Look Back in Anger

by John Osborne

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What is the theme of love in the play Look Back in Anger?

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The theme of love in the play is presented as something that is complicated by class differences.

This means that Jimmy and Alison, who hail from completely different class backgrounds, are unable to enjoy a loving relationship as most people would understand it. It should be pointed out that this is far from being Alison's fault; it's all because of Jimmy's hang-ups about class.

To be sure, Jimmy is a passionate man, a man of emotions. But it seems that he's so overcome with anger at a society that he cordially loathes and from which feels excluded that he's incapable of truly loving anyone, especially not someone like Alison, who, in Jimmy's eyes, represents the upper classes that are keeping him down.

Jimmy believes that love is pain, and to a large extent, this determines his relationship with Alison. Far from love being something to be enjoyed, a source of healthy human pleasure, it is something difficult, something to be endured, a chore. It takes strength and guts, thinks Jimmy, the same kind of fortitude required to maintain a constant posture of anger and defiance against a society he truly detests.

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