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Biography of one of the greatest of modern playwrights, Arthur Miller (1915-2005).This is the long-awaited biography of one of the twentieth century's greatest playwrights whose postwar decade of work earned him international critical and popular acclaim.Arthur Miller was a prominent figure in American literature and cinema for over sixty years, writing a wide variety of plays - including The Crucible, A View from the Bridge, All My Sons, and Death of a Salesman - which are still performed, studied and lauded throughout the world.Born in 1915 to moderately affluent Jewish-American parents, Miller wrote during a fascinating time in American history. The Great Depression was a period of deprivation for many that left an indelible mark on the national psyche, and, like many, Miller found hope for the beleaguered common man in Communism. The Second World War elevated the common man to war hero, but when the Cold War subsequently began, the ugly elements of American conservatism freely persecuted writers and artists who had embraced Communism. Miller was among them. His refusal to give evidence against others to the notorious House Un-American Activities Committee in 1956 gave him a heroic role to play. In that same year, Arthur Miller momentously married the young actress Marilyn Monroe, a marriage that remains famous to this day. Christopher Bigsby's gripping, meticulously researched biography, based on boxes of papers made available to him before Miller's death, offers new insights into their marriage, and sheds new light on how their relationship informed Miller's subsequent great plays. After his death in 2005, many respected actors, directors and producers paid tribute to Miller, calling him 'the last great practitioner of the American stage'. Christopher Bigsby's supremely authoritative biography does full justice to Miller's life and art.
The second volume of the definitive biography of one of the greatest modern playwrights, Arthur Miller (1915-2005).The first volume of Christopher Bigsby's award-winning biography of Arthur Miller was hailed as a masterpiece and the definitive account of Miller's early years. This is the second half of Miller's captivating story, covering his life from 1962 to his death in 2005.In 1962, Miller's legacy was incomplete. Ahead lay eighteen plays, five films, a novella and a handful of stories. On a personal level, 1962 saw the death of his second wife, the iconographic Marilyn Monroe, and his marriage to the photographer Inge Morath who was to transform him as a writer and a person. A visit to Mauthaussen concentration camp and to the Frankfurt trials of Auschwitz-Birkenau guards moved the Holocaust to the centre of his attention and he became a more directly political person. Christopher Bigsby brilliantly and elegantly maps out the journey of Miller's life and work. Shedding new light on Miller's complexities, and revealing unknown facts about his public and private life, Bigsby shares new insights and perspectives crucial to an understanding of one of the world's greatest playwrights.
Arthur Miller is regarded as one of the most important playwrights of the twentieth century, and his work continues to be widely performed and studied around the world. This updated Companion includes Miller's work since the publication of the first edition in 1997 - the plays Mr Peters' Connections, Resurrection Blues, and Finishing the Picture, recent film adaptations, and key productions of his plays since his death in 2005. Book jacket.
One of America's most powerful and original dramatists, August Wilson offered an alternative history of the twentieth century, as seen from the perspective of black Americans. He celebrated the lives of those seemingly pushed to the margins of national life, but who were simultaneously protagonists of their own drama and evidence of a vital and compelling community. Decade by decade, he told the story of a people with a distinctive history who forged their own future, aware of their roots in another time and place, but doing something more than just survive. Wilson deliberately addressed black America, but in doing so discovered an international audience. Alongside chapters addressing Wilson's life and career, and the wider context of his plays, this Companion dedicates individual chapters to each play in his ten-play cycle, which are ordered chronologically, demonstrating Wilson's notion of an unfolding history of the twentieth century.
This collection of specially written essays offers both student and theatregoer a guide to one of the most celebrated American dramatists working today. Readers will find the general and accessible descriptions and analyses provide the perfect introduction to Mamet's work. The volume covers the full range of Mamet's writing, including now classic plays such as American Buffalo and Glengarry Glen Ross, and his more recent work, Boston Marriage, among others, as well as his films, such as The Verdict and Wag the Dog. Additional chapters also explore Mamet and acting, Mamet as director, his fiction, and a survey of Mamet criticism. The Companion to David Mamet is an introduction which will prepare the reader for future work by this important and influential writer.
The Cambridge Companion to Modern American Culture offers a comprehensive, authoritative and accessible overview of the cultural themes and intellectual issues that drive the dominant culture of the twentieth century. This companion explores the social, political and economic forces that have made America what it is today. It shows how these contexts impact upon twentieth-century American literature, cinema and art. An international team of contributors examines the special contribution of African Americans and of immigrant communities to the variety and vibrancy of modern America. The essays range from art to politics, popular culture to sport, immigration and race to religion and war. Varied, extensive and challenging, this Companion is essential reading for students and teachers of American studies around the world. It is the most accessible and useful introduction available to an exciting range of topics in modern American culture.
Something has happened in the world of television drama. For the last decade and a half America has assumed a dominant position. Novelists, screenwriters and journalists, who would once have had no interest in writing for television, indeed who often despised it, suddenly realised that it was where America could have a dialogue with itself. The new television drama was where writers could engage with the social and political realities of the time, interrogating the myths and values of a society moving into a new century. Familiar genres have been reinvented, from crime fiction to science fiction. This is a book as much about a changing America as about the television series which have addressed it, from The Sopranos and The Wire to The West Wing, Mad Men and Treme, in what has emerged as the second golden age of American television drama.
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