Long Day's Journey Into Night
by: Eugene O'Neill
Kayla Roman, Brandon Carneiro, Ankita Patel, Allysa Dong, Daphne Rama


Characters:


Meryl Streep as Maryexternal image m6nOgz7iX8wfTmOSPcvi31nhjhXV16gTO1cCXaYRhmVXcUDlDYwgE4JMcgw3peZ7xOHhUovkuOvQNNjvlDpfA8IRf2v8UeVnAAFD8iLWkm2b8m8TsduOiNfQidLdXmWnyQ
Mary Cavan Tyrone is the wife of James Tyrone, a once-famous actor and now stingy father. She came from an ordinary Irish home with a father in the grocery business whom she loved. He loved her also and spoiled her, so when he died from consumption (tuberculosis), Mary was scarred. Thus, when her youngest son Edmund began to show symptoms of consumption, she lapsed into doping and adopted strict denial. Mary also attended a Convent as a schoolgirl, planning to become a nun, but her dream was to become a concert pianist. She often comments on how her worn, gnarled hands were formerly elegant and smooth on the piano keys. They gradually deteriorated due to Mary’s morphine addiction - when she gave birth to Edmund, the pain was so great that the doctor prescribed morphine, and she became hooked onto the way it allowed her to forget the pain. Now, Mary stays at home reminiscing and regretting the past, wishing for more social interactions. To her unhappiness, her husband refuses to invite guests over, so she is alone most of the time, with the exception of her sons monitoring her drug intake. Her morphine addiction steadily increases throughout the novel and her rambles grow more distant as she detaches herself from the stressful family situation - her husband is an alcoholic, her first son is a bum, and her second son has consumption. Despite this, Mary still loves her family very much. She grasps onto an aloof persona for most of the novel, an effect of the morphine, but occasionally awakens to defend her actions.
“I’ve become such a liar. I never lied about anything once upon a time. Now I have to lie, especially to myself. But how can you understand, when I don’t myself. I’ve never understood anything about it, except that one day long ago I found I could no longer call my soul my own.” (P. 96, Act 2 Scene 2)

Tom Hardy as Jamie external image rHsOS-QFO-Dpqe5M48rUV_yDWthQ4OIpEXeQLlqgJmANiwYi7DHwrTzkWr-Ck1k2zJ3f6Y4-tI70lonBwZPeW2aVxWZCXEvgwd-j7P6G0P4vJ_W4we72tLKhlZoQJ9G7Lw
Jamie is the eldest of two sons belonging to Tyrone and Mary. He has direction but no drive and is still trying to figure out where he belongs. He plays the older brother role just perfectly because he is tough on Edmund yet is there to listen and care for his brother. Jamie’s odd antiquated nose, along with the his irresponsible Irish charm is easy to fall for. Jaime is one of those close guy friends that you have that can play around but will also tell you what you need to hear. He is playful, yet he has a serious side when it comes to things he cares about most. His strength also plays as his weakness. His tendency to avoid troubling situations evokes disappointment from his father. Instead of facing his problems and growing as an individual, he runs from his dilemmas. Running leaves him with nothing but unaccomplished dreams and washed up determination. He wants to make something of himself but is not quite sure how. He tries to find the love he wants at home from the prostitutes and liquor he spends his check on. He’s very close to going under, but his brothers sickness is the only thing that is barely keeping his head above water.
All right, Papa. I’m a bum. Anything you like, so long as it stops the argument.” (P. 33)









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David Tennant as Edmund
Edmund Tyrone is the youngest son of both James and Mary Tyrone. Unlike the rest of his family, Edmund is genuinely a caring man. He is naive and wants to believe in the best of people, especially his mother. This is his greatest weakness, although it may also be a strength. His inability to fathom his brother’s selfishness and jealousy left him distraught when Jamie revealed that he molded him into the person he was out of spite. He was also the last to know of his mother’s morphine addiction and the last to give up on her. His strength, however, lies in his free will. Although he looks up to his brother, he does not always follow him blindly. His mind is his own despite being guilty of mimicking his brother’s reckless habits. In terms of significance in the novel, Edmund is the middle man of the family; he physically and figuratively stands between his father and Jamie as they relentlessly bicker over trifling matters. He is also the voice of reason. His family members all represent extremes of a behavioral continuum, but he remains the most clearheaded. His father is a stingy man with a small temper. His brother Jamie finds comfort in alcohol and fails to filter his thoughts from his speech. His mother suffers from a severe case of trauma and depression, leading to her abuse of morphine. Edmund embodies a bit of all of his family members, but his mind is his own. Even so, Edmund, too, is overcome with an illness: consumption. He begins to look frail and emaciated due to a lack of an appetite. In spite of his health, however, he continues to indulge in rather morbid poetry and philosophy.

