Denial in The Iceman Cometh Essay

Denial in The Iceman Cometh Essay

Length: 1527 words (4.4 double-spaced pages)

Rating: Strong Essays

Open Document

Essay Preview

Denial in The Iceman Cometh
Denial is the refusal to admit the truth. It is the refusal to accept or acknowledge the reality or validity of a thing or idea. Many characters in The Iceman Cometh suffer from denial and false hope. O'Neill places these characters in the appropriate setting in which they are able to fantasize about their dreams. Amidst the drunken and misguided characters, O'Neill presents a few that the reader builds hope and sympathy for. Each character uses a pipe dream in order to be able to become blind to their downfalls and to reality. In the bar setting, characters in Eugene O'Neill's The Iceman Cometh portray the theme of denial by embracing pipe dreams.
Harry Hope is the elderly owner of a saloon and rooming house. The narrow five-story structure presents the ideal setting for self-destruction. The characters come here in order to "drink away their problems" (O'Neill 597). All of the characters in the novel come to Harry Hope's bar as an escape. They manage somehow to "remain drunk and delude themselves"(Gagey 332), "with a few harmless pipe dreams about their yesterdays and tomorrows" (O'Neill 620). They feel sheltered and protected from the real world while in the bar. They do not have to face reality here. "The dreamers have come to Hope's because, ostensibly, they are failures in the outside world. What lies outside is a world without value, a hostile society to which no man can possibly belong, and from which they must take refuge" (Bogard 54). The characters deny the fact that there is a real world out there, in where they may succeed. They are much more content taking refuge in the bar, where they do not have to strive for or work at anything. They can just wallow...


... middle of paper ...


...s them. They are more content by drinking their sorrows away in Harry Hope's bar.


Bibliography

Bogard, Travis. "The Door and the Mirror: The Iceman Cometh." Modern Critical Interpretations

Eugene O'Neill's The Iceman Cometh. Ed Harold Bloom. New York: Chelsea House,

1987. 49-57.

Day, Cyrus. "The Iceman and the Bridegroom." Modern Critical Interpretations Eugene O'Neill's

The Iceman Cometh. Ed. Harold Bloom. New York: Chelsea House, 1987. 9-17.

Gagey, Edmond. "Eugene O'Neill." Twentieth-Century Literary Criticism, Vol.6. 332.

O'Neill, Eugene. "The Iceman Cometh." Masters of Modern Drama. Ed. Haskell M. Block et. al.

New York: Random House, 1962. 587-644.

Orr, John. "The Iceman Cometh and Modern Society. "Modern Critical Interpretations Eugene

O'Neill's The Iceman Cometh. Ed. Harold Bloom. New York: Chelsea House, 1987. 87-93.

Need Writing Help?

Get feedback on grammar, clarity, concision and logic instantly.

Check your paper »

The Iceman Cometh by Eugene O'Neill Essay

- Eugene O’Neill was the leading playwright in America in the first half of the 20th century. In his entire artistic career, He completed nearly 50 plays, which deal with a wide variety of subjects, concerning issues in religion, society, family and humanity. As a pioneer of modern American theatre, he made a great contribution to American drama, American culture and American ideas. The critical studies of Eugene O’Neill have long since focused in his expressionistic techniques, his tragic tensions, his tragic consciousness, and his philosophy....   [tags: playwriter, artistic career]

Strong Essays
1355 words (3.9 pages)

Essay on The Denial Of The Holocaust

- The freedom of speech has given each individual a voice to express oneself. Misusing the right has led to increasing number of conspiracies on a wide range of subjects and Holocaust is certainly an issue that is intensely debated over. However, it is also important to back ideas with evidence that can prove an issue logically. Hence, it is important to keep the memory of the Holocaust alive in the face of continuing challenges by anti-Semites, deniers, and historical revisionists. The denial of the Holocaust was fueled by the operation carried out by the Nazi operation named “Aktion 1005”....   [tags: Nazi Germany, Adolf Hitler, Holocaust denial]

Strong Essays
1254 words (3.6 pages)

