This Is Our Youth Topics for Further Study
by Kenneth Lonergan

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Topics for Further Study

(Drama for Students)

  • Lonergan's dialogue in the play has been praised for its realism. Write your own dialogue of a conversation between you and a friend that reveals an important quality of your friendship.
  • Read J. D. Salinger's novel The Catcher in the Rye and compare the depiction of a teenager in 1950s America with the depiction of young people in the early 1980s in This Is Our Youth. Are the struggles involved in the coming-of-age process the same or different in these works? Write an essay comparing and contrasting the two works.
  • Imagine what might have happened to Warren after the end of the play. Would he have given his father back the money and reconciled with him? Would he have continued his friendship with Dennis? Write a character analysis of Warren ten years after the play ends. Use details from the play to back up your views.
  • Interview four people who have experienced death in their families. Take notes, focusing on the effect of death on the family members. Report your findings to the class and lead a discussion, asking the class to compare your findings with the effects of Warren's sister's death on him and his father.