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时间:2017-10-02 其他毕业论文 我要投稿


The history of American culture is actually a constantly changing one of Puritanism. American thoughts and ideas have changed a lot since Puritanism pervaded in America in the 17th century. Many Americans, especially the “petty bourgeois”, bore a combination of emotion and impulses of escaping from the reality. It has been rejected from awareness but still influences their behaviors, that is, they pervasively had an escape complex.
The Glass Menagerie, written by Tennessee Williams in 1945, reflects this phenomenon perfectly. The play is set in the apartment of the Wingfield family, housing Amanda Wingfield and her two children Tom and Laura. The father left many years ago, and is now represented only by a picture on the living-room wall. Jim O’Connor, the gentleman caller, is an emissary from the reality. None of the characters, even Jim himself, is capable of living entirely in the actual world. Their souls are all occupied by the escape complex, but in different ways.
Amanda lives “vitally in her illusions” of a past age of jonquils and gentlemen callers; Laura sits in a dream world with her glass collection and old records; Tom seeks adventure in movies and poems’ writing; Jim basks in the praises of his high school glory and dreams of a wonderful future. In their respective ways, they demonstrate their restlessness and exhibit a state of delusion that originates from their dissatisfaction with their lives. Escape is the only way they have to relieve themselves from the pain of alienation and the pressure of the reality.

Key Words: Puritanism; escape complex; loneliness; alienation; pipe dream

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