In Valley Song, what is Veronica's dream, and how is it revealed throughout the play?

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In Athol Fugard’s play, the characters of the Author and Veronica have different personal dreams, but in many ways, they share the same vision for their country and society. Because Veronica is much younger, she has no memory of the many years of segregation that were official policy in their country. One positive side of her being young and not having those personal memories is that she is intensely optimistic about having a bright, unrestricted future.

When the audience first meets Veronica, she is bringing lunch to her Oupa, or grandfather. His name is Abraam Jonkers, but people call him Old Buks. While he is concerned about the fate of his farm, she feels constrained by rural life. In some ways, her dream is an abstraction of what life should contain: as she says, “‘Adventure and Romance!’”

Specific components of her vision are revealed both by her statements and her behavior. She dreams of becoming a famous singer. Although the family is poor, this is not necessary impossible, the playwright conveys, because she has a beautiful voice. She is also a talented songwriter. All this is conveyed when she sings a song she wrote about the Railway Bus that will take her to the city and other unknown places.

Another place where Veronica’s dream is developed is in her conversation with the Author, who surprises her while she is pretending to sing onstage. They converse about her aspirations to achieve fame as performer. While the Author is cautious, Veronica shows her commitment as she distinguishes between impossible dreams and the proper dreams that can be achieved through persistence and faith.

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Write a literary essay in which your describe Veronica's dream in Valley Song. Refer to various incidents in the play where the reader/audience is introduced to her big dream and/or idea of dreaming big.

The lines and characters in question are from Athol Fugard’s play Valley Song, which was his first written after the end of apartheid in South Africa and election of Nelson Mandela as its president. While we can’t write your essay for you, we can make sure that you understand the play’s context, purpose, and main ideas.

We know from when we first meet Veronica and she complains to her grandfather Buks that the village lacks “romance and adventure”; her mind is on grander things than singing in the church choir. We also know that her mother had run away to the city with Veronica’s father when she was about the same age as Veronica and died a year later giving birth to Veronica. Buks naturally fears the worst for Veronica and doesn’t want her to leave him, which sets the dramatic stakes of Veronica following her dreams early on and foreshadows the inevitable conflict of her needing to choose between them and her grandfather.

The Author has been challenging Veronica about the notion of dreaming too big, advising her that she ought to reconsider her daring hopes for a life more practical and predictable, but Veronica defends her commitment to her dreams and can’t be deterred. As Veronica is leaving, the Author tells her that he had only been testing her to see if she was truly ready for the sacrifice, and that as someone who understands the need to submit to one’s higher calling.

This is Fugard’s message with the play, that a new generation of South African artists and dreamers must take over for the previous and remake the country for the better.

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