Our Town By Thornton Wilder

1245 Words5 Pages
Most people like to think of living as one thing and dying as another, as different and separate as planets on opposite sides of the galaxy. Perhaps they are correct in that life and death are quite unlike; however, it would be unreasonable to state, with complete certainty, that there is no tie between them. Even those two planets, countless light-years away from each other, could have a wormhole or some other undiscovered pass providing an intergalactic bond. Who is to say that life and death, too, cannot be linked? American author and playwright Thornton Wilder describes this possibility of connection perfectly in both his renowned play, Our Town, and his earliest novel, The Bridge of San Luis Rey. In the latter, he says, “There is a land…show more content…
This quote alone makes Wilder’s views quite clear, and it can be easily supported by his thoughts as presented in Our Town. Thus, it is simple to explain Thornton Wilder’s thought-provoking perspective that life and death are two separate, distinct entities, connected solely by love. The land of the living is one of blissful ignorance and fleeting time; it is one where people lack appreciation for the details of life in the lull of routine and dwell too much on their past. It is one which exists in every home, and one which Thornton Wilder describes perfectly in Our Town. The land of the living is, as one might expect, more of a mindset than a foreign location. To Wilder, it means the ideas people have and the way they go about their business while privileged enough to be alive. A specific perspective of his is that life is ever transient and living humans fail miserably at realizing it. In his fictional town of Grover’s Corners, for example, Wilder paints a picture of ordinary townspeople living ordinary lives; to them, their everyday actions are mundane and…show more content…
To many, it is the meaning of life itself, the root of all humanity. It is a tie that binds, a bridge, a form of metaphorical gravity; simply put, it is love. In Our Town, this abstract, quintessentially human feeling is expressed in numerous ways, from the romance of Emily and George to the friendship between Mrs. Gibbs and Mrs. Webb. Perhaps the most striking words regarding love, however, are conveyed by the Stage Manager in Act III: We all know that something is eternal. And it ain’t houses and it ain’t names, and it ain’t earth, and it ain’t even the stars…everybody knows in their bones that something is eternal, and that something has to do with human beings…There’s something way down deep that’s eternal about every human being. (Our

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