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Exploring The Use Of Time As A Manipulative Variable

1425 words - 6 pages

The use of time as a manipulative variable in Federico Garcia Lorcas The House of Bernarda Alba and August Strindbergs Miss Julie plays a significant role in the shaping of both plays. In The House of Bernarda Alba, Adela is in a constant struggle to obtain freedom from the oppressive rule of her mother. As the wedding of her sister, Angustias approaches, an unruly and suspicious tone of voice from Adela is observed as well as a mysterious attitude. Lorca divides The House of Bernarda Alba into scenes of day and night effectively to reveal the friction between family members as well as the affair between Adela and Pepe el Romano. Miss Julie , the protagonist is forced to act decisively ...view middle of the document...

At the start of Act I, the dialogue between Miss Julie and Jean – her valet – is without any boundaries or limitations as she suggests not to \"take it as a command…and all rank should be forgotten\" (pg. 6). Since the night has just begun, Miss Julie is not pressed and agitated. Strindberg sets the opening act of the play on Mid Summers Eve, a night of celebration, hence the sweet-tongued conversations between Jean and Miss Julie. Time serves as a factor in Act I as it is set in a time of celebration, good-will, and joy. Due to this environment of benevolence, the characters moods and feelings are jovial and inviting. \"Have you ever been in love?\" Miss Julies romantic dialogue with Jean while Christine exemplifies this cheerful time period. The ongoing flirtation between Miss Julie and Jean can be seen in the dialogue as Miss Julie begs Jean to dance against his will, \"…come and dance a schottische with me now, Jean\" (pg.4). Miss Julies kindness to Jean at this point in time illustrates how without a time constraint the tone of dialogue is romantic and soothing.

As the play progresses, a change of heart is noticed as Miss Julie and Jean begin to share accounts with one another. \"O God in heaven…take me out of the filth…save me, save me!\" (p. 18) Here Miss Julies last nerve has been tampered with and her dominant and prevailing attitude has shattered with that of depression. It is Miss Julies change in attitude which results in her subordinate state of mind. This state of mind allows Jean to manipulate Miss Julie to following him to Lake Como – this reinforces the enhanced effects of time on the plot. \"Now I am tired of playing…the Count wants his boots to be ready for him, and it is after midnight already,\" here the characters are confined by time which is done to rush the course of action (pg. 11). This confinement of time refers to the time to act until the Count arrives – the following morning. \"The Count will be here any moment and before he comes our fate must be settled\" (pg. 16). Here, Miss Julie and Jean are being rushed into deciding their paths. This rushing of Miss Julie and Jean enhances the plot of the play as it intensifies the dialogue between them with the use of bitter tone of voice. The plan of Jean and Miss Julie to flee the manor before the arrival of the Count serves as the climax of the play. Strindbergs confinement of time of these characters allows the plot to be filled with intense dialogue and enhances the dramatic effect of this play.

In Lorcas play The House of Bernarda Alba, the marriage of Anguistias to Pepe el Romano plays a significant role in the behavioral change seen in Adela. Prior to being told of Anguistias engagement with Pepe el Romano, Adelas tone and mood is tranquil and welcoming. \" I will not get used to it,\" proclaimed Adela as the news pierced through her soul, triggering a feel of bitterness and mischief (pg. 220). \"I dont want my body...

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