David Mamet: A Life in the Theatre

David Mamet: A Life in the Theatre

by Ira Nadel
     
 

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This comprehensive biography uses extensive theater and film archives to reveal Mamet's ideas on writing, acting, and directing, covering his beginnings in Chicago, his relationship to Judaism and reputation for machismo, as well as discussions of and excerpts from early plays and stories that have never before been referenced in print.  See more details below

Overview

This comprehensive biography uses extensive theater and film archives to reveal Mamet's ideas on writing, acting, and directing, covering his beginnings in Chicago, his relationship to Judaism and reputation for machismo, as well as discussions of and excerpts from early plays and stories that have never before been referenced in print.

Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

'Nadel aims high. . . synching up the full range of Mamet's work with his closely guarded personal affairs. It helps that the raw material on both counts is memorably vivid.' - The New York Times Book Review

'This is compelling stuff - front row seats to the life of one of America's most influential playwrights. Mamet moves me and makes me jealous like few other writers can; this little jewel of a biography helps me appreciate the man as much as the work. An essential read.' - Neil LaBute, Writer/Director

'Drawing upon David Mamet's essays, interviews, and literary works, as well as the recollections of actors and directors with whom this seminal has worked, Ira Nadel has written a thoughtful, compelling, and often gritty account of the life and career of one of the 20th century's most gifted writers. Nadel's biography skillfully juxtaposes Mamet's life in Chicago and Vermont with the machismo, marginality, and Jewish identity that inform Mamet's life and work.' - Leslie Kane, Emeritus Professor of English, Westfield State College, USA,and author Weasels and Wiseman: Ethics and Ethnicity in the Work of David Mamet

'A fascinating biography of one of America's greatest living playwrights. A must read for anyone interested in the theatre.' - Amanda Foreman, author of the Whitbread-award winning Georgiana, Duchess of Devonshire

Praise for Ira Nadel:

'Readers may find themselves swept away.' - American Theatre

'Nadel. . . has written what will surely be the standard account for some years to come.' - Weekly Standard

'The best and most complete Stoppard biography available, this is a no-brainer acquisition.' - Library Journal

'Ira Nadel lifts the lid on this most brilliant of living playwrights. . .Mr. Nadel clearly knows his subject.' - New York Sun

'His work is always scrupulous and exhaustive, coming alive.' - Book Magazine

Library Journal

Nadel (Tom Stoppard: A Life) has turned his analytical eye to Chicago-born playwright David Mamet. Mamet's plays American Buffaloand Glengarry Glen Rossput him on the theatrical map, the latter winning him a Pulitzer Prize. In addition, Nadel discusses Mamet's television and Hollywood career in depth. Mamet wrote a number of episodes for the series Hill Street Bluesand directed such successful films as House of Games, Wag the Dog, and The Verdict. Nadel explores Mamet's Chicago youth and the influence the city and his neighborhood had on his creations, his relationship to Judaism, and the emotional violence he exhibits throughout his work. He also studies the "Mamet style" of dialog in which characters speak in a clipped, rapid-fire manner that challenges the audience to pay attention. Of particular interest is Nadel's exploration of Mamet's characters and the real people who inspired them. Nadel draws on interviews, archival resources, and anecdotes from those who knew and worked with the playwright. Recommended for all theater and film study collections. (Index not seen.)
—Susan Peters

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780230378711
Publisher:
Palgrave Macmillan
Publication date:
06/05/2012
Edition description:
Reissue
Pages:
320
Product dimensions:
5.90(w) x 8.90(h) x 0.90(d)

Meet the Author

Ira Nadel is Professor in the Department of English at the University of British Columbia, Canada. He is the author of Leonard Cohen: A Life in Art (1994), Double Act: A Life of Tom Stoppard (2000), Ezra Pound: A Literary Life (2004), Joyce and His Publishers (2005), The Cambridge Introduction to Ezra Pound (2007), and David Mamet: A Life in the Theatre (2008). Nadel is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Canada, a UBC Distinguished University Scholar, and the winner of the 1996 Medal for Canadian Biography. He has also been awarded a Killam Research Prize, Mellon and Dorot Fellowships at the Ransom Humanities Research Center, University of Texas at Austin, and a Beinecke Fellowship at Yale University, USA.

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