These expectations do not necessarily reflect the true nature of the individual. Cultural traditions, media, and social pressures force the individual to play his or her part perfectly. This form of play acting becomes the reality for the individual. Yates utilizes the play at the very beginning of the novel as a metaphor, not only to showcase the acting within the play but the acting that happens in real life as well, to show that not much of a difference remains between these two forms of theatrics.
Confusing real life with acting can have dire consequences, emphasizing the concept that staying true to the individual rather than to the societal standard remains essential. The novel begins with a dress rehearsal, metaphorically symbolizing the play as a dress rehearsal for life, as the actors continue to act long after the play ends. The Laurel Players wait with baited breath for approval or rejection, much like all Americans during this time period do in their every day lives.
They wait for approval from the conforming majority, hoping that they played their parts well enough. It means that the players will continue to act poorly in life, going against their individual will, what they truly want, in favor of what society tells them they must do in order to gain social praise.
It becomes a vicious cycle. Individuals make up a society, and if they continue to implement these outrageous social expectations, society can only continue to uphold and enforce them upon other individuals. Although both the players and the director know that this rehearsal lacks the same amount of talent and spark as any of the other rehearsals, he will praise them and they will pretend to agree with him, solidifying their places in this neat construction of society.
So here appears a tunnel of acting; the acting of the play and the acting in life. Yates utilizes this metaphor because it shows how disingenuous a life dictated by societal standards can be. From the dress rehearsal, Yates moves on to the play itself.
Of course, the play flops, as it must. When the acting becomes less than convincing, when it feels forced or untrue, than the play will suffer immensely. Life does not work when its players can not act genuinely, when they do not act themselves and instead put on an act so that they can fit in and put on an outward appearance of normalcy.
This concept gives American citizens the expectations that their government should create a society that will reward drive and innovation or a society that will generate growth. But at the same time, one should be responsible for himself to develop as a full man and woman without the barriers of the older civilizations since this had already been slowly erected by the political leaders in the past.
In past years, American Dream is perceive as a promise that each human being has the freedom to make his own life according to his will or choices. This promise made the Americans dreamers, hopeful and independent wanting to take advantage of a freedom of self expression that not every culture has. But this established social structure has a profound influence over individual inner experiences.
It is also inevitable to anticipate that upward social mobility will increase the likelihood of the experience of depression and frustration due to the resultant feelings of ambivalence. Due to the promises of American Dream, it is inevitable that American citizens will create mental expectations that if it fails they will have a feeling of depression and hopelessness.
These feelings of hopelessness and depression due to unfulfilled passion and expectations are illustrated in the main characters of the film Revolutionary Road. The movie is an indictment of American life that focuses on how the unfulfilled hopes and aspirations of April and Frank Wheeler, main protagonists and married couple, affected them emotionally and psychologically.
The seemingly unrealistic and romantic expectations of April Wheeler illustrate tattered remains of American Dream that not achieving it will cause inner death. Though the couple experienced financial security in the middle class suburban America, does that guarantee a meaningful life? Even though they are living comfortably, both believe that they are not truly free. They want a satisfying life free from suburban paralysis whose kind of lifestyle seems routinary.
Fulfillment of passion, dreams and hopes with total freedom and independence is what American Dream is for April Wheeler. But financial security and practical opportunities paralyses and hinders her husband to leave America, and so the conflict begins.
April wants to escape financial practicalities, routines and her simple role only confined in domesticity and motherhood. Determine to escape the mediocrity and suburbanites that surround them, the couple decides to move in Europe to develop and practice their artistic sensibilities, free from the consumerist demands of capitalist America.
But their relationship is thrown into jeopardy because of their frequent squabbling, misunderstanding and unnecessary anxieties from their American Dream. Frank and April Wheeler, the main characters, are afraid to be like anyone else in their community who seems content and who are afraid to explore outside their comfort zone of financial security.
They have promised never to be dragged into the monotonous world of the people around them. But despite their wits, talents and good looks, the couple suddenly find themselves slowly becoming the individuals they swore never to be; a plain, unhappy housewife who longs for fulfillment; a man with a boring job and an existence as dreary as the rest of the neighborhood. April, a failed aspiring theatrical actress starts the novel in a local theatrical group.
This experience of April in the initial part of the novel is embarrassing and is a disaster that sows the seeds of her discontent.
She soon realizes how dull her life is, a life that is far from what she imagines her life will be with Frank Wheeler. Frank, a naturally dreamer, lost his direction and works at Knox Business Machines as an ordinary office employee, while April becomes a typical housewife looking after her two kids. The novel depicts April as a housewife frustrated and emotionally conflicted after being trapped in the suburban life.
This given reality is such a discouragement for both especially for April and so she devises a plan to reverse their fortunes and present fate. April discusses plans to escape and leave everything behind in their suburban life to live in Paris where she will fulfill her artistic talents in performance and Frank will find out what he really wants to do with his life.
Paris for her will give them opportunities to fulfill what they really wanted in life; total freedom, adventure and happiness. At first though hesitant, Frank agreed as he also wants to achieve the promises of venturing the unpredictability of life in Paris.
When Frank gets promoted though, their much awaited departure is being stalled, and they find their marriage crumbling. Apparently Wheelers miss the culture and intellectual quiver of their youth. So when not arguing passionately, they drink a lot and often hang out with their friends and neighbors, the Campbells.
But April strongly believes that as a bright, beautiful and gifted couple, their future has strong possibility of greatness if only they will take the risk. April is being corrupted by her strong desire to depart herself to her monotonous life in Connecticut.
Revolutionary Road was a profound movie. This film portrays the malaise that had lied behind the American Dream during the mids. During that era, the image of the nuclear family living in suburbia where the man is the bread-winner and the woman as the domesticated housewife was considered as the dominant idea constructed by a .
A Revolutionary Road | Analysis. Print Reference this. Published: 23rd March, Last Edited: 17th May, Disclaimer: This essay has been submitted by a student. This is not an example of the work written by our professional essay writers. In Revolutionary Road, by Richard Yates, Frank and April Wheeler are sucked into .
Richard Yates’ Revolutionary Road, a tragic novel, challenges the preconceived notion that the ’s was a cheerful time where everyone had the perfect lifestyle in the Suburbs by introducing his readers to three distinct characters who are anything but pleased with their life. Christiana SkinnerWalker PHIL A SA #3 Revolutionary Road In the film Revolutionary Road, it depicted the lives of a suburban couple, April and.
Revolutionary Road Analysis Essay - Suburban life in the s was ideal, but not ideal for the women. Women were continuously looked at as the typical suburban housewife. In Richard Yates’ novel, Revolutionary Road, we are given the chance to see the dynamics of the Wheeler family and of those around them. Through the use of theme, tone and. Essays - largest database of quality sample essays and research papers on Richard Yates Revolutionary Road.