Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf?

( 19 )

Overview

A dark comedy, Who's afraid of Virginia Woolf? portrays husband and wife George and Martha in a searing night of dangerous fun and games. By the evening's end, a stunning, almost unbearable revelation provides a climax that has shocked audiences for years.
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Overview

A dark comedy, Who's afraid of Virginia Woolf? portrays husband and wife George and Martha in a searing night of dangerous fun and games. By the evening's end, a stunning, almost unbearable revelation provides a climax that has shocked audiences for years.
Read More Show Less

Editorial Reviews

NY Journal-American
This is a Big One.
Women's Wear Daily
...a scorching, scalding, revealing and completely engrossing drama.
NY Herald-Tribune
...a brilliant piece of writing.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780451158710
  • Publisher: Penguin Group (USA) Incorporated
  • Publication date: 3/28/1983
  • Format: Mass Market Paperback
  • Edition description: Reprint
  • Pages: 272
  • Sales rank: 60,882
  • Product dimensions: 4.30 (w) x 6.86 (h) x 0.76 (d)

Meet the Author

Edward Albee is one of a handful of our country's most important living playwrights. He has won numerous awards, including three Pulitzer Prizes (A Delicate Balance, Seascape, and Three Tall Women) and three Tony Awards (Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf?, A Delicate Balance, and The Goat, or Who is Sylvia?). In 1996 he received a Kennedy Center Lifetime Achievement Award and was presented with the National Medal of Arts by President Clinton.

At the Kennedy Center Honors Ceremony, Albee was praised for his impact on American drama: "Albee's plays, with their intensity, their grappling with modern themes, and their experiments in form, startled critics and audiences alike while changing the landscape of American drama."

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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4.5
( 19 )
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Sort by: Showing all of 20 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted December 22, 2011

    Don't buy this REVISED edition

    This is the "revised edition". I don't recommend it. Key scenes and details have been removed from the original version of the script by Albee. As a result, the character of Honey is much more of a "secondary" role and, quite frankly, doesn't make sense. Albee also cuts out important references to "the kid", which are not an improvement. The only thing Albee added to this new version was more coarse language. Find the original version of the script somewhere. The original is wonderful. Don't buy, read, or produce this "revised edition." (I saw it on Broadway in 2005. It just doesn't compare to Albee's script from the 1960s.)

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 29, 2004

    WHO'S AFRAID OF VIRGINIA WOOLF IS A CLASSIC

    This is an extrodinary booik and a film, I find this book oustanding and a marvelous piece of film writing!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted September 5, 2004

    A classic play

    Plunged into a world of accusations, dishonesty, and pain, Edward Albee¿s ¿Who¿s Afraid of Virginia Woolf?¿ paints a story of a harsh, problematic couple and their encounters with a seemingly perfect young pair. Set in the house of Martha and George on a college campus, Nick and Honey are innocently invited over after a party. Unfortunately, they are ignorant of the woes and anguish of the George and Martha relationship. They are shocked and almost disgusted by the devastatingly hurtful way Martha and George treat each other. Throughout the novel the reader is subjected to an all too realistic modern world where relationships are full of hate and spite, and are familiarized with the virtues that have been lost for decades. Ironically, one could leave feeling better about one¿s own relationships after the feeling of alarm when reading about George and Martha¿s. Apparently getting a sick enjoyment out of vehemently hurting and maddening the other, George and Martha have serious problems with their marriage. Their anger is fueled further it seems by Nick and Honey¿s visit, who are ostensibly the proper, perfect pair. Nick and Honey are uncomfortable with the situation at first, until Honey gets drunk and Nick begins to flirt with Martha. George acerbates his wife to the point of where Martha¿s threats to be unfaithful with Nick are finally realized. In return, George fabricates a lie, knowing it will hurt Martha to the point of an emotional breakdown. Their marriage represented many all too real aspects of modern culture. Benevolence, respect, and sympathy are all merits that have been lost in today¿s society. Yet, at the same time, Albee created a parallel where it was obvious they were in love as well, especially at the end. It was evident that while George and Martha indubitably weren¿t happy with the marriage, both were afraid of never finding happiness without the other. But by playing revenge and purposely tormenting each other, George and Martha seem to only further distance themselves from their spouse. ¿Who¿s Afraid of Virginia Woolf?¿ will always be a testament to how much society has changed, and gives a realistic insight into the lives of a married couple. While reading one realizes the rare virtues that should be kept and treasured and this is why the play has become a valuable classic.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 2, 2004

    A powerful and unsettling story of loss, pain, marriage, and desperation.

    Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf is a read like no other. An over-the-top drama about the many demons of our past that we have swiped under the rug and how they explode onto the surface. Here are the indelible George and Martha, a couple torn apart by years of hatred, desire, sexual frustration, and malice. They take in another couple, Nick and Honey who become there pawns in George and Martha's belittling and embarrassment of each other. The agony, and unbearable misery that these four main characters face in there quest for deliverance is what makes this play a mesmerizing and at times disturbing view of marriage and the threat of divorce.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 11, 2004

    Correction

    The play takes place in New Carthage not New England. New Carthage is representative of Babylon and hence history. Thank you.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 25, 2003

    Greatest Play Ever Written

    Albee's 'Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf' is, in my opinion, the greatest play ever written. The characters of George and Martha are so insane, rude, and almost sleazy that they are practically embarassing their guests. You can tell that George wants to impress Nick and Honey but can't hold back from fighting with Martha. You can tell that Nick is embarassed to be around these people and that he can't help but show the embarassment and hold back the anger. And you can tell that Honey is just sickened by these people at some points and she adores them at other points. Albee's genious is shown here, especially with the 'Humiliate the Host' and 'Get the Guests' scenes and all of George and Martha's monologues. As an actor, I would love to play Nick or George on stage. Preferably Nick.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 12, 2002

    Read to Understand the Insanity, Drunkeness,Psychological Complications of Parents Who Lost A Child.

    Read to Understand the Insanity, Drunkeness,Psychological Complications of Parents Who Lost A Child. Majority of Parents who have Lost a Child Divorice. This movie lends itself to the irresponsiblity, carlessness, argumentative, blaming, numbness (alcohol as the choice to desensitize the pain),heart wrenching lives parents who have lost a child can live through. When one reads it, they feel as if they too are going to go nuts if they have to read any more. If one can view these thoughts as the mind of a person who has suffered the death of a loved one, one might see the confusion, tormented agony, dissaray, illusion they suffer. Get with the program review critics, there's more depth here than just nasty words, sexuality, and mind games filmed. (I had to view this movie(not the book) for an american playhouse college course.)

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 26, 2000

    amazing

    the most important piece of literature of the 20th century, period.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 29, 2000

    FOR THE BORDERLINE INSANE

    be a first-hand witness to the diminishing of the final strands of sanity a new england couple of middle-aged alcoholics has holding their tired, fabricated lives together. this account of a late-night meeting between four flawed but intriguing characters will leave the reader naked with the equatable guilt of a witness to a rape. leave all of your preconcieved notions of what pain is behind. this is truly a portrait of humilliation and broken dreams.

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