“He’s a liar! It’s a lie, isn’t it, Mama?” (P. 61)




Cathleen

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Cathleen is the housemaid in the house of the Tyrone family. Her character can be defined as flirtatious. She does the work assigned to her, yet she finds the time to go beyond that and to say a few interesting words to male characters within this play. She is caught flirting with Edmund in Act 2 Scene 1. Another thing that is well introduced about her character, is her use of alcohol and how she obtains morphine at the local drug store. Cathleen is a character who helps move the plot by having a small yet significant role in certain areas of the play. She comes in Act 3 mostly as a person to open up more windows for the reader and assist in some character development pertaining to Mary. It once again puts us at the most simple significance of her character, a drunk housemaid, who helps develop the plot and other characters within the play. It’s amusing how in one section of the play she states, “I'd never suggest a man or a woman touch drink, Mister Edmund. Sure, didn't it kill an uncle of mine in the old country.” and then immediately after, she moves to a more supportive gesture to the alcohol, “Still, a drop now and then is no harm when you're in low spirits, or have a bad cold.”

James Tyrone (Patrick Stewart)

James is the father of Edmund and Jamie Tyrone, as well as the husband of Mary Cavan Tyrone. When he was a child, his father fell ill and left for Ireland so that he may die in Ireland. As a result, James’s family was stricken by poverty. In order to survive, James’s mother and two older brothers took up cheap labor. At the age of ten, James had to stop his schooling to work at a machinist’s shop for fifty cents every two weeks. The constant threat of being put in a poorhouse developed in him a stiff stinginess, which his family tends to jeer at. He grew up loving Shakespeare and soon entered the theatre. At the peak of his acting career, he performed with Edwin Booth and was considered one of the most handsome men in America. It was also at the peaexternal image mFiQ4g_e5yFbU6o3efDQ4A1o4yqrkvpYWMbiHlsyXTjyEn6GPlXEEfg9Cak7DjjAogWj9bwdlqt70sAWTvEgn99p4zDu7qAEFi-wg6RXsCQlkDwE9LNBCfilxxhuR62e3wk of his career that he met Mary, with whom he instantly fell in love with. Mary frequently claims that Tyrone is a drunkard by referring to how he would often drink heavily and pass out during their first few months of marriage, leaving Mary to pick up his pieces. Mary also frequently accuses Tyrone of being unable to provide her with a decent home in which their family may thrive, as well as a doctor that can cure Edmund of his consumption. Tyrone denies her claims, but his irrational fear of spending too much on electricity bills and other money-related neuroses indicate that his stinginess has no limits.
“Her [Tyrone’s mother] one fear was she’d get old and sick and have to die in a poor house.
He pauses--then adds with grim humor.
It was in those days I learned to be a miser. A dollar was worth so much then. Once you’ve learned a lesson, it’s hard to unlearn it. You have to look for bargains ( Act Four, pg. 148)."



