Her problem is neither that she is insensitive nor that she is an overprotective mother attempting to keep her children under her wings. Wingfield, a bona fide gentleman caller, was hand-picked by Amanda to marry. He was also an irresponsible pleasure-seeker who later deserted the family for his own enjoyment of life. Amanda is too nostalgically myopic, however, to see the portentous implication and too hopelessly dazzled by its glamour to admit its destructive potential.
While Williams is best known as one of the greatest American dramatists of the post-World War II era, he also wrote short stories that explore isolation and miscommunication within families and small groups of misfits and loners. These stories have often been viewed as simply apprentice works for his dramas, developing themes and characters that he later incorporated into his plays, but a number of critics have argued that they deserve to be considered on their own merits and have drawn comparisons between them and the fiction of Edgar Allan Poe and Thomas Mann.
Biographical Information Born in Columbus, Mississippi, Williams was raised by his mother and maternal grandparents at an Episcopal rectory in Clarksdale, Mississippi; his father, a traveling salesman, was frequently absent.
After a near-fatal bout of diphtheria, Williams remained a sickly child in the constant care of his overprotective mother. He also developed a close attachment to his older sister, Rose, who suffered from schizophrenia and, later, mental deterioration after an unsuccessful lobotomy.
In his family moved to St. Louis, where his father was transferred to assume a managerial position.
To relieve his sense of isolation in his new environment, Williams began to write poetry and short fiction. In he entered the University of Missouri, though he was forced by his father to return home after failing ROTC in his third year.
He took a menial job in a shoe warehouse and wrote short fiction and essays until suffering a nervous breakdown in During his convalescence, he collaborated on the comedy Cairo, Shanghai, Bombay!
After that experience, he decided to devote himself to writing. He began taking classes at Washington University in St. Louis, but subsequently transferred to the University of Iowa. That same year, he received a Rockefeller Foundation fellowship, which allowed him to write his play Battle of Angels In the early s Williams was offered a salaried position with Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer in Hollywood; he produced several unaccepted screenplays, and was released at the end of his contract.
In the late s Williams underwent intensive psychoanalysis to treat his depression, providing material for Suddenly Last SummerSweet Bird of Youthand Period of Adjustment After Night of the Iguanahis last notable success, Williams continued to produce numerous dramatic works of diminishing critical importance until the end of his life.
His mental instability and increasing dependence upon drugs and alcohol worsened during the next two decades. In he was briefly hospitalized following another mental breakdown. On February 24,in New York City, he accidentally choked to death on the cap of a medicine bottle.
Critics identify the key thematic concerns in his fiction as decay, disease, dysfunction, abnormality, and the destructiveness of desire.
After losing his arm in a car accident, Oliver must give up his career as a champion boxer and degenerates into a male hustler and alcoholic.
He eventually murders a man who had paid him to participate in a pornographic movie. Attracted to him, Burns returns again and again, forming a sadomasochistic relationship with the man.
With his consent, Burns is tortured and eventually killed and eaten by the masseur, who gathers his bones in a sack and throws them into a lake. Critics perceive this story as an allegory for spiritual alienation and isolation.
When his one comfort, his relationship with a young widow and her daughter, fails, he is bereft of hope and falls back into his dysfunctional relationship with his wife. Certainly his contribution as a short story writer has been overshadowed by his fame as a playwright, and scholars have often focused on how Williams developed his plays from ideas he introduced in his short stories.Get this from a library!
Tennessee Williams: a collection of critical essays. [Stephen Sadler Stanton;] -- A collection of critical essays analyzing his work, sensitivity to dialogue, his comic talent and theatrical flair. Critical Essays on TENNESSEE WILLIAMS edited by ROBERT A.
MARTIN G. K. Hall & Co. An Imprint of Simon & Schuster Macmillan New York Prentice Hall International London Mexico City New Delhi Singapore Sydney Toronto. General Editor's Note xi Publisher's Note xiii Acknowledgments xv Plays and Short-Story Collections xvii.
Get this from a library! Critical essays on Tennessee Williams. [Robert A Martin;].
plombier-nemours.com: Critical Essays on Tennessee Willaims: Tennessee Williams (Critical Essays on American Literature Series) (): Robert A. Martin: Books3/5(1). Critical Essays on Tennessee Willaims: Tennessee Williams (Critical Essays on American Literature Series) 1st Edition by Robert A.
Martin (Editor)Reviews: 1. May 11, · Commentary and archival information about Tennessee Williams from The New York Times. Recalling the original critical response to pathbreaking productions directed by .