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Why Marry?

Jesse Lynch Williams

Book Overview: 

Why Marry? is a comedy, which "tells the truth about marriage". We find a family in the throes of proving the morality of marriage to a New Age Woman. Can the family defend marriage to this self-supporting girl? Will she be convinced that marriage is the ultimate sacredness of a relationship or will she hold to her perception that marriage is the basis of separating two lovers.

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Book Excerpt: 
. . .Your scientific friend gets just two thousand dollars a year!... Lucy, send for Helen.

[Lucy goes obediently.


Well, why not give the young man a raise?


Oh, that's not a bad salary for scientists, college professors, and that sort of thing. Why,[Pg 41] even the head of the institute himself gets less than the superintendent of my mills. No future in science.


Perfectly practical, Theodore. The superintendent of John's mills saves the company thousands of dollars. These bacteriologists merely save the nation thousands of babies. All our laws, written and unwritten, value private property above human life. I'm a distinguished jurist and I always render my decisions accordingly. I'd be reversed by the United States Supreme Court if I didn't. We're all rewarded in inverse ratio to our usefulness to society, Theodore. That's why "practica. . . Read More

Community Reviews

A fairly cruddy Pulitzer prize winning play. Some of the characters are dreadfully overbearing and unfortunately the discussion of the benefits and social utility of marriage and family life no longer hold the same relevance today in the world of de facto relationships. The two main characters scand

When conventions refuses to yield to progress

I don't make a habit of reading plays and would not have done so.on this case but, as I have committed to read all #pulitzerprize winning works, this also includes the #pulitzerprizefordrama , as was the case for this play #whymerry by #jesselynchwilliams

Stands the test of time well. The final trick at the end was kind of cheap, though.

"Why Marry?" was the first play by Jesse Lynch Williams and it was difficult to live up to since it won the first Pulitzer Prize for Drama in 1918. Originally titled "And So They Were Married" it is a smart and humorous look at society's view of marriage and love and how the two aren't always the sa

An old play yet we are still dealing the same prejudice and notions which are being discussed in it.
The content is all about Marriage its foundation, when a woman is questioning about the morale of marriage the so called society gives those arguments in support which increases her doubts on marriage

A dated play regarding societal views of marriage. Very well written and true to today in some respects.

Summary: Couples in a family are each having separate issues surrounding the subject of marriage.
Main plot: Ernest and Helen: two scientists who agree that they love each other; and also agree that they do not want to marry.
Sub-plots: Rex and Jean: probably don’t really love each other but have deci

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