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Spring Awakening

analytical Essay
2657 words
2657 words
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“Ignorance and innocence are not always synonymous” (Ziegler 5) is the moral of Frank Wedekind’s play, Frühlings Erwachen, which was first performed in 1906. Wedekind employs satire to warn against the dangers of lack of education for the youth of the play. Spring Awakening, as it is known to English audiences, tells the story of three teenagers, who are being awakened to their sexual desires. However, they are entirely unprepared to deal with these desires. Thus, “the awakening leads to death” (Boa, Spring Awakening 27) in the case of two of the characters and leads the third character to become “imprisoned as a moral degenerate.” (Ziegler 5) In 2007, Spring Awakening: A New Musical, based on Wedekind’s play, premiered on Broadway. It went on to win eight Tony Awards. This musical took most of the original scenes and interlaced modern, pop musical numbers into it. The songs served as a way to show the modernity of the issues raised in the play and to show the innermost thoughts of the characters.
In the original play, the problem lies with the parents, who have failed to educate their children on matters of sex and their bodies. This leaves their children ill prepared to deal with their sexual urges for one another. The adults attempt to mold their children into their own “ideal self-image” (Boa, Spring Awakening 35-36) They do all of this “in the name of morality, but in reality to satisfy personal desires.” (Boa, Spring Awakening 35-36) One could make the argument that the tragedy of the play occurs because of the adults. Moritz commits suicide only after his father disowns him for failing in school. Wendla dies at the hand of an abortionist only after her mother forces her to get an abortion for fear of what people would th...

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...Inc., 1987. 26-54. Print.
Boa, Elizabeth. "Wedekind and the 'Woman Question'." Boa, Elizabeth. The Sexual Circus: Wedekind's Theatre of Subversion. New York : Basil Blackwell Inc. , 1987. 167-202. Print.
Sater, Steven and Duncan Sheik. Spring Awakening: A New Musical. New York: Theatre Communications Group, Inc. , 2007. Print.
Sater, Steven. "Preface ." Sater, Steven and Duncan Sheik. Spring Awakening: A New Musical. New York: Theatre Communications Group, Inc. , 2007. VII-XV. Print.
Spring Awakening: A New Musical. By Steven Sater and Duncan Sheik. Perf. Lea Michele, Jonathan Groff and John Gallagher Jr. Eugene O'Neil Theatre, New York. 2 February 2007. Video.
Wedekind, Frank. Frühlings Erwachen (Spring Awakening). Start Publishing LLC, 2012. eBook.
Ziegler, Francis J. "A Poem for Prudes." Wedekind, Frank. Spring Awakening . Start Publishing LLC, 2012. 5-15. eBook.

In this essay, the author

  • Analyzes the moral of frank wedekind's play, frühlings erwachen, which employs satire to warn against the dangers of lack of education for the youth.
  • Analyzes how in the original play, the problem lies with the parents, who have failed to educate their children on matters of sex and their bodies.
  • Analyzes how moritz commits suicide after his father disowns him for failing in school, wendla dies at the hand of an abortionist only after her mother forces her to get abortion for fear of what people would think of the family if her child were to have a child.
  • Explains that they believe in instinct. they believe that if one brought up male and female cats together, and kept them separated from the outside world, the she cat would become pregnant.
  • Analyzes how melchior uses knowledge that he has attained by reading books rather than being taught to have sex with wendla, which results in her pregnancy. moritz, in the fourth scene of the first act, says, "if i hadn't been promoted i would have shot myself."
  • Analyzes how the broadway musical took the original play and added music to it. the dialogue is set in the late 1800’s, whereas, the songs jump into modern day.
  • Analyzes how wendla and her mother argue about how to conceive a child. she sings mama who bore me and all of the girls join in.
  • Analyzes how melchior and moritz are introduced to the reader in the next scene. they are asked to continue a recitation of virgil's aeneid.
  • Analyzes how melchior points out that history and science don't matter. the adults of the play blindly ignore what history, science, and bible tell them.
  • Explains that the adults want the children to blindly believe what they are told through school and through the bible.
  • Analyzes how melchior is lamenting the fact that the adults see someone with their own thoughts as a threat. this is partly why all adult roles are played by the same actor or actress.
  • Analyzes how the bitch of living introduces the rest of the male characters, all of which are struggling with their sexual desires.
  • Opines that these boys are doomed to become their parents if they continue on the path that they are on. they all sense that there is something more to life, but none of them know how to achieve it.
  • Analyzes how the play deals with physical and sexual abuse of martha and ilse.
  • Analyzes how melchior and wendla are fascinated by their abuse, which leads to one of the most disturbing scenes in the play.
  • Explains that melchior and wendla are numb. they want to feel something for once in their lives, even if it is pain.
  • Analyzes how moritz's song, and then there were none, shows the audience exactly how he is feeling after every adult in his life has turned on him.
  • Analyzes how melchior is distraught about what happened with wendla and is a much less sympathetic character without this song. he feels as if there is something wrong with him, but he does not know what to do.
  • Narrates how wendla stumbles upon melchior in the hayloft after the mirror-blue night. they have not seen each other since he beat her.
  • Analyzes how neither melchior nor wendla truly understands what occurred between them in the precious scene. they know that they are connected.
  • Analyzes how the musical differs drastically from the original play. in the play, wendla is raped, and she eventually says yes to melchior's advances.
  • Analyzes moritz's swan song, don't do sadness/blue wind, where he is about to shoot himself when ilse comes up behind him.
  • Analyzes how ilse is trying to show moritz that it is not that bad. there will be bad times and good times in one’s life, but they will pass as the seasons do.
  • Explains boa, elizabeth, the sexual circus: wedekind's theatre of subversion.
  • Describes boa, elizabeth, the sexual circus: wedekind's theatre of subversion.
  • Describes sater, steven, and duncan sheik's spring awakening: a new musical.
  • Explains sater, steven, and duncan sheik. spring awakening: a new musical.
  • Presents spring awakening: a new musical by steven sater and duncan sheik. perf. lea michele, jonathan groff and john gallagher jr.
  • Explains ziegler, francis j., "a poem for prudes." wedekind, frank. spring awakening, start publishing llc, 2012.
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