Three Uses of the Knife: On the Nature and Purpose of Drama

Three Uses of the Knife: On the Nature and Purpose of Drama

by David Mamet
     
 

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What makes good drama? How does drama matter in our lives? One of America´s most respected writers reminds us of the secret powers of the play. Pulitzer Prize-winner David Mamet celebrates the absolute necessity of drama -and the experience of great plays -in our lurching attempts to make sense of ourselves and our world.
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Overview

What makes good drama? How does drama matter in our lives? One of America´s most respected writers reminds us of the secret powers of the play. Pulitzer Prize-winner David Mamet celebrates the absolute necessity of drama -and the experience of great plays -in our lurching attempts to make sense of ourselves and our world.

Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"[Mamet] brings his usual passion and provocation to his treatise on what makes good drama." —Vanity Fair

"No modern playwright has been bolder or more brilliant." —The New Yorker

"Pinter, Albee, Miller. They're all looking over Mamet's shoulder." —New York

"David Mamet adds yet another segment to a body of work that puts him among the great writers of this, or any other, time." —Joe Mantegna

Library Journal
One of America's leading living playwrights has crafted three short essays beginning with the premise that it is "our nature to dramatize." The belief in the centrality of drama to our daily lives and the centrality of our daily lives to good drama is the recurrent theme of his ruminations here. While he disdains the current vogue for "problem plays," he avoids attacking any of his contemporaries or their works. And without offering a how-to guide for aspiring playwrights, he provides some interesting thoughts on the inevitable difficulty in creating a convincing second act. Known and respected for his ability to create hyperrealistic dialog, Mamet ultimately reveals the theoretical justification for the sort of drama he writes so well. The text reads a bit like a lecture and never quite convinces the reader that this is a fundamental redefinition of drama. Still, it will be compelling to students of theater and serves as a good companion to Mamet's advice to actors, True and False (LJ 10/1/97). Recommended for academic and large public libraries.Douglas McClemont, New York
The New Yorker
No modern playwright has been bolder or more brilliant.
New York
Pinter, Albee, Miller. They're all looking over Mamet's shoulder.
Vanity Fair
[Mamet] brings his usual passion and provacation to his treatise on what makes good drama.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780375704239
Publisher:
Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group
Publication date:
06/28/2000
Pages:
96
Sales rank:
367,058
Product dimensions:
5.19(w) x 7.99(h) x 0.29(d)

Meet the Author

David Mamet is the author of the plays Oleanna; Glengarry Glen Ross, for which he won a Pulitzer Prize and a New York Drama Critics Circle Award; Speed the Plow; and Sexual Perversity in Chicago, among others. His films include, as screenwriter, The Postman Always Rings Twice, The Verdict, The Untouchables, The Edge, and Wag of the Dog, and as writer/director, House of Games, Homicide, Things Change, and The Spanish Prisoner. He is also the author of children's books and four books of essays, Writing in Restaurants, Some Freaks, The Cabin, and Make Believe Town; two novels, The Village and The Old Religion and a book on acting, True and False.

Columbia University Press

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