Themes:
Theme:Blame
"But I suppose life has made him like that, and I can't help it. None of us can help the things life has done to us. They're done before you realize it, and once they're done they make you do other things until at last everything comes between you and what you'd like to be, and you've lost your true self forever." (Act 2, Scene 1, Page 63)



Theme:Addiction
“‘I must go upstairs. I haven’t taken enough. When you start again, you never know exactly how much you need.’” (Mary, Act 3, Page 98)
“‘Well, what’s wrong with being drunk? It’s what we’re after, isn’t it? Let’s not kid each other, Papa. Not tonight. We know what we’re trying to forget. But let’s not talk about it. It’s no use now.’” (Edmund, Act 4, Page 118)
“We are such stuff that manure is made on, so let’s drink up and forget.’”(James Tyrone, Act 4, Page 118)



Theme: Regrets
Tyrone: I understand that I’ve been a God-damned fool to believe in you!
Mary: ...Oh, James, please! You don’t understand! I’m so worried about Edmund! I’m so afraid he -
Tyrone: I don’t want to listen to your excuses, Mary.
Mary: … James! I tried so hard! Please believe- !
Tyrone: I suppose you did, Mary. (P. 72)


Mary: No, no. whatever you mean, it isn’t true, dear. It was never a home. You’ve always preferred the Club or a barroom. And for me it’s always been as lonely as a dirty room in a one-night stand hotel. In a real home one is never lonely. You forget I know from experience what a home is like. I gave up one to marry you - my father’s home. (P. 74)


Theme: Isolation
Isolation is a major part of this play. The family is constantly hiding feelings or emotions from one another; it's almost like they're playing pretend to get by. In Act 2, Scene 1, the play displays the reasons for isolationism within the family. Mary chooses to stay in her room after breakfast, while Edmund was alone downstairs. The isolation with the characters lead them to finding some kind of sanctuary by drinking alcohol. They use it as a way to escape one another and isolate themselves from the reality of the situations they face. Edmund drinks for enjoyment and uses his sickness as an effective excuse to be left alone, or obtain his share of tonic, with or without consent. The family issue is prominent because no one chooses to be open and leave their isolated stage to confront each other fairly and make up for past actions that has led to the painful division and isolation that the whole family has to face.



Theme: Forgiveness



“That’s all. Feel better now. Gone to confession. Know you absolve me, don’t you, Kid? You understand. You’re a damned fine kid. Ought to be. I made you. So go and get well. Don’t die on me. You’re all I’ve got left. God bless you, Kid (Act Four, pg. 167).”





Vocabulary:


Act 1 Vocabulary:
  • Aquiline (page 19)
- shaped like an eagle's beak; hooked.
  • Disintegration (page 19)
- decay.
  • Beguiling (page 19)
- to influence by trickery, flattery, etc; to mislead.
  • Countenance (page 19)
- appearance; especially the look of expression of the face.
  • Mephistophelian (page 19)
- one of the seven chief devils in the Tempter of Faust.
  • Sallowness (page 20)
- of a sickly, yellowish color.
  • Rheumatism (page 12)
- any disorder of the extremities or back, characterized by pain and stiffness.
  • "His grey hair is thin with a bald spot like a monk's tonsure." (Page 13)
- the traditional practice of cutting or shaving the hair from the scalp while leaving some parts uncut.
  • Posturings (page 13)
- to behave in a way that is meant to impress or mislead others.
  • Forebears (page 13)
- polite or patient restrain from an impulse to do something.


Act 2, Scene 1 Vocabulary:

  • Garrulous

-Excessively talkative, especially on trivial matters

  • Virtuous

-Having or showing high moral standards

  • Cynicism

-An inclination to believe that people are motivated purely by self interest; skepticism

  • Apprehensive

-Anxious or fearful that something bad will happen

  • Contemptuous

-Displaying scorn towards a person

  • Volubly

-characterized by a continuous flow of words

  • Strickenly

-In a stricken manner (stricken: seriously affected by an undesirable condition or unpleasant feeling

  • Resentment

-bitter indignation or having been treated unfairly

  • Placatingly

-Make (someone) less angry or hostile

  • Admonishingly

-With warning or reprimanding firmly towards someone


Act 2, Scene 2 Vocabulary:

  • Consumption (pages 74, 75)

- an antiquated term for “wasting disease” such as tuberculosis

  • Sanatorium (pages 74,78,86)

- a medical treatment center, or hospital

  • Poorhouse (pages 74, 78)

- a government run facility that funds housing and support for the homeless

  • Convent (page 71)

- a Christian community or monastery.

