I ain't on oith and I ain't in Heaven, get me? I'm in de middel tryin' to seperate em, takin all de woist punches from bot' of 'em. Maybe dat's whay dey call Hell, huh?
This quotation, found in Scene Eight, indicates Yank's displacement on Earth. Earth and Heaven both represent states of happiness, neither of which Yank can find his way into. Yank is the victim of a society that won't "let him in" or find belonging anywhere. Yank describes himself as receiving the "woist punches"—actual, physical blows. Yank has been weakened both emotionally and physically through the course of the play. Yank sees himself as the lone victim of a great assault and cannot find anyone to sympathize with him.
O'Neill suggests a similarity between uncaring capitalists and uncaring socialists within society. Both, as Anna Massa puts it in "Intention and Effect in The Hairy Ape" suggest "brother hoods of workers and criminals." Thus, O'Neill does not suggest "refuge" in either capitalism or socialism for Yank, but reveals how each can be destructive to the individual. Yank has been assaulted by a society that has no tolerance for "not belonging" and is consequently left in "de middel" as close to hell as Yank can imagine.