The Stronger by August Strindberg is a play that is filled with irony. One of the first things noticed in this play is that the characters have no names, nor are they labeled by any type of status. Rather than having names like most plays, the two characters are differentiated by the letters "X" and "Y." Another ironic thing about this play, is how it is written; the dialogue of the play is not evenly spoken. Instead of the two characters conversing between one another, the play is written almost like a monologue where only Mrs. X speaks. Because Mrs. X is the only speaker, one would think that she is "the stronger," but ironically, she is not.
One reason Mrs. X is not thought to be the stronger is that she goes back to her husband after she concludes that an affair had existed ironically thinking that the affair will not disable her marriage. The play implies that Mrs. X believes that the affair has and will somehow continue to make her marriage stronger. She says, "that only gave me a stronger hold on my husband," but actually her knowledge of the affair will eventually weaken the relationship. Knowing that her trust has been abused will normally cause her to question her husband's devotion: Were there other affairs? Is he cheating now? If so, is she someone I know? If not, will he cheat again? These are possible questions that will remain unanswered because Mrs. X has no intention of confronting her husband. This is a fact because in the last line of the play Mrs. X says, "Now I am going home - to love him." This quote also makes it seem like she is going home to live her normal life as if the affair never occurred, but making herself believe that it has disappeared will not solve anything. She believes th...
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...would one put oneself in the situation to be vulnerable to such false mentality? It is because emotionally Mrs. X is weak, so to protect herself from any pain, she thinks of a way to logically persuade her mind and her emotions that she is the stronger, but she is not.
Mrs. X can not be the stronger because Miss Y clearly shows more strength by saying nothing. Miss Y shows this strength by simply sitting there enduring Mrs. X's accusations and abuse. She sat there and faced it all when she could have easily matched Mrs. X's actions. Miss Y could have refused to listen to Mrs. X's accusations, or she could have made a scene by responding to Mrs. X's abuse. Instead of showing signs weakness, Miss Y chose to say nothing because there really was nothing that could be said to make the situation any better. By choosing to do so, Miss Y proves that she is the stronger.
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