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Playwrights on Playwriting: The Meaning and…

Playwrights on Playwriting: The Meaning and Making of Modern Drama from… (1961)

by Toby Cole

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A compendium of playwrights who are discussing playwriting, and their own plays. Published around the middle of the last century, much of this seems dated at times, at least in terms of what theatre can and can't do, or should and shouldn't be, but a lot of it is still relevant to discussions that are being held today. Some of the things the playwrights talk about sound pretentious, others sound silly, and still others just plain wrong. But there is a lot of interesting stuff in here, too, and the playwrights are almost all ones that are familiar to anyone who is committed to theatre. One big downside is that there are no women included among the playwrights, though I'm sure there must be stuff out there written by some interesting playwrights at the time, playwrights such as Lillian Hellman or Gertrude Stein, or several other women who were writing plays and getting them produced. It might also have helped balance some of the casual misogyny that is so common among works of the period, not just in their plays but in the way they talk about their own or other people's plays. Overall, a worthwhile work, though perhaps a bit disappointing to find out that most of these men are not always brilliant. ( )
  Devil_llama | Feb 6, 2019 |
Archer, Brecht, Chekhov, Cocteau, Duerrenmatt, Eliot, Fry, Galsworthy, Giraudoux, Ibsen, Ionesco, Lorca, Meterlinck, Miller, O’Casey, O’Neill, Osborne, Pirandello, Sartre, Shaw, Strindberg, Synge, Toller, Wilder, Williams, Yeats, Zola
  mmckay | May 16, 2006 |
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Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Toby Coleprimary authorall editionscalculated
Wilder, ThorntonContributorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0809005298, Paperback)

Drama, Plays, Theatre

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:11:47 -0400)

(see all 2 descriptions)

For anyone interested in drama, Playwrights on Playwriting: From Ibsen to Ionesco offers revealing and astute insights on modern theater and the creation of plays. The book gathers the opinions and theories of the greatest names in the past 200 years of drama, among them Anton Chekhov, George Bernard Shaw, Federico Garcia Lorca, Eugene O'Neill, Bertolt Brecht, Tenessee Williams, Sean O'Casey, and Arthur Miller, to name a few. In the first part of the book, "Credos and Concepts," the playwrights offer their differing philosophies on the dynamics of theatrical performance and the changes in drama since Aristotle. In the second part, "Creations," the same dramatists look at specific plays of their own, commenting on their intended goals and the works' overall success. A unique and enlightening collection, Playwrights on Playwriting is an essential resource for the enthusiast of theater.… (more)

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