Eugene O'Neill (1888-1953) is one of the most significant forces in the history of American theater. With no uniquely American tradition to guide him, O'Neill introduced various dramatic techniques, which subsequently became staples of the U.S. theater. By 1914 he had written twelve one-act and two long plays. Of this early work, only Thirst and Other One-act plays (1914) was originally published. From this point on, O'Neill's work falls roughly into three phases: the early plays, written from 1914 to 1921 (The Long Voyage Home, The Moon of the Caribbees, Beyond the Horizon, Anna Christie); a variety of full-length plays for Broadway (Desire Under the Elms; Great God Brown; Ah, Wilderness!); and the last, great plays, written between 1938 and his death (The Iceman Cometh, Long Day's Journey Into Night, A Moon for the Misbegotten). Eugene O'Neill is a four-time Pulitzer Prize winner, and he was awarded the Nobel Prize in literature in 1936.
Early Playsby Eugene O'Neill, Jeffrey H. Richards (Introduction)
This volume brings to readers a selection of Eugene O'Neill's early work, written between 1914 and 1921 and produced for the stage between 1916 and 1922. Included here are: seven one-act plays, The Moon of the Caribbees, Bound East for Cardiff, In the Zone, The Long Voyage Home, Ile, Where the Cross Is Made, and The Rope; and five full-length plays, Beyond the Horizon, The Straw, Anna Christie, and the classics The Emperor Jones and The Hairy Ape. The majority of the plays are heavily influenced by German expressionism-Freud, Nietzsche, Strindberg, and the radical leftist politics in which O'Neill was involved during his youth. Included in this unique collection is the little known and highly autobiographical play, The Straw, which draws on O'Neill's confinement in the Gaylord Farm Sanatorium.
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