Essay about Denial in Lord of the Flies by William Golding

- “If you're in denial, you're trying to protect yourself by refusing to accept the truth about something that's happening in your life. In some cases, initial short-term denial can be a good thing, giving you time to adjust to a painful or stressful issue. It might also be a precursor to making some sort of change in your life” (Mayo Clinic Staff 2014). Many forms of denial are found in William Golding’s novel Lord of the Flies. The group denies its serious situation, some deny their true character, and some deny their own actions because they can’t believe they are capable of such bad behavior....   [tags: schoolboys, short term denial]

Strong Essays
1290 words (3.7 pages)

Holocaust Denial and Distortion Essay

- “One is astonished in the study of history at the recurrence of the idea that evil must be forgotten, distorted, skimmed over. The difficulty, of course, with this philosophy is that history loses its value as an incentive and example; it paints perfect men and noble nations, but it does not tell the truth.” -W.E.B Du Bois, Black Reconstruction, 1935 As early as age thirteen, we start learning about the Holocaust in classrooms and in textbooks. We learn that in the 1940s, the German Nazi party (led by Adolph Hitler) intentionally performed a mass genocide in order to try to breed a perfect population of human beings....   [tags: Holocaust Denial Essays]

Strong Essays
2232 words (6.4 pages)

iceman - preservation Essay

- 1. Explain why the iceman was so well preserved. ( source one) It is said that a frozen body will stay preserved over hundreds, even thousand of years. During the first stage of investigations Austrian archaeologist Konrad Spindler researched the layout which had proved that the iceman’s body position and placement of weapons were preserved in the same position from when the Iceman had died, it had also been proved that the body was initially covered in a thin layer of snow which had helped complete the freeze drying process before it turned into ice....   [tags: essays research papers fc]

Strong Essays
2844 words (8.1 pages)

Denial of an Addiction Essay

- Denial of an Addiction It is hard to put into words the exact reason a person becomes addicted to something such as drugs, alcohol or even gambling. Addiction can be described as becoming so dependent on something that their tolerance could be raised to dangerous levels. When an addicted person needs larger doses, it is because the amount that they originally started with does not provide that “reward” that it once used to. This could lead to a dangerous downfall including disability or even death....   [tags: theory of positive and negative reinforcement]

Strong Essays
855 words (2.4 pages)

The Holocaust Denial Essay

- Growing up, people learn about the past of their own kind and of the world they live in. One reads history in books, hears history from parents, and studies history at schools. Knowing the history of one's ancestors allows one to understand the past and change for a better future. Significant battles, civil movements, and reformations teach people valuable lessons and help the society to improve. The Holocaust, one of the most well-known history events, represents a perfect historical example of discrimination and racism....   [tags: adolf hitler, facist leaders, nazi]

Strong Essays
1333 words (3.8 pages)

Holocaust Denial Essays

- Genocide is best described as: “the deliberate and systematic extermination of a national, racial, political, or cultural group.” “If the holocaust is not a fact, then nothing is a fact.” A major part of the Holocaust genocide is denial. Holocaust denial is present in the United States, Europe, and Canada. These people, known as “revisionists” try to deny the extermination of six million Jews during World War II. The revisionists claim that there are no documents to prove the holocaust actually existed (Holocaust Denial n....   [tags: genocide, WWII]

Strong Essays
1217 words (3.5 pages)

Canadian Denial Essay

- Is Canada a third world country. This question at first glance may appear obvious; however, if you look at our environmental impact it becomes clear we are slipping from grace and into disaster. The problem is growing faster than our mindsets are changing. Unfortunately the public and the Government are in denial. Canadians seem to think if there is an abundance of something it can be wasted. This conception is dangerous and unhealthy. Canada is not doing nearly enough to improve the environment....   [tags: third world country, environment, pollution]

Strong Essays
973 words (2.8 pages)

Denial Essay

- Denial So you don’t think that you are an alcoholic. Chances are that you are not, but this is the thought that many who are unknowingly addicted to alcohol or other mind-altering agents. This denial barrier is the first of many hurdles to overcome when they are identified as having an addiction disorder. Although all denial isn’t bad most of the time, addicts are often the last to recognize their disease, pursuing their addictions into mental illness, the degeneration of health, and ultimately death....   [tags: Papers]

Strong Essays
1170 words (3.3 pages)