by Thornton Wilder
Our Town Visions of America Quotes
How we cite our quotes: Citations follow this format: (Act.Line). Every time a character talks counts as one line, even if what they say turns into a long monologue.
Everybody locks their house doors now at night. Ain’t been any burglars in town yet, but everybody’s heard about ‘em. You’d be surprised, though – on the whole, things don’t change much around here. (III.11-2)
Even though the small town is becoming more and more modern, the Stage Manager claims that the town is still very much the same.
Over there – Pointing to stage left. Are the old stones, - 1670, 1680. Strong-minded people that come a long way to be independent. Summer people walk around there laughing at the funny words on the tombstones…it don’t do any harm. And genealogists come up from Boston – get paid by city people for looking up their ancestors. They want to make sure they’re Daughters of the American Revolution and of the Mayflower…Well, I guess that don’t do any harm, either. Wherever you come near the human race, there’s layers and layers of nonsense…Over there are some Civil War veterans. Iron flags on their graves…New Hampshire boys… had a notion that the Union ought to be kept together, thought they’d never seen more than fifty miles of it themselves. All they knew was the name, friends – the United States of America. The United States of America. And they went and died about it. (III.18-21)
This passage is rather ambiguous towards civilization, humanity, and the United States.