  • Quack (pages 70,81)

- slang term for a doctor of questionable skill or reputation

  • “‘There wasn’t a nerve on my body.’” (Mary, page 81)

- a phrase that does not always refer to actual nerves, but emotion and anxiousness

  • Pullmans (page 81)

- railroad sleeping cars

  • Swindle (page 78)

- to con someone out of their money or possessions

  • Graft (page 79)

- the acquisition of money

  • Solicitude (page 84)

- care or concern for someone else




Act 3 Vocabulary:

  • Simper (page 99)

- to smile or gesture coquettishly

  • Slovenly (page 99)

- messy and disheveled

  • Fastidiously (page 99)

- attentive to accuracy and detail

  • Cess (page 100)

- a curse on

  • Clout (page 101)

- a heavy blow

  • Cathleen: I wouldn’t give a trauneen for a teetotaler. (page 103)

- trauneens are long thin blades of grass

- teetotalers are people who abstain from all alcoholic beverages

  • Grippe (page 103)

- influenza

  • Pious (page 103)

- devoutly religious

  • Cleaver (page 108)

- butcher’s knife

  • Appraisingly (page 110)

- evaluating the value/quality of something, judging

  • Effusive (page 110)

- gushing feelings of gratitude, pleasure or approval



Act 4 Vocabulary


- Owlish (p. 125)
solemn and wise in appearance


- Chip-on-the-shoulder (p. 126)
having a disposition to quarrel


- Soothsayer (p. 129)
a person who professes to foretell events


- Sardonically (p. 130)
characterized by bitter or scornful derision; cynical


- Lecher (p. 133)
a man given to excessive sexual indulgence


- Trull (p. 133)
a prostitute


- Burlesque (p. 134)
a humorous and provocative stage show featuring slapstick humor, comic skits, bawdy songs, striptease acts, and a scantily clad female chorus


- Absinthe (p. 135)
a green, aromatic liquor that is 68 percent alcohol, is made of wormwood and other herbs, and has a bitter, licorice flavor: now banned in most Western countries


- Coquette (p. 138)
a flirt


- Reproachful (p. 140)
shameful




Scenes/Event Analyses:


Act 1:
edmund.jpg
edmund.jpg

The start of the plays setting is instrumental in your understanding of the plot and rest of the story. It begins at the table with Tyrone and Mary having their average small talk. This brings about the introduction of Mary’s self-consciousness along with Tyrone’s relentless I’m-always-right-syndrome. Then we are introduced to the boys Jamie and Edmund, and are abruptly shown -by the intense coughing heard in the other room- that Edmund has come down with a really bad cold. Then, after breakfast Edmund leaves to go rest in his room. Edmund then hints that Mary had some problems in her past and he’s happy that she is back to her “old self again.” Then Jamie brings up the seriousness of Edmund’s sickness to Mary and Tyrone and leaves Mary upset. Seeing his mothers angst, he quickly tries to mask his concern by saying that it is just a malarial fever that their doctor can cure. Still upset, Mary says that Doctor Hardy is not a good doctor and all that doctors want you to do is spend money and become dependant on their medicine. Jamie then compliments his mother so she could be at ease as she leaves the room to tend to Edmund. Then, Tyrone yells at Jamie because he is not to upset his fragile mother about the impending illness of his younger brother. Jamie sees right through the lie and asks if Doctor Hardy thinks it is consumption, but Tyrone is also in denial. He takes his anger into a whole different subject, Jamie’s failed past. He ruminates about Jamie’s failed life choices and his lack of determination to do anything but to spend his check on liquor and prostitutes. Jamie defends his case saying that it’s his money and he earns it while helping his father as well. From this, we can tell that Jamie is hesitant to talk about anything serious and would rather just not deal with anything. Jamie then accuses his father of being cheap and the reason for Edmunds sickness because he didn’t send him to a real Doctor. Tyrone gets defensive and says that all of the other Doctors just want to take your money. Jamie then surrenders to his father, saying that he can’t change his ways. Then we later find out through the dialogue that Tyrone’s frugality led to Mary’s morphine addiction a while ago. Both Tyrone and Jamie express their deep happiness for having Mary back. Jamie interjects saying that he hears Mary walk around at night in the extra bedroom, but Tyrone’s in denial and quickly poses an excuse saying that his snoring is making her pace around at night. Then they stop arguing and Mary talks to Edmund who tells her that isn’t feeling well at all and she tells him to stop suspecting her, so she begins a desperate battle with herself.



