71 pages 2 hours read

Joseph Kesselring

Arsenic and Old Lace

Fiction | Play | Adult | Published in 1941

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Essay Topics


How are the themes in Arsenic and Old Lace supported by the play’s single setting in the Brewster family home?


Abby and Martha are nearly identical in their characterization. Why do you think Kesselring chose to write two aunts instead of one? Could this impact how audiences receive the play?


Compare and contrast Jonathan and his aunts. How do their relationships to violence differ? How does this affect their respective roles in the play?