|Type of paper:
|Character analysis Dramatic literature Family drama
Question: Compare and contrast the characters of EITHER Mrs. Lyons and Mrs. Johnstone OR Edward and Mickey, commenting specifically on how they represent the people in the time and place in which the play is set.
The play looks at the lives of fraternal twin brothers who were separated at birth - Eddie and Mickey. The entire play focuses on the two brothers, painting a vivid picture of how the two grew up given the fact that they were brought up in two different worlds. Michael was brought up in the Johnstone family, which was a low-income family under Mrs. Johnstone, who was a single mother raising eight children. Edward or Eddie had been given away by Mrs. Johnstone and was raised by the Lyons family, which was wealthy. The lives of these two characters have been used to reflect the place and live people when the play was set used to live. Eddie would grow up to become a councilor while his brother would go on to become poor and employed. Eventually, these two fall in love with the same girl, which leads to their death.
The two brothers are vital in the formulation of the different contexts highlighted in the play. One such context is the social context and differences. By ensuring that the two brothers grew up in two different social worlds, Russell can portray the social differences that existed during this particular period. The two boys went to very different schools, which affected the kind of people they would eventually grow up to become. Russell was clearly indicated how factors such as education affect society by creating divisions in society in terms of social class. This is evident in the paths the two boys eventually take where one becomes successful in society and the other landing in prison. The boys also lived in different houses as well as living different lives. By showing these differences, Russell can show the double standard in that area where the wealthy people succeeded only because they could afford to work in good places as compared to the poor people.
One of the main themes that are brought out by the two characters is that of social class and inequality. Russell lived in an age where social inequalities stood out and therefore, in his play, he wanted to bring out these differences using Eddie and Michael by walking the audience through the lives the two characters lived. During this period, the rate of unemployment was very high, and therefore, he wanted to show this theme through the eyes of one of the main characters. The difference between the two families - the Lyons and the Johnstone's - was evident, and it was interesting to see the impact the two lives had on the Michael and Eddie in terms of social class. From the beginning of the play, the differences between these families and the impact it would have on these children were evident as early as seven years old. As they grow up, different opportunities are only presented to Eddie but not Mickey.
The play has managed to create an interrelationship between lyrics that help bring out the story that revolves between the two twins. Although the play was a musical, how the texts in the play are portrayed help the reader understand the story surrounding Eddie and Michael. The story of the two young people is brought out in a way that the audience is able to understand the various themes that stand out in the play, especially that of social inequalities. By providing the audience with lyrics and texts that appeal to it, it is easy to follow the entire story and understand the circumstances surrounding the two young men. In the first act, the audience is introduced to the families the two young boys would grow up into. The Johnstone's family was one that was poor and characterized by seven other children. How the audience is introduced to this family is done in a way that we can understand the magnitude of poverty. This is the same thing the audience is introduced to in terms of the Lyons family, and by doing so, we can clearly see the differences.
By going through the entire play and understanding the two main characters, Eddie and Michael. The two help us understand the setting where the play was developed. First, the two are brought up in different families that help the audience understand the kind of setting and environment the play was made in. Edwards life and family help the audience understand how poverty was part of society as well as how it affected the families and children that were poor. He becomes unemployed, and he is forced to turn to crime. Eventually, Eddie lands in jail because of the background he grows up in. Michael, on the other hand, belongs to the wealthy call of people, and therefore, he has unlimited options that help him get a good job. The social differences that existed during this period are clear and evident throughout the play.
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