The Dramatic Form and Riders to the Sea

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Drama is a play that is written for theatre production. In drama the characters use direct through the voice of a narrator. The authors of dramatic pieces use dialogue to tell their story. Therefore, the characters in a play, tell the story using speech. Actors impersonate the characters by reciting the words that are written in the play. For example Maurya the main character in Riders to the Sea, says the closing words to her son before he left home: “You’d do right to leave that rope, Bartley, hanging by the boards…for it’s a deep grave we’ll make him by the grace of God.” The actors must also follow the author’s directions. She kneels down and the curtain falls slowly. (Clugston, 2010) The theme of this play is the sea. The powerful, life sustaining and life claiming, forceful sea is the main theme. Cathleen mentioned, “It’s the life of a young man to be going to the sea.” While on the other hand her mother lamenting over her dead husband and six dead sons said, “They’re all gone now, and there isn’t anything more the sea can do to me.” (Clugston, 2010) The entire play/plot is really about the paradoxical sea and the way of life for the island’s men, who are fishermen and boaters. The sea is the only connection to mainland Ireland from the island where they live. These poor people survive on the proceeds from their fishing industry. The main character/protagonist, Maurya (islanders pronouncing/spelling for Maria), her name means bitter sea. I believe the author meticulously chose that name for his main character to further strengthen the theme. The play is set in a fisherman’s “Cottage kitchen, with nets, oil skins spinning wheel, some new boards standing by the wall, etc.(Clugston, 2010) The characters are humble islanders whose life and subsistence depend on the sea around them. The tone carries an overbearing mournful sadness of a widow who lost her husband, father-in law and six sons who all died by drowning. “I’ve had a husband,...
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