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About Arthur Miller
Arthur Miller (1915-2005) was born in New York City in 1915 and studied at the University of Michigan. During his lifetime he was celebrated as the pre-eminent playwright of his generation and won numerous awards for his work including two New York Drama Critics' Circle Awards, two Emmy awards and three Tony Awards for his plays, as well as a Tony Award for Lifetime Achievement. His 1949 play Death of a Salesman was the first play to scoop all three major US awards: the New York Critics Circle Award, a Tony Award for Best Author and the Pulitzer Prize for Drama. His many plays include All My Sons, Death of a Salesman, The Crucible, A View from the Bridge, A Memory of Two Mondays, After the Fall, Incident at Vichy, The Price, The Creation of the World and Other Business, and The American Clock; later plays include Broken Glass, Resurrection Blues and the aptly-titled Finishing the Picture. His other published work includes the novel Focus, The Misfits which was filmed in 1960, two collections of short stories, the memoir Timebends and various volumes of non-fiction including three books in collaboration with his wife, photographer Inge Morath.
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Books By Arthur Miller
This book tells the fascinating story of Miller's time in China and the paradoxes of directing a tragedy about American capitalism in a Communist country, and features photographs throughout by Inge Morath.
In this edition, Miller's diary is given a contemporary context as the production and process is investigated against the backdrop of twenty-first century China and its theatre, through a new introduction by Claire Conceison, Professor of Theatre Studies at Duke University.
'As wise and witty and funny and brave as any of his plays' - Louis Auchincloss
'Wholly admirable' - Anthony Burgess
Arthur Miller's plays have held the world's stages for almost half a century. Among them are Death of a Salesman, The Crucible, and All My Sons, which have been read and performed countless times across the world. His memoir, Timebends, shows that the life of the man is as compelling as his plays.
With passion, wit and candour, Miller recalls his childhood in Harlem and Brooklyn in the 1920s and the Depression; his successes and failures in the theatre and in Hollywood; the formation of his political beliefs that, two decades later, brought him into confrontations with the House Committee of Un-American Activities; and his later work on behalf of human rights as the president of PEN International.
He writes with astonishing perception and tenderness of Marilyn Monroe, his second wife, as well as the host of famous and infamous characters that have intersected with his adventurous life. Revealing and deeply moving, Timebends is Miller's love letter to the twentieth century: its energy, its humour, its chaos and moral struggles.
Willy Loman is an ageing travelling salesman haunted and driven by empty dreams of prosperity and success. Justly celebrated as one of the most famous dramatisations of the failure of the American Dream, the play's moral and political purpose is perfectly counterbalanced by a powerful and moving human drama of a man trying to make his way in the world and of the human flaws that lead to the shattering of his family and of their idol.
This Student Edition features an extensive introduction by Enoch Brater which makes it the perfect edition for students of literature and drama. It includes a chronology of Miller's life and times; a summary of the plot, commentary on the characters, themes, language and context, a production history of the play and questions for further study.
In a small tight-knit community gossip and rumour spread like wildfire inflaming personal grievances until no-one is safe from accusation and vengeance. The Crucible is Miller's classic dramatisation of the witch-hunt and trials that besieged the Puritan community of Salem in 1692. Seen as a chilling parallel to the McCarthyism and repressive culture of fear that gripped America in the 1950s, the play's timeless relevance and appeal remains as strong as when the play opened on Broadway in 1953.
Quentin is a successful lawyer in New York, but inside his head he is struggling with his own sense of guilt and the shadows of his past relationships. One of these an ill-fated marriage to the charming and beautiful Maggie, who went from operating a switchboard to become a self-destructive star - a singer everyone wanted a piece of.
After the Fall is often seen as the most explicitly autobiographical of Arthur Miller's plays, and Maggie as an unflinching portrait of Miller's ex-wife Marilyn Monroe, only two years after her suicide. But in its psychological acuity and depth, and its brilliant, dreamlike structure, it is a literary, and not just biographical, masterpiece.
All five plays were written by Arthur Miller within a ten-year period which began with his first Broadway hit in 1947: 'With the production of All My Sons, wrote Brooks Atkinson in the New York Times, 'the theatre has acquired a genuine new talent.' This hit was followed by an even greater play: Death of a Salesman. 'A great play of our day', wrote the New York Herald Tribune and the play has gone on to become the classic American tragedy of Willy Loman, a salesman who becomes disillusioned with the American dream.
The Crucible (1953) was produced during the McCarthy era and became a parable of the witch-hunting practises of a government rooting out Communists. A View from the Bridge (1955) concerns the lives of longshoremen in the Brooklyn waterfront and has remained one of Miller's most produced plays. A Memory of Two Mondays, a one-act play, was written as a companion piece to A View from the Bridge.
'The greatest American dramatist of our age'. Evening Standard