Act 2, Scene 1:
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The scene begins with Edmund, as he pretends to read a book, but his mind is really on his mother and the way she was acting. He takes the opportunity to get a drink when Cathleen places some in the room. He couldn’t hide his actions from his older brother, Jamie. Jamie and he exchange a few words about their mother and then Mary comes downstairs. The topic is changed to the whereabouts of James Tyrone, the father. He is out talking to someone else, and everyone wants to start eating, all while they are really hiding something from each other. There are points where Jamie breaks and says something about his mother and what she did, something that Edmund doesn’t want to completely believe. As Tyrone comes back into the scene, there’s an air of awkwardness that is set because of the conversation Jamie is bringing up. This is a simple scene that shows the divisions and isolation between the members of the family. They simply can’t come together to eat because everyone has something against the other. Mary feels that Jamie respects his father more, and Jamie has something against both of his parents, there’s friction between him and the father. Edmund seems to be unfortunately caught in the middle of the turmoil and heat in the characters are in within this scene.


Act 2, Scene 2:
Following the phone call received from Dr. Hardy, James tells Edmund that he must go see the doctor. Refusing to accept that her son has a serious medical illness, Mary hysterically insults Dr. Hardy and the entire medical institution for being “quacks,” or incompetent, as Edmund desperately tries to make his mother stop. The rage is brought on by the effects of her morphine relapse. She begins by warning Edmund of the deception of medicine and the detrimental consequences of visiting a sanatorium. Halfway through her rage, however, she directs her words to a different audience: herself. As she continues to insult the doctors, she eventually says, “‘He deliberately humiliates you! He makes you beg and plead! He treats you like a criminal! He understands nothing! An
external image aGz9s6WvvkukAJ1jLrvsizg5NyUgUnIJFlOCOxJ0PVIwK6EJvXZXyxRd63JXsKaI8lw5KOIFRuwTAjtrz0H-aw4L1_aNusIqVj9-UxnYlR3ErBD1ZZx5ssWQ_nizkAaFJwd yet it was exactly the same kind of doctor who first gave you the medicine-and you never knew what it was until too late.’” (Page 70) Mary is no longer giving Edmund advice, but bitterly reminding herself of her own bad experience with doctors. It was her seeking help in the first place that brought on her addiction. This scene shows that Mary, although the morphine gradually allows her to live in a sanction of denial, acknowledges her addiction. She even regrets it internally. It offers insight into Mary’s character; she isn’t just a depressed woman on drugs. She is a woman who regrets many of her past mistakes and is unable to prevent them from weighing her down. So she turns to the needle to inject false complacency to forget her reality and pretend she is happy with the path she decided to tread.


Act 3:
Mary is in the living room with Cathleen, who has been drinking Tyrone’s liquor. The two have been chatting, as Tyrone dislikes having guests over and Cathleen is all Mary has to keep her company while the men are gone. Mary is well under the influence of morphine, and it is evident from the way her eyes shine and her thoughts trail off. She mentions how she hates the melancholy blare of the foghorn, but loves the fog. “It hides you from the world and the world from you. You feel that everything has changed, and nothing is what it seemed to be. No one can find or touch you anymore… It’s the foghorn I hate. It won’t let you alone. It keeps reminding you, and warning you, and calling you back.” (P. 100-101) This dreamy recollection demonstrates that Mary’s guilt continuously prods her until she throws a tantrum and breaks down, as she does later when Edmund and Tyrone come back. The three discuss Mary and Tyrone’s past relationship, when the two were madly in love, as well as Mary’s childhood. When she isn’t deflecting the blame of her rheumatism to Edmund’s birth, she puts it on Tyrone’s alcoholism and stinginess. Eventually, Edmund becomes tired of his mother’s antics and leaves. Mary then wishes to herself that she would one day overdose by accident. When Tyrone comes back, her emotions crumble further and she cries out, “Oh, James, I’m so frightened! I know he’s going to die!” This breakdown shows that Mary is guilty for indulging in her morphine addiction, but recognizes that it is because she is afraid Edmund will die, and not for another reason.

