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  1. Freudian approaches to Tennessee Williams(TM) Cat on a Hot Tin Roof

    The family especially Big Daddy and Maggie have doubts about Brick's sexuality and try to confront him about it. Brick: "You think that me and Skipper were a pair of dirty old men?" (pg 77). Symbolism definitely shown in 'Cat on a Hot Tin Roof', Bricks crutch can symbolise that he needs support, "Brick: no just give me my crutch" (27). The crutch can be seen as symbol that Brick is weak without skipper hence needs support. But it can also represent the fact that Brick has lost his masculinity 'Brick: I'm getting softer Maggie' (pg 31) and the crutch is his masculinity hence why he cannot go anywhere without it.

    • Word count: 939
  2. Cat on a Hot Tin Roof: What do you learn about Maggie from the way Tennessee Williams has presented her so far?

    For example, when Brick replies to Maggie's first line in the play, he says "Wha'd you say, Maggie?..." The stage directions prior to his response read "A tone of politely feigned interest, masking indifference or worse." Other stage directions describing his attitude to Maggie's statements share the same negativity; such as "Without interest.", "Wryly", "Absent mindedly", "Dreamily", followed by sarcastic comments. We also get the impression that Brick doesn't find his wife as attractive as other men do. On page twenty-one, Maggie says "Way he always drops his eyes down my body when I'm talkin' to him, drops his eyes to my boobs an' licks his old chops!"

    • Word count: 804
  3. A critic has written that a family at the centre of the party "is clothed with the atmosphere of the south as with a garment." How important is the setting of "Cat on a Hot Tin Roof" to the play's dramatic impact? You may consider:

    The bed sitting room in which the play is based around belongs to Brick and Maggie, two main characters. The irony of this being that bedrooms are assumed to be private and personal, yet it's the most invaded room in the house. A prime example being when Big Mama, Brick's mother enters the bedroom, commenting on how she "hates locked doors in a house..." Maggie's responds lightly by stating that "...people have got to have some moments of privacy," only to receive the invasive and ignorant reply "No, ma'am, not in my house." Even as early as Act One, we witness the couple's privacy being denied.

    • Word count: 1328
  4. 'Communication is - awful hand between people ... '. Consider the relevance of Brick's observation to the characterisation of "Cat on a Hot Tin Roof".

    Her husband Brick frustrates Maggie as he refuses to recognise her desire and passion towards him; Brick has this name by no coincidence alone, he is very 'detached' and when Maggie or anyone talks to him it is like talking to a 'Brick' wall. From what the reader is told, Brick had some sort of relationship with his friend Skipper in which they did communicate. Maggie comments on this and Brick gets very touchy; 'Gladys and I were just tagging along as if it was necessary to chaperone you!

    • Word count: 1601

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