The adding machine by Elmer Rice

The Adding Machine by Elmer Rice Elmer Rice’s play, The Adding Machine, is set in a workplace context. The emergence of an adding machine results in an unprecedented conflict between Mr. Zero and his boss. This follows his reaction to the fact that his 25 years of accounting would be replaced by an adding machine (Gabrielle and Sprinchorn 281). Being Mr. Zero elicits a number of means relative to the context within which Mr. Zero is presented. To be Mr. Zero means the ability and capacity to work. He has practiced accounting for 25 years, showing that he had the ability and capacity to work.Most importantly, being Mr. Zero is also associated with being oblivious to some serious life aspects. Mr. Zero seems to pay no attention to his needs, desires, and wants in life (Gabrielle and Sprinchorn 307). In other words, he observes a lifestyle that is notably characterized by zero personal concerns. He takes no action to develop personally and professionally, amid serious changes that are being realized around him. For example, the emergence of the adding machine is not instantaneous. However, Mr. Zero takes no effort to maneuver the situation. Conscious awareness on needs, desires, and wants would be expected for Mr. Zero, but unfortunately this is not forthcoming.Mr.1, 2, 3…is associated with being responsive to what is happening around an individual. Most importantly, it means taking charge and responsibility when the need arises. Here, dormancy is outweighed and outperformed by being active. Mr.1, 2, 3 has nothing to do with obliviousness. Essentially, there are actions, choices, and alternatives as far as Mr.1, 2, 3 are concerned.Killing the boss did not solve the issue between Mr. Zero, the boss, and the adding machine. If anything, Mr. Zero commits a crime for which he is tried, found guilty, and subsequently executed. In the context of being Mr. Zero, there does not seem to be any choice for his actions. The man is oblivious to his life and he, therefore, lives the outcome of whatever he does. Given that he is an accountant professional, though zero in nature, he is responsible for himself and who he is.The Elysian Fields mark a transition in Mr. Zero’s life. Mr. Zero’s execution marked his death, but the Elysian Fields bring him back when he is said to have woken up in a heaven-like setting (Gabrielle and Sprinchorn 329). Mr. Zero killed his boss over an adding machine that was set to replace him at the company. In Elysian Fields he wakes up to operate the machine, implying that his role had relatively changed. The Elysian Fields also make Mr. Zero realize his self-worth.The Mr. Zero scenario can be aligned with Elmer Rice’s background. His life from childhood through adulthood was characterized by background-based challenges that finally shaped his personality, career, and professionalism. Elmer Rice’s family and social experiences influenced the presentation of Mr. Zero and Mr. 1, 2, 3. The idea is to capture obliviousness to life and the series of change that people undergo from time to time. A number of Mr. Zero’s experiences in the play can be associated with Elmer Rice’s personal life.Works CitedGabrielle, Cody, and Sprinchorn Evert. The Columbia Encyclopedia of Modern Drama, Volume 2. New York: Columbia University Press. Print.