Revenge and Retribution: Reli(E)Ving Trauma in Frozen by Bryony Lavery

Kamelia Talebian Sedehi, Tay Lai Kit, Wan Roselezam Wan Yahya


Widely studied and defined, trauma has made its way into the streamline of various disciplines of study. Events such as war, natural disasters, violence, and verbal degradation are some factors which could traumatize a person. Although there is no definitive symptom for trauma, one usually suffers from social anxiety, low self-esteem, erratic behavior, or even aggressive tendency. In this article, we attempt to trace the psyche of the protagonist Ralph, in Bryony Lavery’s play Frozen. We want to identify the cause and effect of his traumatic experience during childhood when he was victimized sexually by his mother’s multiple lovers. In addition, the article will also shed light on his view of female figures in general as he grows into his adulthood. We argue that Ralph is stuck in his past and is constantly seeking for opportunities to create and relive the experience which has shaped him into becoming the “monster” he is now. Much to his dismay, we will see how his effort in exacting revenge on his mother is futile and that his thought of retribution to relieve himself winds up in death.

Keywords: Child Abuse, Sexual Abuse, Trauma, Victim

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