Honors American Studies
31 March 2010
Cat on a Hot Tin Roof Essay
In the play, Cat on a Hot Tin Roof, Tennessee Williams mentions explores realism on a new dimension. He mentions controversial themes such as suicide, sex, marital issues, alcoholism, and greed. Although Williams experienced his fair share of drama in his lifetime, he is able to bring together many of the issues that many Americans were experiencing in their own homes. A critic once said, “His plays deal with a serious them- a them as in self-pity, the persistence of memory that holds people in its grip, and will not let them get on with their lives”. In this play, he specifically relates this self-pity and haunting memories to one of the main characters, Brick. He faces many struggles with his past, and his future that inhibit him from forming relationships with others. Brick lives his life with guilt and self-pity and in turn shuts out the people that love him the most.
Williams suffered from many of the same illnesses that Brick endures in the play. Brick is charming, athletic and hansom and has a beautiful wife who loves him, but unfortunately his days are driven by alcohol. When Brick was younger, he was an outstanding athlete and played football for a professional team. He was very successful, and is able to earn a good salary doing what he loves. His best friend Skipper however was not as talented as Brick, but they would support each other in any way they could. Unfortunately, Brick and Skipper were inseparable and Brick’s new wife, Maggie, was not pleased with this. She hated the lifestyle that they were living, always moving towns and never settling down, and how little attention she received from Brick when he was with Skipper. She takes matters into her own hands and decides to prove that Skipper is not a good friend for Brick, and seduces Skipper. Ultimately nothing happens between them, but Skipper calls Brick and informs him of the mistake he...