• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

Staging implications which make 'The Glass Menagerie'.

Extracts from this document...


In this essay I will be looking at the staging implications which make 'The Glass Menagerie'. A playwright called Tennessee Williams in 1945 wrote this play. He was born in 1911 and grew up as an American playwright whose dramas portrayed loneliness and the isolation of life. 'The Glass Menagerie' is a story about the narrator, Tom, who recreates the memories the memories of his sister Laura and his mother Amanda. Laura, often in the story, escapes into a fantasy world of old phonograph records and the glass animals in her 'menagerie'. Amanda's harsh practicality is balanced by romanticised memories of her Southern girlhood. Tom dreams of adventure and finally runs away from his family to join the merchant marines. According to Tom, 'The Glass Menagerie' is a memory play the whole story is shaped and based on what he remembers from his past. The play's lack of realism (no props) and its frequent use of music are all due to its origins in memory. The scene at the dinner table for example where they are using their imagination for the cutlery and food are products of the imagination that must convince their audience that they are something else by being realistic. ...read more.


Louis. In the stage directions Tennessee Williams draws a vivid picture of the place. It's cramped and dark, almost like a jail cell. You can't tell it apart from the thousands of other apartments occupied by people trapped in dull and joyless lives. No one in the family wants to live there. But poverty forces them to. This is why "escape" is a major theme in the play. In the apartment there are the usual rooms and the fire escape, which Tom uses to enter and exit the place. There is a smiling photo of Mr. Wingfield displayed on the wall. It is strange that Amanda, who constantly ridicules her husband, keeps it there. Perhaps Amanda keeps the photograph as a remembrance from her past. To may see it as a reminder that escape is possible since his father did it. Tennessee Williams says the screen is used for, '...bearing images or titles' and the purpose of it is to, '...give accent to certain values in each scene' The screen is used to emphasise the importance of something referred to by the characters. It is one of the play's most unique stylistic features is the use of an onstage screen on which words and images relevant to the story are projected. ...read more.


The glass unicorn in Laura's collection-significantly, her favourite figure-represents her strange character. As Jim points out, unicorns are "extinct" in modern times and are lonesome as a result of being different from other horses. Laura too is unusual, lonely, and doesn't seem to fit in with the life she lives. The event involving the glass unicorn personifies what happens to her in scene seven. When Jim dances with and then kisses Laura, the unicorn's horn breaks off, and it becomes just another horse. Jim's advances contribute to Laura's 'change', making her seem more like just another girl, but the violence with which this 'change' is thrown upon her means that Laura cannot become normal without somehow shattering. Eventually, Laura gives Jim the unicorn as a "souvenir." Without its horn, the unicorn is more appropriate for him than for her, and the broken figurine represents all that he has taken from her and destroyed in her. I have come to the conclusion that the staging implications of 'The Glass Menagerie' are the foundation of which this play stands on. Because it is a play this is clear because it is a play we can also read what the screen devices show and see when the lights change, for example, and for what reasons. The music, light and screen give us an idea of how the play is set up and sets the mood of the whole scene. ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our GCSE The Glass Menagerie section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related GCSE The Glass Menagerie essays

  1. The Glass menagerie - 'Being a memory play, it is dimly lighted, it is ...

    She appears to be modeled upon Williams' sister Rose. Laura's nickname 'Blue Roses' is evidence of this connection. Laura is 'crippled' and has a brace on one leg, a fact clearly based on reality and not manufactured by Tom's memory.

  2. Important Symbols and Themes of The Glass Menagerie

    just as Laura has shed some of her shyness and become more normal. When she hands the broken unicorn to Jim, this may represent Laura handing over her broken love to Jim, as Jim has revealed that he is engaged to be married.

  1. What kind of Play is The Glass Menagerie?

    How indeed can you look to the future in a play which is based wholly on looking back? This brings us to the final section of the lecture the dramatic technique of the play. Dramatic Techniques * Ibsen and Brecht provided the models for the depiction of social problems in drama.

  2. The Glass Menagerie. How does Amanda's Southern Background affect her present life and her ...

    It would seem she is more concerned about what she wants Alura to do than what Laura wants for herself. Her upbringing also affects her way of thinking about men and woman's different purposes in life. She talks about how Laura should be provided for because she is a woman and how woman should 'entertain' their gentlemen callers.

  1. Relationships in The Glass Menagerie, by Tennessee Williams.

    On the other hand, we can say that its also Amanda's fault. She doesn't knowledge Laura's problems- mentally, physically and emotionally. "...my hopes and ambitions for you..." This shows us that Amanda controls her daughter, and she is way too much 'into' Laura.

  2. Main Themes in The Glass Menagerie

    Thus, in their exploitation of illusions to cope with reality, the Wingfields become a kind of microcosm for the entire country. "The Glass Menagerie" identifies the conquest of reality by illusion as a huge and growing aspect of the human condition in its time.

  1. Discuss TennesseeWilliam's use of imagery and symbolism in The Glass Menagerie.

    I mean that as soon as Laura has got somebody to take care of her, married, a home of her own, independent- why, then you'll be free. Therefore, this makes Jim Tom's only resort in successfully completing a clean escape. The central symbol of the play is Laura's Glass Menagerie.

  2. The Glass Menagerie.

    The play is set in this half-light, with the lighting changing to reflect the mood of the action on stage. This emotional colouring is most certainly memory, intended to reflect the feelings of the characters and mood of the scene, rather than the actual time of day.

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work