Orpheus Descending - Prologue Summary & Analysis

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Prologue Summary

This play, based on an ancient myth, tells the story of a young, sexy, mysterious drifter and the transformation he brings into the life of a bitter, angry woman. Rich in evocative language and imagery, the narrative dramatizes thematic issues relating to both revenge and its opposite, emotional and spiritual healing.

As Dolly and Beulah lay out a buffet supper to welcome Lady and Jabe home from the hospital, they gossip about Jabe's illness, which they believe is terminal, about how Lady and Jabe have separate bedrooms, a circumstance they compare to that of a jail, and about how Jabe and Lady ever got together. Beulah tells Dolly that Jabe bought Lady, after her heart had been broken by "that Cutrere boy," and then goes on to talk about how Lady's father, whom they refer to as "the Wop," moved to the area...

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This section contains 712 words
(approx. 2 pages at 400 words per page)
Buy the Orpheus Descending Study Guide
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Drama for Students
Orpheus Descending from Drama for Students. ©2005-2006 Thomson Gale, a part of the Thomson Corporation. All rights reserved.