Lost Without a Visual

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In Hamilton's book ,Essential Literary Terms, she comments that: “That medium [plays in their written form] has several advantages, such as the opportunity to reread a key piece of DIALOGUE, to review the cast of characters, and to see the STAGE DIRECTIONS that the playwright has provided to indicate the actions and the vocal inflections of the characters.  At the same time, it can be difficult for a reader to distinguish among the voices of the characters—to avoid the tendency to read a play as an extended monologue—or to envision the physical movements that accompany the words.  Seeing a performance of the play, ideally on stage but even on film, can be enlightening” (Hamilton 2).

Hamilton makes a very good point that it is nice to have the written text in front of you with the dialogue and stage directions.  However, he also makes a good point that it is easy to get lost when you cannot see the actors or hear them.  In “Trifles,” it was hard for me to differentiate between some of the characters, especially the male characters.  With no visual representation of them, they seemed almost to have no individual personalities.  That is why in high school I always appreciated the fact that after we read a Shakespeare play we would always watch either a filmed production or go see a live production of the play.  After having read and studied the written play, it always added a new dimension to see it acted out.   


The male characters in Trifles were pretty flat, so it's no real wonder that they were hard to tell apart.

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