Illustration of Christopher Mahon with a noose around his neck and a woman standing in front of him

The Playboy of the Western World

by J. M. Synge

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Compare male and female characters in J. M. Synge's The Playboy of the Western World.

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In J. M. Synge's The Playboy of the Western World, both male and female characters are interested strongly in marriage; sexuality appears in the play mainly as a dive towards getting married rather than one motivated by desire for illicit relationships for both genders. The Roman Catholic Church also influences both genders. Both males and females are prone to hero-worship. In a sense, the attractiveness of both Pegeen and Christy as marital partners has an element of a sort of herd mentality. Male characters, however, are more prone to and admired for physical violence. The female characters in the play seem stronger and more effective than the men.

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