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The Cocktail Party Essay | Critical Essay #2

This Study Guide consists of approximately 63 pages of chapter summaries, quotes, character analysis, themes, and more - everything you need to sharpen your knowledge of The Cocktail Party.
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Critical Essay #2

In the following essay, Severin explores Eliot's portrayal of a "disorderly world"-one where women are independent-and his restoration of traditional gender roles by play's end.

Although readers of T. S, Eliot's The Cocktail Party (1949) have long noted its connection to his 1940 tract The idea of Christian Society, none have fully or critically explored the play's social agenda. Like Eliot's earlier treatise, The Cocktail Party presents a hierarchical world view that is alarming in Its implications for both class and gender. Occasionally, the play's class implications have disturbed critics, For example, David Jones comments on the "Christian conspiracy" of the play's Guardians; this elite group, who as Jones points out "set themselves apart," manipulate rather than aid, dictate rather than discuss. However, the implications of the play's violence against women have never been examined.

Of all Eliot's works, The Cocktail Party is his most sinister in its war...

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This section contains 5,008 words
(approx. 17 pages at 300 words per page)
Purchase our The Cocktail Party Study Guide
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The Cocktail Party from BookRags and Gale's For Students Series. ©2005-2006 Thomson Gale, a part of the Thomson Corporation. All rights reserved.
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