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Essay on Our Town by Thorton Wilder

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Somewhere among the grassy hills of New Hampshire lies a very small town called Grover’s Corners. This village at least exists in a play, “Our Town”, written by Thornton Wilder. “Our Town” is a play that is divided into three acts, “Daily Life”, “Love and Marriage”, and “Life and Death”, accordingly. The play, by each act, describes the world of the very small town of Grover’s Corners and the people living and communicating in that secluded town. Unlike other plays, however, “Our Town” has no scenery when performed. There is only a trellis, table and chairs for those “who feel like they have to have scenery”, says the Stage Manager, who acts like a narrator. Everything else, including eating a meal, is pantomimed. Grover’s Corners is very much alike, but also different from the other small town called Newburgh, the space where this story is born, and the projected comparison of this essay. Surprising things can appear when comparing any two things, even a fictional town to an actual one.
Grover’s Corners and Newburgh surprisingly have several things in common, although it does not seem like it at first. The similarities emerge if one looks closely, like finding gold or gems under a mountain of rocks and debris. Geographically, Grover’s Corners and Newburgh are both rather diminutive settlements lost in a sea of larger cities and the broad, spacious fields of the United States of America. They are both surrounded by rolling hills and agricultural farms to some extent, and they are located in northern states. They each have a rich history, dating back to the Civil War, and they have a railroad and other important buildings that a town requires: a post office, the town hall, a jail, a school and so forth. Fossils dating before anth...


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...er’s Corners, New Hampshire. Grover’s Corners has everything that a rural community should have, like Newburgh, but it is less populated than said namesake. Newburgh is modern, but the Grover’s Corners people are considerate and thankful of the Earth (realized in Act III). “Our Town’s” setting sets the mood of the entire story and plays the role of symbolism in a certain sense. In pertinence to today, “Our Town” is considered a “true American play” and it is highly unique for the lack of scenery and props in its performances. A personal opinion would approve this, because it lets someone living today know what it was like to have lived in early 20th century America, and in a secluded community nonetheless. “Our Town”, however fictional it may be, is a touching play that still relates to and identifies with a similar town, despite the great distance in between.




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