forwards throughout the play, which is another expressionistic technique. The use of dead characters speaking in act 3 of the play is also another evidence of expressionism found in ‘Our Town’.
Subscribe to view the full document.
Symbolism is another style seen in the play which attempts to present truth by imaginative techniques expressing the artist’s particular visions or feelings, rather than external reality. It usually contains lots of symbolic imagery, which is hoped to suggest and evoke deeper unconscious emotions and responses from the audience. In ‘Our town’, the use of minimal props and no set is directed deliberately in order to engage the imaginations of the audience and let them focus on the play and the characters. The use of the hymn, “blessed be the tie that binds” in all three acts of the play represents the importance of common humanity. Wilder extends this symbol further by having a constant reference to the stars, which is a universal symbol of common humanity and existence. There is also a concern with spirituality and this is contrasted with physical existence of characters in Acts 1 & 2 with the metaphysical in act 3. Another symbolism technique in the play would be the references to the weather, which contribute to the mood of the play, especially in Act 3, where the rain represents loss and grief, which is contrasted to the beautiful moonlit night in Act 1 which could represent peace, happiness and quiet. Character DescriptionsStage ManagerThe Stage Manager is the host of the play and the narrator. He exercises control over the action, cues the other character, interrupts scenes with his own comments, and informs the audience of events and objects that they cannot see. He also occasionally assumes other roles of the characters in the play. By interacting with both the world of the audience and the worldof the play’s characters, he breaks the fourth wall and occupies a godlike position of authority. George GibbsGeorge is Dr. And Mrs. Gibb’s son. He is a decent, honest young man, who is a high school baseball star planning to attend the State Agriculture School after high school. His romance with Emily Webb and later marriage to her is central to the play’s narrative action. Thornton Wilder uses George and Emily’s relationship to consider questions of love and marriage.Emily WebbEmily is Mr. and Mrs. Webb’s daughter and Wally’s older sister. She is George’s schoolmate and next door neighbour, who later becomes his wife. She is a very bright student and a diligent daughter. When she dies in childbirth and joins the group of dead souls in the local cemetery, she attempts to return to the world of the living. She then realises that human life isprecious because it fleets very fast, and this is the central message of the play.
As a current student on this bumpy collegiate pathway, I stumbled upon Course Hero, where I can find study resources for nearly all my courses, get online help from tutors 24/7, and even share my old projects, papers, and lecture notes with other students.
Temple University Fox School of Business ‘17, Course Hero Intern
I cannot even describe how much Course Hero helped me this summer. It’s truly become something I can always rely on and help me. In the end, I was not only able to survive summer classes, but I was able to thrive thanks to Course Hero.
University of Pennsylvania ‘17, Course Hero Intern
The ability to access any university’s resources through Course Hero proved invaluable in my case. I was behind on Tulane coursework and actually used UCLA’s materials to help me move forward and get everything together on time.