Absurd Person Singular

Ronald Brewster-Wright Character Analysis

Ronald Brewster-Wright is a local banker who, as the play begins, is seen by his friends and peers as an impressive, successful man whose favor is always worth currying. Over the course of the play, however, Ronald’s fortunes decline, just as Sidney Hopcroft’s fortunes improve: by Act Three, it is Ronald who’s desperate to impress Sidney, not the other way around. Like the two other male characters in the play, Ronald is often shockingly indifferent or oblivious to other people’s feelings, especially those of women. He appears to envy Geoffrey Jackson for getting away with cheating on his wife, Eva Jackson, and seems highly unsatisfied with his marriage to Marion Brewster-Wright, an alcoholic.

Ronald Brewster-Wright Quotes in Absurd Person Singular

The Absurd Person Singular quotes below are all either spoken by Ronald Brewster-Wright or refer to Ronald Brewster-Wright. For each quote, you can also see the other characters and themes related to it (each theme is indicated by its own dot and icon, like this one:
The Middle Class Theme Icon
). Note: all page numbers and citation info for the quotes below refer to the Grove Press edition of Absurd Person Singular published in 1994.
Act One Quotes

JANE: No, but it's special tonight, isn't it? I mean, with Mr. and Mrs. Brewster-Wright and Mr. and Mrs. Jackson. It's important.
SIDNEY: Don't forget Dick and Lottie Potter. They're coming, too.
JANE: Oh, well, I don't count Dick and Lottie. They're friends.

Related Characters: Sidney Hopcroft (speaker), Jane Hopcroft (speaker), Ronald Brewster-Wright, Marion Brewster-Wright, Geoffrey Jackson, Eva Jackson, Dick Potter, Lottie Potter
Page Number: 19
Explanation and Analysis:

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RONALD: Ah. Well, as long as you know about him. Might have been after your silver. I mean, you never know. Not these days.
SIDNEY : No, indeed. No, he—he was from the off-licence.

Related Characters: Sidney Hopcroft (speaker), Ronald Brewster-Wright (speaker), Jane Hopcroft
Page Number: 36
Explanation and Analysis:

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GEOFFREY: Oh now, come off it. Nonsense. She chooses to live with me, she lives by my rules. I mean we've always made that perfectly clear. She lives her life to a certain extent; I live mine, do what I like within reason. It's the only way to do it...
SIDNEY: Good gracious.
RONALD: I wish you'd have a chat with Marion. Convince her.

Related Characters: Sidney Hopcroft (speaker), Ronald Brewster-Wright (speaker), Geoffrey Jackson (speaker), Marion Brewster-Wright, Eva Jackson
Page Number: 40
Explanation and Analysis:

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Act Two Quotes

RONALD: Had a good year. Must be pretty pleased.
SIDNEY: Oh, yes. Had a few lucky hunches. Seemed to pay off.

Related Characters: Sidney Hopcroft (speaker), Ronald Brewster-Wright (speaker)
Page Number: 59
Explanation and Analysis:

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Act Three Quotes

RONALD: Drink? No, I don't honestly think so. She's always liked a—I mean, the doctor did say she should lay off. But that was only because it was acting as a stimulant—She hasn't touched it lately.

Related Characters: Ronald Brewster-Wright (speaker), Marion Brewster-Wright
Related Symbols: Alcohol
Page Number: 73
Explanation and Analysis:

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit, sed do eiusmod tempor incididunt ut labore et dolore magna aliqua. Ut enim ad minim veniam, quis nostrud exercitation ullamco laboris nisi ut aliquip ex ea commodo consequat. Duis aute irure dolor in reprehenderit in voluptate velit esse cillum dolore eu fugiat nulla pariatur. Excepteur sint occaecat cupidatat non proident, sunt in culpa qui officia deserunt mollit anim id est laborum.

RONALD: Both my wives, God bless them, they've given me a great deal of pleasure over the years but, by God, they've cost me a fortune in fixtures and fittings. All the same. Couldn't do without them, could we?

Related Characters: Ronald Brewster-Wright (speaker), Marion Brewster-Wright
Page Number: 79
Explanation and Analysis:

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RONALD: Nobody wants your damn picture, now shut up.

