Wine in the Wilderness Themes

This Study Guide consists of approximately 51 pages of chapter summaries, quotes, character analysis, themes, and more - everything you need to sharpen your knowledge of Wine in the Wilderness.
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Classism within the African-American Community

A central theme of Wine in the Wilderness is the issue of socioeconomic class divisions within the African-American community. Bill, Cynthia, and Sonny-man are educated, middle-class professionals; Cynthia is a social worker, Bill is an artist, and Sonny-man is a writer. Oldtimer and Tommy, on the other hand, are underprivileged and not welleducated; Tommy works in a factory, while Oldtimer seems to be unemployed. One of the primary tensions of the play is that caused by the class divisions between these two sets of characters. The middle-class characters look down on the working class characters, pretending to befriend them while showing them little respect. They do not even have enough respect for Oldtimer, their elder, to ever have asked his real name. The entire plot revolves around their plan to use Tommy as a model for Bill's painting of "the worst chick in town...

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This section contains 698 words
(approx. 2 pages at 400 words per page)
Buy the Wine in the Wilderness Study Guide
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Wine in the Wilderness from Drama for Students. ©2005-2006 Thomson Gale, a part of the Thomson Corporation. All rights reserved.