D3 Nursalim

D3 Nursalim - Stephanie Nursalim English 2 Essay#3...

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Stephanie Nursalim English 2 Essay #3 Professor Schamp In our lives, we face countless obstacles, but everyone has different ways of dealing with their problems. Some might choose to find a solution to solve their issues while others might choose to escape from them entirely. As defined by the online Oxford English Dictionary, escapism is “the tendency to seek distraction and relief from unpleasant realities, especially by seeking entertainment or engaging in fantasy”. In the play, The Glass Menagerie, Tennessee Williams presents four characters, the three Wingfields, Amanda, Laura, and Tom, and Tom’s friend, Jim, who constantly try to escape facing the harsh realities of life. Instead of dealing with their immediate problems, they have chosen to avoid their troubles and live in the fantasy worlds they have created. After her husband deserted her and their two children, Laura and Tom, Amanda is tremendously hurt – emotionally and financially. Her dream of having a perfect life is shattered but she remains in constant denial. She hopes that Laura will be able to get married to someone rich so that they will be taken care of for the rest of their lives. Moreover, she refuses to see the problems in her children. Laura is extremely self-conscious and unable to interact with others because she is ashamed of being crippled. Laura chooses to live in her own world with her glass animal collection instead of going to school. Tom detests his life as well as his job in the warehouse so he continuously seeks ways to escape by smoking, drinking, writing poems, and going to the movies. Tom’s friend, Jim, also tries to escape for he is unsatisfied with how his life turned out to be and he always looks back to how he is when he was in high school. Although these four characters are alive and well, their lives are at a standstill; they are afraid to face the
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cruelties of reality and they have each found their own ways to escape from it by living in the dream worlds they have created. Both Amanda and Jim long for the past, while Tom’s desire to live a life of his own and Laura’s unwillingness to look beyond her disability chain them to unreal worlds built by their desires that give them fleeting, superficial happiness. Laura is aware of her disability and she knows that there is nothing she can do to change it. She “can face the present- but only to the extent that she recognizes the truth about herself in that present” (Bluefarb 5). She tells her mother, “I’m- crippled!” (Williams 1730; sc 2) However, she does not make an effort to try to be normal. Instead, Laura lives in constant fear of being denigrated as inferior due to her disability, and thus, “she retreats from all human contact” (Through a Glass Starkly, 209). Her mother, Amanda, tried sending her to business school but Laura threw up during her typing speed test because she could not take the pressure. In addition, Laura has no friends with her introverted personality. Her mother attempted to invite a
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D3 Nursalim - Stephanie Nursalim English 2 Essay#3...

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