Eugene O'Neill Writing Styles in The Hairy Ape

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Scene vs. Act

Unlike many traditional plays that utilize the act format, O'Neill designed The Hairy Ape to be broken up as eight scenes. An act is a demarcation of action in a play that is often comprised of several scenes. Scenes are typically shorter than acts and limited to one or two locations. By structuring his play's action around short episodic scenes, O'Neill is able to encompass a variety of settings that depict Yank's disassociation with both his peers and members of the upper class. The scene format also allows the action of the play to flow quicker, creating a tension that builds to Yank's death in scene 8.

Symbolism

There are some significant and important symbols throughout The Hairy Ape. The symbols are employed to reinforce the playwright's ideas and r intentions behind the play. Mildred, with her pure white dress, is a symbol of naivete, an unspotted...

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This section contains 862 words
(approx. 3 pages at 400 words per page)
Buy The Hairy Ape Study Guide
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Drama for Students
The Hairy Ape from Drama for Students. ©2005-2006 Thomson Gale, a part of the Thomson Corporation. All rights reserved.