Crimes of the Heart Essay

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Busiel holds a Ph.D. in English from the University of Texas. In this essay he discusses Henley's dramatic technique.

While Crimes of the Heart does have a tightly-structured plot, with a central and several tangential conflicts, Henley's real emphasis, as Nancy Hargrove suggested in Southern Quarterly, is "on character rather than on action." Her characters are basically good people who make bad choices, who act out of desperation because of the overwhelming sense of isolation, rejection, and loneliness in their lives. Speaking of Babe in particular, Henley said in Saturday Review: "I thought I'd like to write about somebody who shoots somebody else just for being mean. Then I got intrigued with the idea of the audience's not finding fault with her character, finding sympathy for her." This basic premise is at the center of Henley's theatrical method, which challenges the audience to like characters their morals...

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This section contains 1,464 words
(approx. 4 pages at 400 words per page)
Buy the Crimes of the Heart Study Guide
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Drama for Students
Crimes of the Heart from Drama for Students. ©2005-2006 Thomson Gale, a part of the Thomson Corporation. All rights reserved.