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Such scenes have always been a focus in literature. Consider Shakespeare's plays -- both the comedies and the tragedies. Julius Caesar includes a funeral; Twelfth Night ends in marriage. In fact, "death or marriage" is one of the more common ways of classifying a piece's plot; they tended, for many years, to go in one direction or the other. The reason? Marriage is about life, and funerals are about death. These are two of the pivotal experiences of humankind (if we translate "marriage" to mean both "love" and "procreation").
Of course they do. Anything that is regularly part of life that people deal with daily will show up in literature. It is how people deal with pain, loss, grief, greed, family relationships, joy, and happiness. Fortunately, some actually write down their feelings as a way of expressing the emotions which can sometimes be overwhelming. Otherwise, we wouldn't have excellent examples of literature for the rest of us (who maybe don't use the pen as a way to comfort ourselves through tough or jubilant times) to use as a weapon or a crutch. Those who write it down gain relief and healing through the writing, and those of us who don't write are able to gain the relief and healing we need through reading what others have written.
Such scenes reveal the values of the characters and the society in which they live and the scenes add to the meaning of the literary work as a whole. For example, in Harold Pinter's The Birthday Party, the birthday party scene reveals the illusions that the characters had for each other and the scene ends up revealing each other's true feelings.
Other prominent scenes include the party scenes of Fitzgerald's The Great Gatsby. Those scenes reveal the attitudes of the major characters and serves as the possible reunion between Gatsby and his love. the scene also serves to demonstrate the values of early 20th Century America and the wealthy's focus on superficiality.
Scenes such as these not only reveal the meanings of the works as a whole but provide clues into the values of the society at that particular time.
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