Related Characters: Ronald Brewster-Wright (speaker), Marion Brewster-Wright
Page Number: 82
Explanation and Analysis:

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit, sed do eiusmod tempor incididunt ut labore et dolore magna aliqua. Ut enim ad minim veniam, quis nostrud exercitation ullamco laboris nisi ut aliquip ex ea commodo consequat. Duis aute irure dolor in reprehenderit in voluptate velit esse cillum dolore eu fugiat nulla pariatur. Excepteur sint occaecat cupidatat non proident, sunt in culpa qui officia deserunt mollit anim id est laborum.

MARION: Why don't you just go in the hall and shout "Go away" through the letter-box?
RONALD: Because he happens to have a very large deposit account with my bank.

Related Characters: Ronald Brewster-Wright (speaker), Marion Brewster-Wright (speaker), Sidney Hopcroft, Jane Hopcroft
Page Number: 83
Explanation and Analysis:

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit, sed do eiusmod tempor incididunt ut labore et dolore magna aliqua. Ut enim ad minim veniam, quis nostrud exercitation ullamco laboris nisi ut aliquip ex ea commodo consequat. Duis aute irure dolor in reprehenderit in voluptate velit esse cillum dolore eu fugiat nulla pariatur. Excepteur sint occaecat cupidatat non proident, sunt in culpa qui officia deserunt mollit anim id est laborum.

SIDNEY: Yes. Up at Walter's place. Walter Harrison.
RONALD: Oh—old Harrison's.
SIDNEY: Oh of course, you'll know him, won't you.
RONALD: Oh, yes.
GEOFFREY: Yes.
SIDNEY: Oh, yes, of course. Asking you if you know old Harrison. I should think you do know old Harrison. He certainly remembers you. In fact he was saying this evening...

Related Characters: Ronald Brewster-Wright (speaker), Geoffrey Jackson (speaker), Walter Harrison
Page Number: 85-86
Explanation and Analysis:

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Ronald Brewster-Wright Character Timeline in Absurd Person Singular

