| Quote #7
Well, that's the question – has she been a bad wife? It's clear James had some major flaws, but it also seems true that Mary is a bit spoiled. Her resentment throughout the play sometimes smacks of privilege, that she deserves better than she gets, and that others ought to be responsible for keeping her content.
| Quote #8
On one level, this speech is just Edmund's finest description of how he sees reality as worthless. But note also that Edmund makes his case by use of mythology and literature (parodying Shakespeare). In other words, the only way to describe life's horrors is indirectly, through literary allusion. In a sense, then, this passage is a justification of the work as a whole – the only way for us to gaze at the horror of real life is elliptically, through the fictionalized portrayal of the Tyrone family.
| Quote #9
This passage gives us an angle on Jamie's suffering that we really didn't have before. In addition to finding out that Jamie acknowledges an addiction he wants to beat, we also discover that he was really counting on his mother to be a role model, and she let him down. Jamie admits that he hadn't completely forsaken his family and the idea that his mother could be an inspiration to him. Now, though, it seems like all hope is lost.