All three acts of the play are set during Christmas parties. Christmas is often considered a holiday that celebrates kindness, generosity, and family. However, Christmas is also a holiday that epitomizes greed and conspicuous consumption. It’s a time when wealthy families who practice the holiday lavish money on gifts for themselves and show off by buying overpriced presents for other people. In all, Christmas perfectly symbolizes the contradictions of the middle class: like most of the characters in the play, it’s defined by selfishness and selflessness, childishness and maturity, community and crass materialism.
The timeline below shows where the symbol Christmas appears in Absurd Person Singular. The colored dots and icons indicate which themes are associated with that appearance.
...and then shut and forgotten about. Marion also notices the washing machine, which was Sidney’s Christmas present to Jane. She notices the dial that reads, “Whites-coloreds” and jokes, “it’s apartheid,” a... (full context)
...drinks, and the three of them toast and drink. Geoffrey notes, “Bit quieter than last Christmas, eh?” He notices the book Ronald was reading—a “saucy” thing, Ronald explains, which he found... (full context)