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2019 International Conference on Advances in Literature, Arts and Communication , Pages 17-21

Offstage Characters in Tennessee Williams’ Plays

Danqiu Qiao, Liyao Miao

Corresponding Author:

Danqiu Qiao

As the first people who studied drama systematically, Aristotle summarized six elements of drama in poetics. Character is among the six elements. Put it simply, drama is the imitation of actions of people. And character is the artistic manifestation of people in real life. Characters are depicted by appearance, speech, and others’ comments. The depiction should be in harmonious with the thought and helps to reveal the theme of works. Classically, characters will appear on the stage, wearing proper clothes and speaking consistent sentences. However, there is another kind of characters: offstage characters. Offstage characters are like the missing or the dead people in real life. They do not accompany the living any longer. They are absent. If the missing or dead people are beloved by the living, their absence will make people heartbreak. The recollection of those beloved makes people march forward or trapped in sadness. In a word, people live under the influence of the absent beloved. Similarly, offstage characters have an impact on the development of plot in the drama. This thesis will explore the manifestation, the function of offstage characters with examples of Tennessee Williams’ plays.
Offstage characters; Tennessee Williams’ plays
Cite this paper:
Danqiu Qiao, Liyao Miao. Offstage Characters in Tennessee Williams’ Plays. 2019 International Conference on Advances in Literature, Arts and Communication (ALAC 2019). 2019, Vol.1: 17-21.