Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf?
Power Struggles are very common is many marriages. In Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf?, by Edward Albee, the relationship or marriage between George and Martha is based in power. The power struggle between George and Martha has become the basis of their relationship. Their love has turned into hate. The only connection they have is through their insults and the series of games they play. The power struggle between George and Martha develops is reveled and is resolved through out the play.
At the start of Who's afraid of Virginia Woolf?, the play starts out at two o'clock in the morning, with George and Martha hosting a few friends from the university upon Martha's fathers' request. The guests are Nick and Honey; Nick is new to the biology department, young, good looking, in good shape and clean cut and Honey is very petite, bland looking and not too smart. All four of them have a taste for alcohol, which ends up being the force that drives them all night.
There is a power struggle between Martha and George at all moments of their interaction. The fictional illusions they have created for other people to believe they are the perfect couple, is only to mask the discontent they have in their relationship. Each one of them wants to be the most powerful, to have the upper hand in the relationship. Both Martha and George seem to be afraid to communicate with each other in a sincere way. It is easier to be mean and hide their true feelings. Drinking heavily every day is their way of masking their true emotions from one another and from them selves. Martha is always ordering George around, to get her another drink, answer the door, pocking fun at the job George has and how Martha "wears the pants" in the relationship. Martha wants to live through Georges experiences, because Georges professional in a failure in her eyes, it hard for her to do that. It seems that George takes Martha comments with a grain of salt. He ignores Martha in a way that hints at the deep love he has for her.
Martha's mean bitterness is her way of proving to everyone and her self, that she has control. But in reality she has very little control over her life; she is trying to live through her husbands eyes, living up to her father expectations, and drinking heavily. She does not have much power, because her fate is so tied up in the men around her.
From the start of the play, the reader is lead to believe that Martha has the other hand and she is the most powerful in the relationship. Being mean, brutally honesty and cynical makes people to believe she is powerful. On a night similar to the night of this plays, George and Martha create a son. This is a figment of their imaginations, to hold together their failing marriage. The rules to keep the son alive with in them, is to never speak of this son to any one else. Well Martha told her guests about their son. George seeing an opportunity to get Martha back for exposing their lies...