Characters Discussed

(Great Characters in Literature)

Ruth Carson

Ruth Carson, the attractive, alcoholic wife of Geoffrey Carson. Ruth’s ironic asides reveal her biting wit and her discomfort with her life in this turbulent African country. On one visit to London to arrange for her son’s schooling, she had a brief affair with Dick Wagner. Now that he has appeared in her living room, her feelings are ambiguous; she resents any feeling he may have that she is in any way obligated to him.

Dick Wagner

Dick Wagner, a fortyish Australian newspaper reporter working for a large London paper. Wagner is still interested in Ruth, but he understands the difference between a London fling and her position as wife and mother at home. Moreover, he is seriously interested in politics, both the politics of the impending revolution in this African country and the politics of the news world. His commitment to union solidarity sets him at odds with Jacob Milne. Wagner brashly joins Geoffrey Carson’s meeting with President Mageeba uninvited, flattering the president into talking with him. At the end of the play, with Ruth unsettled by Milne’s death, Wagner seems ready to reactivate their affair.

Jacob Milne

Jacob Milne, a twenty-two-or twenty-three-year-old reporter for the Grimsby Evening Messenger. Milne has had some fortunate breaks that have resulted in big stories; ironically, he has scooped the far more experienced Wagner with an interview...

(The entire section is 434 words.)