Tom's Escape In The Fire Escape

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In modern literature ladder symbolizes progress and initiation. In the play Tom is seen standing in a fire escape during many acts. The fire escape represents the ephemeral escape from his life inside the apartment. The first description that the play makes about the fire escapes is “The apartment faces an alley and is entered by a fire escape, a structure whose name is a touch of accidental poetic truth, for all of these large buildings are always burning with the slow and implacable fires of human desperation. The fire escape is part of what we see - that is, the landing of it and steps descending from it.” (stage directions, 1.2) The fire escape implies exactly what the name stand for: escape; this escape is freeing from the problematic…show more content…
Every time Tom argues with his mother he escapes to the other side of the street where the cinema is located. The movies suggest that when Tom flee to there, he immerses himself in adventures movies where he vision himself as character. This is related to the fact that he prefers to imagine a false reality than go back to his real one. However, the movies do not provide eternally escape, only an illusion. Tom does not only use the excuse of “going to the movies” as a literal excuse. Sometimes, instead of going to the cinema the excuse if used as a euphemism for drinking and smoking with other people, rather than his family. Later on the play Tom realizes that the movies are not that satisfactory he says “Yes, movies! Look at them? All of those glamorous people - having adventures - hogging it all, gobbling the whole thing...” This suggests that Tom is tired of living on a fake reality rather than trying to escape from his family. Consequently, the play foreshadows his departure, and the last scene of the play he tells his family about his departure, when him mother calls Tom “selfish” and begs for him to go to the movies. As a result, Tom response is “All right, I will! … and I wont go to the movies!” suggesting that now he is leaving for good. The last thing that his mother says is that he should go to the moon as he is a “selfish dreamer”, and this is what he does. All the adventures that he lived in the movies, he now will live in the real
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