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1) Mary looking out into the fog; 2) Mary breaking down over Edmund’s illness.


Act 4

In the finale of Long Day’s Journey Into Night, while Tyrone, Jamie, and Edmund are drunk in the parlor, Mary enters the room. She has dressed herself up as a young girl with long braids and a sky blue dressing gown. She carries her wedding dress, which Tyrone quickly takes away from her. She is completely detached from reality due to her excessively taking morphine. However, she wanders around the parlor, saying that she has lost something, saying that when she had it, she “was never lonely nor afraid.” While the men try to call her out of her delusion, she shuts them out, repeating that she must find what she has lost. Then, she sits down and reminisces of her youth. She tells of how she was about to become a nun, and how the Blessed Virgin would never let any harm come to her so long as she kept her faith in her. Then, she recalls how she met Tyrone, and how she was “happy for a time.”
It may be inferred that the precious object Mary is looking for is her faith. In earlier acts, Mary attempts to pray to the Blessed Virgin for guidance, but she cannot. She scolds herself, saying that the Blessed Virgin can see through her deceit. She may also be looking for her lost faith in the family. Throughout the play, Mary often complains of how the men are always suspicious of her. Although they deny it, this may be true, as they cannot seem to trust her to be by herself. Her loss of faith in the family may also be related to how Jamie has turned out or to how Tyrone often lies and acts to cover it up. Without something to put her faith in and to reassure her that things may turn out alright, Mary remains untethered to reality.
It may also be noted that during this scene, no one in the family can communicate what they wish to say to Mary, principally because they are all either drunk or drugged.



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http://www.family-lawfirm.co.uk/uploaded/image/Blogs/iStock_000015010010Small1.png





Significant Quotes:
Act 1:
“It makes it so much harder, living in this atmosphere of constant suspicion, knowing everyone is spying on me, and none of you believe in me, or trust me.” (Mary, Page 47)

Mary says this because Edmund is doubting her as well as Jamie because they fear that she is going back to her old ways of addiction. She feels like the walls are caving in and nobody trusts her when they are her family so they should never doubt her. She basically feels like they are attacking her and she can’t even breathe without being questioned in her own home. This is instrumental in the understanding of the play because her addiction drives her as well as her family off the rails and breaks it apart Mary tries to forget what happened the last time she lost herself in Morphine but Edmund tells her that the only way she can get over this is by remembering. Mary refuses to cope with what has happened and feels trapped and alone without anyone to vent too.

Act 2, Scene 2:
“‘You’re not much of a weather prophet, dear. See how hazy it’s getting. I can hardly see the other shore.’” (Mary, Page 76)


Taken literally, Mary is talking about the thick fog outside which has been getting progressively worse throughout the day. It becomes so overwhelming that it is nearly impossible to see. The fog in the novel, however, serves another purpose. It is both a symbol and metaphor for Mary’s morphine relapse. As the day progresses, Mary gradually slips into a void realm. The deeper she invests herself in the morphine and allows the drug to consume her, the less of a grip she has on reality. She “can hardly see the other shore” due to the haze. She allows herself to get lost in the mist and dwell on what is no longer present.


Act 3:
Tyrone: His face works and he blinks back tears - with quiet intensity. “Yes! As God is my judge! Always and forever, Mary!”


Even though his wife suffers from a deep morphine addiction, Tyrone is still fiercely loyal to his wife. He has always been faithful and loves her despite her weaknesses. Whenever his wife seems back to normal, undetached from conversations and eyes unglazed, he and his sons light up with happiness, streaked with relief. This is why when Mary gives in to her morphine again and again, Tyrone is disappointed on multiple occasions. She insists to him that she really tried to hold back from the morphine, and instead of reprimanding her, he just sighs and says, “I suppose you did.” He accepts that morphine is something she cannot refrain from, and the family believes it is an addiction she cannot control - either because she is a woman, or because they believe morphine is uncontrollable.


