The Glass Menagerie

Essay by PaperNerd ContributorHigh School, 11th grade February 2001

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The Glass Menagerie: The Fine Line between Fact and Fiction in the Life of Tennessee Williams The Glass Menagerie is a play written by Tennessee Williams which was his first written success produced in Chicago in 1944. It tells of a family Amanda the mother, her son Tom and his sister Laura who lives in a small apartment during the Great Depression during the 1930's. America was not the only thing experiencing depression during those passing years. The Wingfield family Amanda, Tom and Laura were each in their own state of depression and each lived in their own glass menagerie. This paper will show how Williams displayed his own life experiences in the characters of The Glass Menagerie and how he used symbolism to express many hidden feelings and secrets of his life.

Tennessee Williams was born (Thomas Lanier) in Columbus, Mississippi on March 26, 1911. However, most records of his birth is recorded to be in the year 1914 because he entered a writing contest for writers under twenty five and he knocked three years off his age so he could enter.

After that he continued to use 1914 as his birth year. His parents, Cornelius and Edwina Williams lived on the Mississippi Delta with Edwina parents the Darkins. In William's book of Memoirs he states"� My first eight years of childhood in Mississippi were the most joyously innocent of my life, due to the beneficent home life provided by my beloved Darkin grandparents, with whom we lived"�(11). Living with his grandparents allowed Williams the needed space from his father Cornelius Coffin Williams.

Cornelius was a drummer in a Mississippi band and was a heavy drinker. His night job and his daytime job as a salesman kept him absent from the family very often. Then a brief career in...