Master's Theses



Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)


In this thesis I have given summaries and characterizations of the women characters in Eugene Gladstone O' Neill's plays of more than one act in the order of their writing. At the close of the summarizations and characterizations of the individual plays I have attempted to classify the women characters according to their personality types and their moral traits. All the plays with the exception of six, Bread and Butter, Servitude, Second Engineer or The Personal Equation, Now I Ask You, Ancient Mariner, and S.S. Glencairn are included in this study. These six plays were not available to me. I have not seen any of O' Neill's long plays on the stage; therefore my interpretations are based on the reading and the studying of the individual plays. This method or criticism brings both advantages and disadvantages. We know that a play is written for the sole purpose or being acted on the stage. Not to see it acted is a vital factor. The play Strange Interlude would have a much greater effect on a person were he to see it acted. The play The Fountain was a failure on the stage, yet it reads well. Nevertheless, the reader of a play may have certain advantages over the person who sees the acted drama. The reader has the opportunity of interpreting the characters as he wishes (not merely as the actor wishes), or he may interpret them a she thinks the dramatist himself did. He also has the privilege of studying and reviewing as much of the play as he wishes.


Dr. Myrta E. McGinnis

Date of Award

Summer 1941

Document Type



© 1941 Katherine P. Schoendaller


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