| Quote #1
I am the narrator of the play, and also a character in it. The other characters are my mother, Amanda, and my sister, Laura, and a gentlemen caller who appears in the final scenes. He is the most realistic character in the play, being an emissary from a world of reality that we were somehow set apart from. But since I have a poet's weakness for symbols, I am using this character as a symbol; he is the long-delayed but always expected something that we live for. (1.1, Tom).
Tom understands that Jim is more than just a gentleman caller; he is the epitome of everything Amanda desires for her daughter.
| Quote #2
"What are we going to do, what is going to become of us, what is the future?" (2.10, Amanda).
Amanda oscillates between reminiscing over the past and planning for the future.
| Quote #3
"Oh! I felt so weak I could barely keep on my feet! I had to sit down while they got me a glass of water! Fifty dollars’ tuition, all of our plans – my hopes and ambitions for you – just gone up the spout, just gone up the spout like that." (2.16, Amanda).
Amanda’s plans for her children’s futures fail because they are irreconcilable with what her children actually want.