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Overview

Here are six plays that stand as landmarks of the modern drama:

Chekhov’s THREE SISTERS repeats, in terms of a handful of people, the spasms of a dying society.

Isben’s THE MASTER BUILDER is the tragedy of the modern romantic, caught between desire and reality.

Shaw’s MRS. WARREN’S PROFESSION shocked England and America; this play was the first honest attempt in our era to deal with prostitution. 

O’Casey’s RED ROSES FOR ME is about a Protestant worker of Dublin who is a symbol of the ravaging conflicts in Ireland—and in man.

Williams’s THE GLASS MENAGERIE is a tender, despairing portrait of two women, one lost in the past, the other in herself.

Miller’s ALL MY SONS is a biting though compassionate, indictment of success through moral betrayal.

We call these plays “modern.” But the they are high art, and are written with devotion to truth, and those two qualities have already made them timeless.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780440379843
Publisher: Random House Publishing Group
Publication date: 02/28/1956
Edition description: Reprint
Pages: 512
Sales rank: 418,739
Product dimensions: 4.20(w) x 6.90(h) x 0.90(d)

About the Author

Anton Pavlovich Chekhov (1860–1904) was a Russian playwright and short story writer who is considered to be among the greatest writers of short fiction in history. His career as a playwright produced four classics, and his best short stories are held in high esteem by writers and critics. Along with Henrik Ibsen and August Strindberg, Chekhov is often referred to as one of the three seminal figures in the birth of early modernism in the theater. Chekhov practiced as a medical doctor throughout most of his literary career: "Medicine is my lawful wife," he once said, "and literature is my mistress."Chekhov renounced the theatre after the disastrous reception of The Seagull in 1896, but the play was revived to acclaim in 1898 by Constantin Stanislavski's Moscow Art Theatre, which subsequently also produced Chekhov's Uncle Vanya and premiered his last two plays, Three Sisters and The Cherry Orchard. These four works present a challenge to the acting ensemble as well as to audiences, because in place of conventional action Chekhov offers a "theatre of mood" and a "submerged life in the text."Chekhov had at first written stories only for financial gain, but as his artistic ambition grew, he made formal innovations which have influenced the evolution of the modern short story. He made no apologies for the difficulties this posed to readers, insisting that the role of an artist was to ask questions, not to answer them. Anton Chekhov was the author of hundreds of short stories and several plays and is regarded by many as both the greatest Russian storyteller and the father of modern drama.

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