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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
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As Miller's first successful play on Broadway, All My Sons launched his career and established Miller as America's social critic. A devastating indictment of war-profiteering, the play exposes the awful price paid by self-interest and greed fostered by capitalism. Set in 1947 in the Keller family's home in the mid-west, a shattered apple tree stands as a reminder of the pilot-son, lost during the war. Joe Keller has evaded justice for his part in the deaths of pilots caused by faulty engine parts manufactured in his factory, but the family is unable to put the past behind them.
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'Reading the book feel[s] like gaining privileged access to Miller ... Fascinating and salutary' Daily Telegraph
During his lifetime the great American playwright Arthur Miller published two highly regarded collections of stories: I Don't Need You Any More (1967) and Homely Girl, a Life (1995). Shortly after his death in 2005 a final collection, Presence (2007), appeared. Now, all eighteen of these stories are gathered together in one volume for the first time, including the six from Presence.
In his plays Miller took on the big themes of the day, putting stories of the Depression, wartime deceit and the McCarthy era on stage with an energy and passion not seen before and rarely since. In these stories he turns his attention to smaller, more intimate themes, informed by an unusual sensuality and delicacy. This essential collection offers a fresh perspective of the great writer and his work, with his famously profound insight, humanism, empathy and wit.
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Ever since it was first performed in 1949, Death of a Salesman has been recognized as a milestone of the American theater. In the person of Willy Loman, the aging, failing salesman who makes his living riding on a smile and a shoeshine, Arthur Miller redefined the tragic hero as a man whose dreams are at once insupportably vast and dangerously insubstantial. He has given us a figure whose name has become a symbol for a kind of majestic grandiosity—and a play that compresses epic extremes of humor and anguish, promise and loss, between the four walls of an American living room.
"By common consent, this is one of the finest dramas in the whole range of the American theater." —Brooks Atkinson, The New York Times
"So simple, central, and terrible that the run of playwrights would neither care nor dare to attempt it." —Time
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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.
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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.
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'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.
This fifth volume of Arthur Miller's work contains two plays from the early nineties: his highly acclaimed The Last Yankee (1993), which the Guardian called "a fine and moving play . . . Like all Miller's best work, it effortlessly links private and public worlds by connecting personal desperation to insane American values"; and The Ride Down Mount Morgan (1991), which explores themes of bigamy and betrayal, described as "searching, scorching, harsh but compassionate" (Sunday Times).
Also contained in the volume is Almost Everybody Wins, the original version of the screenplay Arthur Miller wrote for Karel Reisz's film, "Everybody Wins".
This fourth anthology features Arthur Miller's two early plays, The Golden Years, a historical tragedy about Montezuma's destruction at the hands of Cortez, and The Man Who Had All the Luck, a fable about human freedom and individual responsibility, are brought together in this volume.
It also features two of his contemporary shorter plays, I Can't Remember Anything and Clara, first presented on a double bill as Danger! Memory. The latter focus on the importance and dangers of remembering the past, while the early plays, written at the time of the Second World War, mark the emergence of a drama in which public issues are rooted in private anxieties and chart the beginning of Miller's career that was one of the most distinguished in dramatic history.
First produced in 1944 and revived in London in 2008, The Man Who Had All the Luck is a mesmerising drama in which the author's brilliance and characteristic qualities are already evident:
The fourth volume of Miller's plays has been reissued with a new cover and features an introduction by the author and a chronology of his work.
Featuring two plays from the 1990s and his final two plays (2002 and 2004), it offers the first ever publication of Miller's final play, Finishing the Picture. Inspired by his experience during the filming of The Misfits with his then wife Marilyn Monroe, the play was completed and produced at the Goodman Theatre, Chicago, just months before the playwright's death in February 2005.
Broken Glass (1994) is set in Brooklyn in 1938 and intertwines a woman's obsession with the news from Germany that government thugs are smashing Jewish stores, with her strange relationship with her husband. "It balances private lives with public morality. . . it is also an amazingly full-blooded piece, bursting with pain and passion." (Daily Telegraph).
Mr Peters' Connections (1998) is an unforgettable journey through one man's mind at a time of suspended consciousness, where the living and dead intermingle in his memory. Resurrection Blues (2002) is Miller's astonishing black comedy set in a South American banana republic, that satirises global politics and the predatory nature of a media saturated culture.
The volume also features a chronology of the writer's work and an introduction by Enoch Brater, professor of English Literature at the University of Michigan.