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Cat on a Hot Tin Roof by Tennessee Williams

Cat on a Hot Tin Roof (1955)

by Tennessee Williams

Other authors: See the other authors section.

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Showing 1-5 of 19 (next | show all)
mendacity ! love Burl Ives not to mention PN and ET - a quick read that explains a lot about the south ( )
  frahealee | Dec 4, 2017 |
Title: Cat on a Hot Tin Roof

Publisher: Secker & Warburg, London


Book Condition:Near Fine
  TeamYankeeKiwi | Aug 17, 2017 |
Three act play staged over the course of a single day in a bed/sitting room of a Mississippi plantation in the '50s. Big Daddy is sick and his two sons with their wives/children have returned to celebrate his birthday/ensure their interests are upheld. Presents two versions of Act III, the original is by far superior - the altered version caters to pansy audiences and their need for rosier endings. The tempo of the dialogue is remarkable, draws you forcibly onward - setting it down mid-act was impossible. Also, I had no idea Paul Newman was so dreamy - the image on his pasta sauce jar doesn't do him justice.

"Time goes by so fast. Nothin' can outrun it. Death commences too early - almost before you're half-acquainted with life - you meet with the other." (Big Mama)

"Always lived with too much space around me to be infected by ideas of other people." (Big Daddy)

"I have to hear that little click in my head that makes me peaceful. It's just a mechanical thing, something like a switch clicking off in my head, turning the hot light off and the cool night on. Usually I hear it sooner than this, sometimes as early as noon, but today it's dilatory. I just haven't got the right level of alcohol in my bloodstream yet!" (Brick) ( )
  dandelionroots | Nov 3, 2016 |
“What is the smell in this room? Don’t you notice it, Brick? Don’t you notice a powerful and obnoxious odor of mendacity in this room?”

In a “Cat on a Hot Tin Roof”, Tennessee Williams shows us the darker side of a Southern family – lies, cover-ups, desires, frustrations, lovelessness, illness, greed, sex, childlessness, sibling rivalry, hints of homosexuality, alcoholism, and regret. One leads to another, and no one is happy or satisfied. It’s a rather miserable family who simply don’t like each other. This play spans only a few hours’ time where all these themes come to a head, and the cards are revealed. Yet, it doesn’t feel rushed. Bravo.

Originally staged in New York in 1955, this Pulitzer Prize winning play unveiled a new reality that was unprecedented in the era of “I Love Lucy”. (My book is the 1974 version where Act III was completely rewritten plus other heavy revisions.) This play was notably named for Margaret who finds herself in a loveless marriage, but not willing to leave it either. “I feel all the time like a cat on a hot tin roof.” Replies her uncaring husband, Brick, “Then jump off the roof…” and “Take a lover!” Yikes.

Some quotes:
The book has this preface from Dylan Thomas – there’s a lot of raging alright…:
“And you, my father, there on the sad height,
Curse, bless, me now with your fierce tears, I pray.
Do not go gentle into that good night.
Rage, rage against the dying of the light!”

On loneliness – so sad..:
“Living with someone you love can be lonelier – than living entirely alone! – if the one that y’ love doesn’t love you…”

A broken marriage – Geez, why do they bother to stay together…:
Brick: “I don’t have to do anything I don’t want to do. You keep forgetting the conditions on which I agreed to stay on living with you.”
Margaret [out before she knows it]: “I’m not living with you. We occupy the same cage.”

On life that has lost its luster:
“…My only point, the only point that I’m making, is life has got to be allowed to continue even after the dream of life is – all – over.”

On post war Europe:
“… That Europe is nothin’ on earth but a great big auction, that’s all it is, that bunch of old worn-out place, it’s just a big fire-sale, the whole fuckin’ thing…”

On death:
“—the human animal is a beast that dies and if he’s got money he buys and buys and buys and I think the reason he buys everything he can buy is that in the back of his mind he has the crazy hope that one of his purchases will be life everlasting! -- Which it never can be…”
“Ignorance – of mortality – is a comfort. A man don’t have that comfort, he’s the only living thing that conceives of death, that knows what it is…” ( )
  varwenea | Jul 22, 2015 |
  kutheatre | Jun 7, 2015 |
Showing 1-5 of 19 (next | show all)
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» Add other authors (18 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Williams, TennesseeAuthorprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Albee, EdwardIntroductionsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Huston, GertrudeCover designersecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Schunck, FerdinandHerausgebersecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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And you, my father, there on the sad height, / Curse, bless, me now with your fierce tears, I pray. / Do not go gentle into that good night. / Rage, rage against the dying of the light. -Dylan Thomas
First words
At the rise of the curtain someone is taking a shower in the bathroom, the door of which is half open.
Last words
(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
Disambiguation notice
This work refers to separate editions of the play. Please do not combine with omnibus editions which contain other plays also, nor with any other version that does not contain the full original text (e.g. abridged or simplified texts, movie adaptations, student guides or notes, etc.).
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0451171128, Mass Market Paperback)

The Pulitzer Prize-winning drama of seething passions that beset a Southern family in a shattering moment of revelation.

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:06:20 -0400)

(see all 6 descriptions)

"Edward Albee, one of America's greatest living playwrights (Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf?, The Zoo Story, Three Tall Women, The Play About the Baby) as well as a friend and colleague of Williams, has written an introduction from a playwright's perspective. This edition also includes a short chronology of the author's life and works; Williams' essay "Author and Director: A Delicate Situation"; as well as "Swinging a Cat," in which Williams scholar Brian Parker describes the various versions, rewrites, and changes Williams made to Cat over more than twenty years."--BOOK JACKET.… (more)

» see all 8 descriptions

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Penguin Australia

An edition of this book was published by Penguin Australia.

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