A.M.Holmes’ Music For Torching, Seth MacFarlane’s Family Guy, and Tony Kushner’s Angels in America

A.M.Holmes’ Music For Torching, Seth MacFarlane’s Family Guy, and Tony Kushner’s Angels in AmericaThe social progression of America in the 20th and 21st centuries has been arguably advantageous. In the years following the feminist and civil rights movements, the United States has undeniably developed into the world’s leading democratic system. Women and minorities have equal citizenship status under the law. There are more females in the workforce than ever before, and formerly guarded issues such as homosexuality and domestic problems can now be addressed openly in social and political forums. However, the question remains as to whether or not such progression has benefited American culture and its population as a whole. Perhaps we have become too liberal, too timorous at addressing one another’s differences, resulting in the perpetual fear of coming across as too politically incorrect when expressing one’s opinions. Perhaps our social order has become excessively inverted; women are born intended to slave over the hot stove, and only males and females are biologically prearranged to copulate. Perhaps we are still not tolerant enough, as many minorities still suffer quietly under a largely heterosexual-Caucasian-male-dominated regime. What we have gained from free thinking and global assimilation, we have also lost in traditional principles. Despite the cultural uncertainties that have risen from national change, it is evident that the “American dream” is no longer the embodiment of attaining the white picket fence and happy home that it once was.

Postmodern texts seek to examine this social revolution by examining and questioning our social evolution. Three examples of such texts, A.M. Homes’ Music For Torching, Seth…

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…ent of theories and doctrines? Have the values of America diminished because of such progression? Or has our nation not progressed at all, and remained stagnant because, as Kushner would contend, we have repeatedly committed the same societal mistakes throughout history? Though we have solved certain dilemmas, new ones have arisen. Americans cherish free enterprise, yet we have come to recognize that money cannot buy happiness. Women may now enter the workforce, but are forced to arbitrate between a career and children. Husbands face mid-life crises about the issue of their masculinity. In general, the simple idealism of the rags-to-riches success story is no longer the dream of the postmodern American. Our ambition has instead become a fixation with establishing and accepting one’s own identity and the identities of others despite continuing social uncertainties.


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