Our Town

Essay by HellsingJunior High, 9th gradeA, May 2004

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Our Town strives to unite the 'earthly living' and the 'supernatural' into a time capsule of small-town life showing that life, in its greatness, is incomparable. I think this book/play was written to move its audience with this whole idea, instead of its individual dramas. It was written to explain that the town doesn't exist because of its wood frames or stone houses, but that the tempo of daily life from birth to love, friendships, responsibility, and even death have their own imaginative characters.

The setting of the play is set Grover's Corners and is actually the central character of the play. It is the most important aspect of revealing what most would call a 'simpleton life', and is in fact very vital because it sets the mood for this basic framed daily life.

The structure, or plot, of this play is broken up into three basic parts that together, model the theme of the play.

Act I opens with the beauty of birth and youth, Act II changes to marriage of the lovers, and then Act III finishes with a funeral and view on death. The idea of 'time' jumps strategically by several years in the play, but fills the needs for the larger theme of the play, life and eternity. This theme was hinted throughout the play, but does not become apparent until the funeral scene in Act III. Life then is revealed to the audience from beyond the grave and gives a new perspective that can become more understandable.

Opposite to most books I've read, I didn't get the feeling that the characters were the main focus of the plot. The characters were simple and uncomplicated, centering on the Webb and the Gibbs families who are neighbors in Grover's Corners. The play, more particularly, focuses on...