Term paper on “The Arctic Circle” by Samantha Macher

The main heroine of the play “The Arctic Circle” by Samantha Macher is Elin. In the beginning of the play, Elin days: “I would like to know what happened to my misspent youth” (Macher 4). The thoughts about it hunt her mind and poison her days. Though, up to the end of the play it seems that not only her youth is misspent, but all her life is misspent in the attempt to cling to wrong men, seeking love and attention.

As a teenager, she had a boyfriend John, who was only concerned of himself. As we can see all Elis’ talks with him were actually monologues, because John had paid her words no more mind than he could a buzzing fly: “Teenage Elin and her high school boyfriend, John. He cannot hear her. Her voice is tinged with the anguish that accompanies car repair. He is, as always, working on a motor he’ll never use” (Macher 12-13). She made a mistake once, but she had no courage enough to leave him, when she realized that she no longer loves him. She waited for a long time to make a final move. She waited for four long years before she had the strength and resolve to end this fruitless relationship. Because of John, Elin had wasted her youth and later, her whole life only because she desperately wanted someone other than John, no matter if she doesn’t love that other man. Elin has many boyfriends while with John, but she restrains herself because she thinks it won’t be fair to John if she makes love with other boy. After Elin finally brakes up with John, she meets Paul and almost instantly decides to marry him: “Early-twenties Elin is buying cinnamon gum. She looks at the cashier, early-twenties Paul. He is working on a crossword puzzle”¦He looks up and sees his future wife. She recognizes him from her past lives” (Macher 42-43). Though at first Paul seems to be the right man but in time it becomes evident that he is the same as John ”“ selfish, caring only for himself and his comfort, his words of love untrue. When he claims that he is still in love with her, Elis asks him why. He has no answer other than “I don’t know”. For Elis, this is not enough. With Paul, they end up as strangers. She longs for true love, the one which she had lost clinging to John and later, to Paul. The author gives us a hint on who might be her true love ”“ Casey the artist. But she missed her chance before and finally he shatters all her hopes left to her by telling that he was just married. By the time the play ends, she is a little releved, though. It seems to her that Casey did not forget her after all. Casey gives Elis her portrait as a present and Elis is left pondering on how the two paintings look side by side on her wall would.

In general, this play is about a woman lost between faith and love. She knows that John is not her true love, but she cannot abandon him and turn to some other man. Even after she found Paul, her search is not complete. Elin is still alone, ever searching.

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