on finding Laura a husband. When that scheme fails too, all hope seems lost. A life of worry, monetary insecurity and dependency seems inevitable. Amanda lives inside her own world of illusions because the exterior world is too painful for her to face; a global in another time and place, her ideal world of the south during her youth. Tom tries to force her to face the reality that Laura differs than other girls, but Amanda won't accept this, all she can do is wish on the moon that things will come out just how she wants them to. Clearly, Amanda seems oblivious to Tom's unhappiness and Laura's painful shyness.

Each member of the Wingfield family had their own escape mechanism which they used to cover or escape from the real world. In the long run there is no escape from the family prison for any of the three characters. Disconnection from the outside world and an inability to exist alone terms, caused them frustration and disappointment. As imperfect or dull as life may seem, resorting to illusion and fictional escapes actually is a disabling.

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