Timidity In The Glass Menagerie

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What is the relationship between confidence and timidity? A lady named Laura with an unusual personality is presented in Tennessee Williams’ play The Glass Menagerie. Laura’s family characterizes her as being nervous in front of people. The Wingfield family is very dysfunctional but typical at the same time. Amanda, Laura’s mother, is worried about the future of her children; although this feeling of protection is not enough to perceive Laura’s need for additional attention. Tom, Laura’s brother, is preoccupied with his job and he is busy thinking about how to change his life. Laura struggles to fit into society until she decides she is better off if she stays at home. No one notices how strange and unhappy this is for her except for an unexpected…show more content…
When Laura leaves school, she hides it from Amanda. As Amanda is reproaching her, Laura explains to her that “[She] couldn’t face it” meaning that she could not tell her mother that she had quit (Williams 931). Laura does not trust her family enough to tell them what she thinks and why she constantly stops doing activities. She is even scared of talking to herself about it. Laura is insecure and she feels everyone hates her. She even says to Amanda, “I’m crippled!” (Williams 932). The escape Laura uses is a glass collection. In a conversation she has with Jim, she tells him, “Glass is something you have to take good care of” (Williams 966). Laura identifies herself with the glass. They represent her fragility. She is frustrated and scared of showing herself to the…show more content…
Laura manifests her personality in the many occasions she helps Amanda and Tom to be content. She does not care for what her family says about her but more about fixing the relationship they have. This is noticeable in many parts of the play. For example, in one of the scenes, Laura tells Tom after him fighting with Amanda, “Tom, speak to Mother this morning. Make up with her, apologize, speak to her!” (Williams 938). Laura wants them to be talking again because that fight makes her mother anxious. Laura also feels a lot of pressure from her mother because she wants Laura to behave in a desire manner. Laura expresses that when she says to Amanda “Mother: I’m just not popular like you were in Blue Mountain….Mother’s afraid I’m going to be an old maid” (Williams 928). Amanda pressures Laura in many occasions and she tells Laura to be successful; this something that every mother wants for their children. However, Amanda is not paying attention to the signs that Laura is presenting. Amanda knows that Laura has a “little defect” but she prefers to avoid it rather than deal with it. For Amanda, the solution is to get Laura married. Tom also says that Laura is different. However, it is Jim who makes Laura understand that this uniqueness is what is more beautiful about her because everyone is alike but her. Laura is one in a
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