Both plays and novels can share a variety of similarities that relate to one another. This essay will discuss three similar themes that are evident between the novel and the play. The impossibility of genuine escape is evident in both pieces of literature. In the play, Tom is unable to truly live the life he wants for himself because he is doing what he needs for his family. In the novel, Dolores struggles to leave her past behind which does not allow her to fully live life. The characters in both the novel and play deal with having to face the real world as the Wingfield family is living a life of illusion as well as Dolores. Lastly, the theme of memory is shown in each as the Glass Menagerie is a memory play and is narrated by Tom’s memory. In the novel, Dolores suffers from her traumatizing memories and cannot let them fully go. The novel She’s Come Undone and the play The Glass Menagerie both share similarities throughout each such as the difficulty of true freedom, the hardship of accepting reality, and the ceaseless power of memory.
The theme of difficulty to face reality is portrayed in both the novel and the play. Throughout the book, Dolores Price lies to herself, to her friends, to her parents, therapists, teachers and everyone to make raise her self-esteem and to make her life seem better than it truly is. She is using these lies so she can make the perfect image and life that she always wished for. Dolores does this to her roommate Kippy when she writes in a letter, “Dear Kippy, I can't wait to meet you. Either my parents or my boyfriend will be driving me down to school”(Lamb 144). This proves that she is writing about a life that is an illusion and does not want to face that fact that this is not true. She would rather pretend to live a fantasy life than come to terms of who she really is, thus not accepting reality just like the Wingfield’s in the play. Each member of the family all have difficulty relating to reality which causes them to live in a world of delusion. Laura struggles the most as she lives in a separate world with her glass animals that she prizes and dears so much. They are extremely unrealistic and alarmingly fragile just like she is. Laura’s brother Tom is the opposite of her because he is able to partake life in the real world as he has a real job so he can take care of his family. But, but the end of the play he becomes unmotivated to go after anything in life anymore and is only focused on the insensibility of being drunk. Their mother, Amanda is the most subjected to not being able to face reality in the play. She has values for herself and for her children that prevent her from observing the legitimacy of her life. Amanda lives in a world where she must be perfect and poised all of the time which is not what her children are, partly because of her own fault. This is evident when Amanda is in her own world and thinks all that Laura needs is a gentleman caller to be successful in life. She says, “All pretty girls are a trap, a pretty trap, and men expect them to be”(Williams 70). This quote proves that Amanda has an illusion that all Laura needs is a man.Amanda’s illusions get the best of her and they subject herself into a longing and misleading picture of reality. In both the novel and play, the theme of not being able to accept reality is shown. Both the novel She’s Come Undone and the play The Glass Menagerie share similarthemes such as the difficulty of true freedom, the hardship of accepting reality, and the ceaseless power of memory that are shown from beginning to end in each. Firstly, the theme of being unable to escape truly is shown in the novel as Dolores is always going to have a past and will never be free of them completely as they are a part of her. In the play, Tom Winfield is also unable to get away from his problems that are holding hm back in life. The next theme that is shared in both the play and novel is facing the concept of reality. Dolores Price shows this because of what she went through growing up and not being able to come to terms of what happened.