Family entails the first people we meet immediately after birth. In addition, families are made of people who are genetically close and are this fact gives them common interests, tastes and preferences. People’s emotions and characters are always defined by those they are close to and are directly affected by this closeness; this is why Eugene O’Neill’s play A Long Day’s Journey into the Night portrays an idea of naturalism that flows through people within a family unit throughout their lives (Brantley: New York Times June 21, 2012). Realism is mainly depicted by naturalism. Naturalism dictates the chains of events, occasions, lives and the people at large. What shape the human character are the environment, social conditions, and the hereditary factors; that binds families. A critical analysis of the play vividly shows that it is an idea of naturalism on how family influences the lives of its members in a manner that is inevitable.
Naturalism and materialism in the context of different scopes of life and its pre-determinants are basis of the Marxist theory. Families are the units that greatly support one another throughout life. People face many challenges in life and needs come in different forms. The play exhibits the essence of naturalism, Marxism and the need of family; which are evidenced by the constant disturbing realities shown in the play right from the start all the way to the end. At the beginning, James’s wife, Mary, is being treated from morphine addiction and at some point tends to abandon the habit, and being restored into the normal life. However, this is only short-lived. It is clear that the stress in the family is contributing to the scenarios (Brantley: New York Times, May 7, 2003). Edmund’s bad health is distressing the family and James and Jamie’s alcoholism are apparently contributing to Mary’s morphine addiction even if she tries to avoid it. This is a clear example of how the negative elements in a family negatively