The timeline below shows where the character Ronald Brewster-Wright appears in Absurd Person Singular. The colored dots and icons indicate which themes are associated with that appearance.
Act One
The Middle Class Theme Icon
...he comes back into the kitchen and hisses, “It’s them.” Jane knows that Sidney means Ronald Brewster-Wright and his wife, Marion Brewster-Wright. (full context)
The Middle Class Theme Icon
A moment later, Jane, Sidney, and Ronald Brewster-Wright—a man in his mid-forties who is “impressive without being distinguished”—burst into the kitchen. Ronald’s... (full context)
The Middle Class Theme Icon
Materialism Theme Icon
Marion Brewster-Wright, Ronald’s wife, enters the kitchen. She praises the kitchen, especially the shiny “working surfaces” and the... (full context)
Materialism Theme Icon
Marion and Ronald stay in the kitchen, studying the washing machine. Marion tells her husband to “make our... (full context)
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Gender Roles Theme Icon
...Marion tells him, “we can’t tear ourselves away from your divine kitchen,” but she and Ronald follow Sidney out. A moment later, Jane returns with an empty bowl, which she fills... (full context)
The Middle Class Theme Icon
Materialism Theme Icon
Gender Roles Theme Icon
...kitchen, Sidney asks Jane what happened, and Jane explains that she went out for tonic water—Ronald Brewster-Wright let her in again. She notes, “I don’t think he recognized me” and admits... (full context)
The Middle Class Theme Icon
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Just then, Ronald enters the kitchen, and Jane rushes out the back door rather than face her guest.... (full context)
The Middle Class Theme Icon
Materialism Theme Icon
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...appears outside the back door. Sidney waves her away, without his guests seeing him. Meanwhile, Ronald asks Geoffrey about a party the two of them went to, during which Geoffrey flirted... (full context)
Gender Roles Theme Icon
...going, since their dog needs to go home and eat its dinner. She also tells Ronald, “Your wife is looking slightly less than pleased.” (full context)
The Middle Class Theme Icon
Materialism Theme Icon
Fortune  Theme Icon
As Eva leaves, Geoffrey brings up a business deal with Ronald—he wants to know if Walter Harrison’s new shopping complex in the area has an architect... (full context)
The Middle Class Theme Icon
Materialism Theme Icon
Fortune  Theme Icon
Marion enters the kitchen, just as Ronald is leaving. She tells Geoffrey that the house is horribly ugly, and Geoffrey agrees—he explains... (full context)
The Middle Class Theme Icon
Materialism Theme Icon
Fortune  Theme Icon
Sidney and Ronald, now wearing his overcoat, come back into the kitchen. Marion thanks Sidney and tells him... (full context)
Act Two
The Middle Class Theme Icon
Materialism Theme Icon
Gender Roles Theme Icon
...the fitting, and begins to yawn as a result of taking two sleeping pills. Suddenly, Ronald enters the kitchen, and behind him Lottie Potter’s laughter can be heard. He notices Eva... (full context)
The Middle Class Theme Icon
Materialism Theme Icon
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Ronald gets up to change the bulb and notices that the fitting has been removed, leaving... (full context)
The Middle Class Theme Icon
Materialism Theme Icon
Fortune  Theme Icon
Sidney checks to make sure the light is turned off, and tells Ronald that it’s safe to touch the wires. While Ronald and Sidney perform their respective jobs,... (full context)
The Middle Class Theme Icon
Materialism Theme Icon
While Jane, Sidney, and Ronald work, Eva writes yet another suicide note, and then finds a tin of paint stripper.... (full context)
The Middle Class Theme Icon
Materialism Theme Icon
Gender Roles Theme Icon
Sidney suggests that the guests play a party game. Just then, Ronald drops a small “thing” that’s a part of the ceiling lights. Sidney crawls around on... (full context)
Materialism Theme Icon
Fortune  Theme Icon
Marion offers Ronald a drink, and Ronald replies, in a strained voice, “I feel very peculiar.” Jane goes... (full context)
The Middle Class Theme Icon
Materialism Theme Icon
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...Twelve Days of Christmas.” After each verse, a guest joins in—first Marion, then Jane, then Ronald, then Sidney. In the distance George barks. Suddenly, Geoffrey walks in. He’s astounded by the... (full context)
Act Three
The Middle Class Theme Icon
Materialism Theme Icon
Fortune  Theme Icon
Gender Roles Theme Icon
...The kitchen has many modern appliances, but also the “flavor” of the original Victorian design. Ronald sits in an armchair, wearing a scarf and listening to the radio. He reads a... (full context)
The Middle Class Theme Icon
Materialism Theme Icon
Fortune  Theme Icon
Gender Roles Theme Icon
...the rom, wearing a winter coat. She complains that the house is very cold, and Ronald asks her if “her room’s all right.” Eva tells Ronald that “she” would like a... (full context)
The Middle Class Theme Icon
Fortune  Theme Icon
Ronald offers Eva a drink, and she accepts after turning it down the first time. Just... (full context)
The Middle Class Theme Icon
Materialism Theme Icon
Fortune  Theme Icon
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Ronald enters the room, noting that there seems to be little alcohol left in the house,... (full context)
The Middle Class Theme Icon
Materialism Theme Icon
Fortune  Theme Icon
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Ronald returns with the drinks, and the three of them toast and drink. Geoffrey notes, “Bit... (full context)
The Middle Class Theme Icon
Materialism Theme Icon
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The bell rings, and Ronald explains that it’s Marion upstairs. Eva goes to attend to Marion. With Geoffrey, Ronald reminisces... (full context)
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Eva enters the room again. Ronald asks her how their dog is doing, and Eva tells him, “We had to …... (full context)
The Middle Class Theme Icon
Materialism Theme Icon
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Suddenly, Marion walks into the room. She greets the guests and thanks them for coming. Ronald warns her that she needs to put on warmer clothing. After Marion asks him for... (full context)
The Middle Class Theme Icon
Materialism Theme Icon
Fortune  Theme Icon
...Eva goes to see who it is. She comes back to the kitchen and tells Ronald that it’s the Hopcrofts. Ronald says “Oh, good grief,” and Geoffrey adds, “Heaven forbid.” Marion... (full context)
The Middle Class Theme Icon
Fortune  Theme Icon
...trifle?” Sidney and Jane walk into the kitchen and turn on the light, to find Ronald, Marion, Geoffrey, and Eva trying to hide in various spaces. There’s a pause, and then... (full context)
The Middle Class Theme Icon
Fortune  Theme Icon
Ronald offers Sidney and Jane drinks, and Sidney mentions that he’s just come from Walter Harrison’s... (full context)
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Materialism Theme Icon
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Jane offers Ronald and Marion their presents, which they open, confused. Jane and Sidney explain that the presents... (full context)
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Ronald tells Sidney and Jane, “You’ll have to excuse us if we’re not our usual cheery... (full context)
The Middle Class Theme Icon
Materialism Theme Icon
Fortune  Theme Icon
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...Marion dances in a shaky “classical ballet style,” while the others dance “sheepishly and reluctantly.” Ronald gets the first forfeit, an apple under the chin, followed by Eva, who gets an... (full context)