Act 4

“Only don’t forget me. Remember I warned you--for your sake. Give me credit. Greater love hath no man than this, that he saveth his brother from himself (p. 167).”
During his drunken stupor, Jamie tells Edmund how much he hates and loves him. He blames Edmund for their mother’s deteriorating condition, as she cannot help but worry about Edmund’s health, and he seeks to corrupt Edmund so that he may end up worse than he. However, he follows each vengeant remark with odd, tender expressions of his brotherly love for Edmund. He tells Edmund that he’d “like to see [him] become the greatest success in the world,” but that “[he’ll] do the damnedest to make [him] fail.” This may serve as a model for the relationships in the family: everyone in the family has good intentions, but they can never stop hurting each other.


Issues of Social Concern:

Morphine Addiction:
Mary’s morphine addiction has drove her family apart before and her craving for it now is driving them farther and farther. In the beginning of the play, she really had no regard for Morphine and she really kicked her habit. It was the seriousness of Edmund’s illness, along with her overall loneliness and her paranoia that drove her right back into the comforting arms of Morphine. In America today, we see addicts that aren’t as lucky as Mary to have their family supporting them and so sensitive to their condition. She is so privileged to have a caring family that stood by her without even a flinch. Even after all of her friends left her and cut her off, her family stood beside her. This description of her addiction gives a very negative connotation to drugs and addiction. Whereas, in America today, we don't acknowledge drugs as so bad anymore because it was become so much more widely accepted. In this time period, it isn’t something that people would want to do or even try because they see how bad it is for you but today, celebrities are doing these in their sleep and people idolize those people. So then they put out the image that drugs are okay, so it isn’t as shunned as it was when Mary was addicted. People now are all in it for the hype and the moment, if they would just take a second to think, they would realize how that one hit can mess them up for life, I mean, look at Mary. Even with her support system, she still fell through the cracks, so imagine how it would be without anyone helping you. Would you risk it all for one hit?


Family Issues:
Issues within the household are very prominent in this play. The scenes are all set in the same place, and in the same setting we see many things about the family unfold here. There is a sense of division between everyone in the family. Everyone is angry or disappointed in the other for something that they have done. Edmund is the young one in the family, and he is really just a character who is getting manipulated by other characters. He isn’t sure to believe Jamie when he mentions drugs and their mother, or to ignore Jamie and be defensive about his mother. Jamie feels like Mary has no right to really speak, because she has betrayed him and the family for a long time with her addiction. The addictions within this play really show how people cling to something to escape reality and the predicament they are in. Cathleen, Edmund, Tyrone and Jamie all partake in consuming alcohol, even while they know it is bad for their health. It really comes down to the fact that they don’t know how to appropriately express themselves to each other, and this builds up within them, leading them to find alcohol as a tonic. The family is divided in this way, the friction between Jamie and his father is at a constant, and even though Mary tries to defend her husband, she’s not short on remarks about him. Neither is he when he’s talking about Mary or Jamie.


Financial Success-
James Tyrone is notorious amongst his family for being tight fisted and stingy when it comes to matters involving money. From refusing to turn on light bulbs unnecessarily to forcing his family to call ramshackle houses “home”, James is reluctant to lose what he spent years working towards. When he first arrived to the country from Ireland, his father left him and his family to die back in the homeland. His mother struggled to find work and feed the rest of the family; money was scarce, but food even more so. James was eventually left to be the man of the house and had to take matters into his own hand. He gradually started to save up money and find work in the acting profession. Little by little, he began to build his small fortune. Even as an adult, James meticulously works as a real estate investor to make profits. When it comes to spending money, however, he reluctantly parts with even the most meager of amounts. He realizes the value of the dollar because he put his blood and sweat into attaining success. In terms of the American identity, class and monetary success play a pivotal role. Americans generally have a lust for wealth whether it be because of previous generations’ failure to acquire it or simply to fulfill the individualistic mentality of the culture. James Tyrone, then, is not so different from the average American. He desires wealth and values the effort he put into his work.


