Reading the Plays of Wendy Wasserstein
Paperback ISBN: 1557837252
Playwright Wendy Wasserstein is, above all, a social historian. Balancing drama and comedy to write about social class in Manhattan and about Jewish-American identity, she drew inspiration from Chekhov and the comedies of S. Behrman, Moss Hart, and Noel Coward. The ideas of Betty Friedan, Germaine Greer, Gloria Steinem, and Susan Faludi also inform Wasserstein's work, which chronicles the rise and the eventual collapse of both feminism and liberalism between the late 1960s and the earliest years of the 21st century. From the first waves of feminism to the post-feminist generation, Jan Balakian's essays place Wendy Wasserstein's seven major plays, including the Pulitzer Prize-winning The Heidi Chronicles, in a historical context, showing a connection between the evolution of the women's movement in America and the conflicts within her plays. Balakian's interviews with the playwright before her death in 2006, and conversations with Wasserstein's close friends, playwright Chris Durang and director Dan Sullivan, all lend further insight into Wasserstein's political concerns. Balakian's access to handwritten pages from Wasserstein's notebooks at the Wasserstein archives at Mount Holyoke also provides readers a window into the playwright's creative process. This book features 50 black-and-white illustrations, including handwritten pages from Wendy Wasserstein's notebooks.
Break, Blow, Burn
Paperback ISBN: 0375725393
An iconoclastic intellectual and author of Sexual Personae celebrates the great poetry of the Western tradition as she looks at diverse works by poets ranging from Shakespeare and Dickinson to Plath, Hughes, and other unconventional poets. Reprint. 75,000 first printing.
The American Theatre Wing Presents The Play That Changed My Life
America's Foremost Playwrights on the Plays That Influenced Them
Paperback ISBN: 1557837406
What was the play that changed your life? What was the play that inspired you; that showed you something entirely new; that was so thrilling or surprising, breathtaking or poignant, that you were never the same? Nineteen of today's most gifted playwrights respond in this most revealing and personal book, published by Applause Books and presented by the American Theatre Wing, founder of The Tony Awards. From Edward Albee's 1935 visit to New York's Hippodrome Theatre to see Jimmy Durante (and an elephant) in Rodgers and Hart's Jumbo, to Diana Son's twelfth-grade field trip in 1983 to see Diane Venora play Hamlet at The Public Theater, from David Henry Hwang's seminal San Francisco encounter with Equus to a young Beth Henley's epiphany after seeing her mother in a "Green Bean Man costume," The Play That Changed My Life offers readers a unique peek into the theatrical influences of some of the nation's most important dramatists. The book is filled with tributes, memories, anecdotes and other insights that connect past to present and make this volume an instant "must have" for anyone who adores the theatre. Also in the book are pieces by David Auburn, Jon Robin Baitz, Nilo Cruz, Christopher Durang, Charles Fuller, A. R. Gurney, Tina Howe, David Ives, Donald Margulies, Lynn Nottage, Suzan-Lori Parks, Sarah Ruhl, John Patrick Shanley, Regina Taylor, and Doug Wright, as well as an introduction by Paula Vogel. All together, the playwrights featured here have won more than 40 Tony Awards, Pulitzer Prizes, Obies, and MacArthur genius grants.
How to Read Novels Like a Professor
A Jaunty Exploration of the World's Favorite Literary Form
Paperback ISBN: 0061340405
An upbeat primer on how to enjoy classic novels from an academic perspective traces the form's traditions and influences, offering insight into such topics as literary symbolism, the grammar of the novel, and the ways in which an author's choices impact a story's structure. Original. 60,000 first printing.
The Liberal Imagination
Essays on Literature and Society
Paperback ISBN: 1590172833
The Liberal Imagination is one of the most admired and influential works of criticism of the last century, a work that is not only a masterpiece of literary criticism but an important statement about politics and society. Published in 1950, one of the chillier moments of the Cold War, Trilling’s essays examine the promise —and limits—of liberalism, challenging the complacency of a naïve liberal belief in rationality, progress, and the panaceas of economics and other social sciences, and asserting in their stead the irreducible complexity of human motivation and the tragic inevitability of tragedy. Only the imagination, Trilling argues, can give us access and insight into these realms and only the imagination can ground a reflective and considered, rather than programmatic and dogmatic, liberalism. Writing with acute intelligence about classics like Huckleberry Finn and the novels of Henry James and F. Scott Fitzgerald, but also on such varied matters as the Kinsey Report and money in the American imagination, Trilling presents a model of the critic as both part of and apart from his society, a defender of the reflective life that, in our ever more rationalized world, seems ever more necessary—and ever more remote.
Bukowski for Beginners
Paperback ISBN: 1939994373
Charles Bukowski, poet, novelist, short-story writer, journalist, and cult figure of the dissident and rebellious was born in Germany in 1920 and died in the USA in 1994. During his life he was hailed as "laureate of American lowlife" by Time magazine literary critic Adam Kirsch of The New Yorker wrote: "The secret of Bukowski's appeal...(is that) he combines the confessional poet's promise of intimacy with the largerthan-life aplomb of a pulp-fiction hero." Bukowski was one of the most unconventional writers and cultural critics of the 20th century. He lived an unorthodox, idiosyncratic life and wrote in a style that was unique--one that is impossible to classify or categorize. His work was at times cynical or humorous, but was always brilliant and challenging. His life and work are distinguished not only by a remarkable talent for words, but also by his rejection of the dominant social and cultural values of American society. Bukowski began writing at the age of forty and published forty-five books, six of them novels. He is also considered one of the great literary voices of Los Angeles. In Bukowski For Beginners, playwright Carlos Polimeni evaluates the life and literary achievements of the cult writer whose voice of dissidence and discontent is still heard and appreciated by readers worldwide.
Essays in Divinatory Poetics
Paperback ISBN: 0996922911
Literary Nonfiction. Film. Religion & Spirituality. How does one participate (read and write) from within the membranous precinct between our multiple bodies, from within the larger rhizomic field of resonances, where much is sounding and also unsounded? By employing various "divinatory generators" (instructions, methods, trances), the essays in IDEAL SUGGESTIONS: ESSAYS IN DIVINATORY POETICS genuflect to practices that celebrate engagement with uncertainty while cultivating strategies through which one might collaborate with both rupture and rapture.
Introducing Literary Criticism
A Graphic Guide
Paperback ISBN: 1848319045
A brand new literary title in the renowned graphic novel-style of the Introducing Graphic Guide series. From Plato to Virginia Woolf, Structuralism to Practical Criticism, Introducing Literary Criticism charts the history and development of literary criticism into a rich and complex discipline. Tackling disputes over the value and meaning of literature, and exploring theoretical and practical approaches, this unique illustrated guide will help readers of all levels to get more out of their reading. Owen Holland is a doctoral student at St Catharine's college, Cambridge, where he teaches the history of literary criticism.