International Journal of All Research Education & Scientific Methods

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ISSN: 2455-6211

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Quest for Identity, Pessimism, and Spiritual ...

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Quest for Identity, Pessimism, and Spiritual ...

Quest for Identity, Pessimism, and Spiritual Crisis in Eugene O’Neill’s The Hairy Ape

Author Name : Dr. Sarvjeet Kaur

ABSTRACT The theme of the spiritual crisis afflicting modern man runs through all the major plays of O’Neill imparting to them a coherent body. The Hairy Ape can be regarded as one of the most representative plays in this regard as it presents powerfully the journey of a soul from innocence to experience, from a world of harmony to that of spiritual crisis. This article will focus on the different dimensions of the disintegration besetting the materialistic society of modern America. Besides analysing Yank’s illusory experience of harmony with the world around him, it will map out the gradual process of awareness which brings to him a clear view of the world as a heap of broken images. The spiritual and psychological crisis generated by the stark view of real human conditions will be examined in some detail. The playwright’s depiction of this experience, with both its aspects of dark nihilism as well as a struggle to search for some flickering ray of hope, will constitute an important part of this discussion.