Beyond the Horizon Essay

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In the following essay, Voglino explores how the last scene of Beyond the Horizon contrasts with the predictability of the rest of the drama, chiefly through Robert's "theatrically heightened speeches."

Beyond the Horizon, completed in 1918, was O'Neill's first full-length drama to be produced (1920) and his first play to be awarded the Pulitzer Prize. Despite contemporary praise for its powerful realism, early reviewers voiced an awareness that the play was flawed. Some objected to its graphic depiction of tuberculosis; others, to what they considered its excessive length. Predictability and over explicitness were two of the more significant faults pointed out. Early reviewers Alexander Woollcott and Heywood Broun targeted the final scene for its illusion-dispelling effect. Broun attributed the break in the impact of the drama to the lowering of the curtain before the very short final scene, which he argued "compels a wait at a time when tension is...

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This section contains 4,430 words
(approx. 12 pages at 400 words per page)
Buy the Beyond the Horizon Study Guide
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Beyond the Horizon from Drama for Students. ©2005-2006 Thomson Gale, a part of the Thomson Corporation. All rights reserved.