Masterpieces of 20th-Century American Drama

Overview

American playwrights have made enormous contributions to world drama during the last century, and their works are widely read and performed. This reference conveniently introduces 10 of the most important modern American plays read by students. An introductory essay concisely overviews modern American drama, and each of the chapters that follow examines a particular play. Among the plays discussed are Thornton Wilder's Our Town, Arthur Miller's Death of a Salesman, Lorraine Hansberry's A Raisin in the Sun, and ...

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Masterpieces of 20th-Century American Drama (Greenwood Introduces Literary Masterpieces Series)

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Overview

American playwrights have made enormous contributions to world drama during the last century, and their works are widely read and performed. This reference conveniently introduces 10 of the most important modern American plays read by students. An introductory essay concisely overviews modern American drama, and each of the chapters that follow examines a particular play. Among the plays discussed are Thornton Wilder's Our Town, Arthur Miller's Death of a Salesman, Lorraine Hansberry's A Raisin in the Sun, and August Wilson's The Piano Lesson. Each chapter includes a biography, a plot summary, an analysis of the play's themes, characters, and dramatic art, and a review of its historical background and reception. Chapters list works for further reading, and the volume closes with a selected, general bibliography.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

"After a succinct overview, Abbotson presents 10 masterpieces by some of America's best-known playwrights, paying some small tribute to gender and ethnicity. From Thorton Wilder's Our Town to August Wilson's The Piano Lesson, each play is introduced with a short biography of the playwright and is followed by several pages of information on each: plot summary, character development, themes, historical background, literary style and devices, place of the work in the playwrights' oeuvre and 20th-century drama, critical reception, and suggested readings….[c]lear and concise analyses of these plays for libraries still needing such a reference source."

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School Library Journal

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780313332234
  • Publisher: ABC-CLIO, Incorporated
  • Publication date: 9/28/2005
  • Series: Greenwood Introduces Literary Masterpieces Series
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 232
  • Product dimensions: 6.30 (w) x 9.40 (h) x 0.90 (d)

Meet the Author

SUSAN C.W. ABBOTSON has taught English for more than 15 years, first at the high school level and now at Rhode Island College. Her previous books include Thematic Guide to Modern Drama (2003), Student Companion to Arthur Miller (2000), and Understanding Death of a Salesman (1999), all available from Greenwood Press.

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Table of Contents

Introduction to 20TH-Century American Drama

Thornton Wilder's Our Town (1938)

Tennessee Williams's A Streetcar Named Desire (1947)

Arthur Miller's Death of a Salesman (1949)

Arthur Miller's The Crucible (1953)

Eugene O'Neill's Long Day's Journey Into Night (1956)

Lorraine Hansberry's A Raisin in the Sun (1959)

Edward Albee's Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf? (1962)

Sam Shepard's Buried Child (1978)

David Mamet's Glengarry Glen Ross (1984)

August Wilson's The Piano Lesson (1987)

General Bibliography

Index

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