The use of time as a manipulative variable in Federico Garcia Lorca”s The House of Bernarda Alba and August Strindberg”s Miss Julie plays a significant role in the shaping of both plays. In The House of Bernarda Alba, Adela is in a constant struggle to obtain freedom from the oppressive rule of her mother. As the wedding of her sister, Angustias approaches, an unruly and suspicious tone of voice from Adela is observed as well as a mysterious attitude.
Lorca divides The House of Bernarda Alba into scenes of day and night effectively to reveal the friction between family members as well as the affair between Adela and Pepe el Romano. Miss Julie , the protagonist is forced to act decisively before the rise of the sun â€“ for that is when “the Count” was to return. The time constraint present in Miss Julie is based on the length of a day- twenty four hours, as opposed to The House of Bernarda Alba where the duration of this constraint is extended upon a greater amount of time.Order now
Miss Julie”s attitude changes from prevailing and superior to subordinate and weak â€“ in relation to Jean, her servant. The climax is portrayed when Miss Julie changes her tone of voice towards Jean and scolds him like a dog. The struggles of the protagonists” in these plays are driven by outside forces such as the oppression by authoritative rule. In The House of Bernarda Alba and Miss Julie the use of time is used to enhance the dramatic effect of the play by shifting the sentiment of Miss Julie and Adela tranquil and good-hearted to cruel and bitter.
As Miss Julie commences, the diction and the dialogue is calm and tranquil as the play is set on Midsummer”s eve â€“ a day of rejoice and entertainment. Miss Julie”s parents are absent this enchanting night and are to return at the rise of sun â€“ which ultimately acts as a time constraint for Miss Julie is to part from the oppressive and tyrannical rule of her parents. At the start of Act I, the dialogue between Miss Julie and Jean â€“ her valet â€“ is without any boundaries or limitations as she suggests not to “take it as a commandâ€¦and all rank should be forgotten” pg. . Since the night has just begun, Miss Julie is not pressed and agitated.
Strindberg sets the opening act of the play on Mid Summer”s Eve, a night of celebration, hence the sweet-tongued conversations between Jean and Miss Julie. Time serves as a factor in Act I as it is set in a time of celebration, good-will, and joy. Due to this environment of benevolence, the character”s moods and feelings are jovial and inviting. “Have you ever been in love? ” Miss Julie”s romantic dialogue with Jean while Christine exemplifies this cheerful time period.
The ongoing flirtation between Miss Julie and Jean can be seen in the dialogue as Miss Julie begs Jean to dance against his will, “â€¦come and dance a schottische with me now, Jean” pg. 4. Miss Julie”s kindness to Jean at this point in time illustrates how without a time constraint the tone of dialogue is romantic and soothing. As the play progresses, a change of heart is noticed as Miss Julie and Jean begin to share accounts with one another. “O God in heavenâ€¦take me out of the filthâ€¦save me, save me! ” p. 8 Here Miss Julie”s last nerve has been tampered with and her dominant and prevailing attitude has shattered with that of depression. It is Miss Julie”s change in attitude which results in her subordinate state of mind. This state of mind allows Jean to manipulate Miss Julie to following him to Lake Como â€“ this reinforces the enhanced effects of time on the plot.
“Now I am tired of playingâ€¦the Count wants his boots to be ready for him, and it is after midnight already,” here the characters are confined by time which is done to rush the course of action pg. 1. This confinement of time refers to the time to act until the Count arrives â€“ the following morning. “The Count will be here any moment and before he comes our fate must be settled” pg. 16. Here, Miss Julie and Jean are being rushed into deciding their paths. This rushing of Miss Julie and Jean enhances the plot of the play as it intensifies the dialogue between them with the use of bitter tone of voice. The plan of Jean and Miss Julie to flee the manor before the arrival of the Count serves as the climax of the play.
Strindberg”s confinement of time of these characters allows the plot to be filled with intense dialogue and enhances the dramatic effect of this play. In Lorca”s play The House of Bernarda Alba, the marriage of Anguistias to Pepe el Romano plays a significant role in the behavioral change seen in Adela. Prior to being told of Anguistias” engagement with Pepe el Romano, Adela”s tone and mood is tranquil and welcoming. ” I will not get used to it,” proclaimed Adela as the news pierced through her soul, triggering a feel of bitterness and mischief pg. 220. “I don”t want my body to dry up like yours!
I don”t want to waste away and grow old in these rooms,” proclaims Adela as she realizes her time to find a suitor is slowly fading away as her aged sisters” once did. This behavioral change is vital in The House of Bernarda Alba for the change of Adela from a gentle and conserved character to an enraged and bitter one is correlated to the amount of time until Anguistias” wedding. Due to this time constraint, Adela”s dialogues become powerful, emotional, and insulting as Anguistias” marriage approaches. “Don”t be childish leave your sister alone” and if you want Pepe el Romano, control yourself! pg. 235. This proclamation from Poncia stresses the importance of time as revealing Adela”s affair at the wrong time would virtually compromise the wedding altogether. Adela, the bold, daring, and mischievous youngest daughter cannot tolerate Bernarda”s strict rule over the household â€“ especially when the time until Augustias” wedding with Pepe el Romano is running out.
“I”d fight my mother to put out this fire that rises from my legs and mouth” pg. 142. Tension is created as Adela becomes fierce and agitated with the oppressive rule she lives under as well as the wedding of Angustias. If one of us has to drown, let her drown! ” p. 283 Adela”s greed and desperation has caught up to her, as time is winding down to Angustias” wedding. This plays as a rising action in the play as Adela and Martirio confront one another late night. “Don”t think these walls can hide your shame! ” 168. At this point, Adela”s time has run out of time, while the plot of the story is enrichened with heated scenes which contribute to the enhancement of the play.
The will of Adela to publicly announce her affair with Pepe el Romano prompted her to confront her mother, Bernarda once and for all. The Shouting in this prison is over! ” p. 285 Adela finally confronts Bernarda and frees herself of her rule. Adela”s public announcement of her affair, as well as her death, were influenced by Strindberg”s use of time as a manipulative variable, which served as an aid to deepen the dramatic effects in the play. Upon juxtaposing The House of Bernarda Alba and Miss Julie, the common use of time by both authors” to enhance the dramatic effects of the play is apparent. Similarly, the confinement of time in The House of Bernarda Alba and Miss Julie intensifies the dialogue between characters.
The time constraints allow an aura of resistance from oppressive forces in both cases, the parents to be created â€“ which ultimately results in the death of Miss Julie and Adela. When used as a literary technique, time has proven to be effective in dramatizing the plot of a play. With the confinement of time came a lack of self-control, which caused character”s to react rebellious, and ultimately resulted in death. The audience learns to appreciate the use of time when carefully analyzed through character behavioral transformation.