The Glass Menagerie

Comparison of Settings between The Glass Menagerie and August: Osage County 12th Grade

The Glass Menagerie by Tennessee Williams and August: Osage County by Tracy Letts are two emotionally-charged plays about dysfunctional families in the 20th century. While the plays take place in very different settings and time periods, both households are affected similarly by their settings. In both plays, the setting seems boring and hopeless to some characters, causing them to escape by any means possible - both physically and emotionally.


The Glass Menagerie revolves around three main characters living in New Orleans - Tom, the warehouse worker protagonist who wants desperately to escape his overbearing household and find adventure; Laura, his ‘crippled’ sister who emotionally escapes by collecting glass animals and listening to old records; and Amanda, their seemingly overbearing mother. Amanda’s attempts to push her children towards success usually backfire, leading to Laura’s typing school failure and ‘gentleman caller’ who turned out to already be engaged. For most of the play, Tom drinks and sees movies as forms of escape. By the end, he leaves and joins the Merchant Marines - similar to his father, who abruptly abandoned the family when Tom and Laura were children.


August: Osage County takes place in rural Osage...

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