Alcoholism:
To say the Tyrone family is dysfunctional is putting it in kind terms. Aside from the dope fiend mother, Mary, there are three men, all of whom are alcoholics. Tyrone, the father, stores his alcohol in a safe, protected by a padlock that his son Jamie attempts to pick at with wire. Tyrone himself drinks throughout the day, especially whenever his wife rambles on about the past. When she mentioned his drinking problem, saying she would have never married him had she known he drank so much, he reacts guiltily - but continues to drink. Mary recalls, “I remember the first night your barroom friends had to help you up to the door of our hotel room, and knocked and then ran away before I came to the door. We were still on our honeymoon…” She also blames her husband for her youngest son Edmund’s illness, saying his obsession with alcohol is the reason her sons are drunkards: when they were little and felt unwell, he would quiet them in the night by dosing them with teaspoons of alcohol. Ultimately, the men in the family seem to need alcohol in order to deal with their problems - Tyrone his wife, Jamie his career, and Edmund his illness. Nowadays, people still use alcohol to drown in their sorrows and cope, but it is shown to be a dangerous addiction, and can lead to diseases including cirrhosis of the liver, gallstones, and tuberculosis (consumption). A healthier solution would be to sleep and exercise the pain off.



Preserving Family Image

In the 1950s, waves of veterans returned home from the Pacific and the European front to reunite with their families. Suburbs sprung up, and the Baby Boom quickly followed. Families purchased material goods to satisfy them, but it never seemed to be enough. A characteristic of this time period which is often criticized, such as in Long Day’s Journey Into Night, is its artificiality. Families would attempt to forge a false image of themselves. They would picture themselves as united and happy when their abilities to communicate with each other were breaking down. For example, in the play, Jamie and Edmund watch Tyrone as he speaks to one of their neighbors. The brothers jeer at him for putting on a facade for the neighbor, pretending that everyone is happy when their situation is far from that. Ultimately, their bonds with one another were fragile. In the final act, as Mary walks through the parlor attempting to find her lost item, the men cannot even call her out of her delusion. They are unable to say what they truly wish to say, indicating the breakdown of their family’s communication.

Act 1:
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The start of the plays setting is instrumental in your understanding of the plot and rest of the story. It begins at the table with Tyrone and Mary having their average small talk. This brings about the introduction of Mary’s self-consciousness along with Tyrone’s relentless I’m-always-right-syndrome. Then we are introduced to the boys Jamie and Edmund, and are abruptly shown -by the intense coughing heard in the other room- that Edmund has come down with a really bad cold. Then, after breakfast Edmund leaves to go rest in his room. Edmund then hints that Mary had some problems in her past and he’s happy that she is back to her “old self again.” Then Jamie brings up the seriousness of Edmund’s sickness to Mary and Tyrone and leaves Mary upset. Seeing his mothers angst, he quickly tries to mask his concern by saying that it is just a malarial fever that their doctor can cure. Still upset, Mary says that Doctor Hardy is not a good doctor and all that doctors want you to do is spend money and become dependant on their medicine. Jamie then compliments his mother so she could be at ease as she leaves the room to tend to Edmund. Then, Tyrone yells at Jamie because he is not to upset his fragile mother about the impending illness of his younger brother. Jamie sees right through the lie and asks if Doctor Hardy thinks it is consumption, but Tyrone is also in denial. He takes his anger into a whole different subject, Jamie’s failed past. He ruminates about Jamie’s failed life choices and his lack of determination to do anything but to spend his check on liquor and prostitutes. Jamie defends his case saying that it’s his money and he earns it while helping his father as well. From this, we can tell that Jamie is hesitant to talk about anything serious and would rather just not deal with anything. Jamie then accuses his father of being cheap and the reason for Edmunds sickness because he didn’t send him to a real Doctor. Tyrone gets defensive and says that all of the other Doctors just want to take your money. Jamie then surrenders to his father, saying that he can’t change his ways. Then we later find out through the dialogue that Tyrone’s frugality led to Mary’s morphine addiction a while ago. Both Tyrone and Jamie express their deep happiness for having Mary back. Jamie interjects saying that he hears Mary walk around at night in the extra bedroom, but Tyrone’s in denial and quickly poses an excuse saying that his snoring is making her pace around at night. Then they stop arguing and Mary talks to Edmund who tells her that isn’t feeling well at all and she tells him to stop suspecting her, so she begins a desperate battle with herself.