By David Krasner
This spouse offers an unique and authoritative survey of twentieth-century American drama stories, written through the very best students and critics within the box.
- Balances attention of canonical fabric with dialogue of works by means of formerly marginalized playwrights
- Includes experiences of prime dramatists, comparable to Tennessee Williams, Arthur Miller, Eugene O'Neill and Gertrude Stein
- Allows readers to make new hyperlinks among specific performs and playwrights
- Examines the events that framed the century, equivalent to the Harlem Renaissance, lesbian and homosexual drama, and the solo performances of the Nineteen Eighties and Nineties
- Situates American drama inside of greater discussions approximately American principles and culture
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Additional resources for A companion to twentieth-century American drama
But even as the play relies on traditional melodramatic devices, it is a commentary on the undermining of America’s Reconstruction (ca. 1865–76, which attempted to ‘‘reconstruct’’ the South by, among other things, incorporating newly freed slaves into the social fabric of American life). In the play, however, law, society, and Morrow himself are dominated by the will of industry and Southern racism, which cannot overcome attempts at racial reconciliation. Government in the post-Reconstruction South, Sheldon’s play observes, was subsumed by the darkest elements of modern society: the anti-democratic power of industry; the primitive backwardness of American regions not fully engaged in the urban, modern world; and the legacies of American chattel slavery, the root source of American market successes in the nineteenth century.
These immigrants differed from earlier generations because they formed part of a new working class that demanded entertainment. These ethnic groups created a theatrical genre of ‘‘types,’’ which became a central force inspiring generations of American plays. Unfortunately, these groups also provoked others to create mocking caricatures through ethnic stereotypes. The power of ethnic caricature – primarily the buffoon – was so great that it lasted for decades: whether the type was German, Irish, Jewish, or Chinese, the ethnic buffoon appeared in most varieties of ethnic theatres.
Westward expansion had characterized the age, but the rapid growth of rail lines beyond the Mississippi River after the Civil War opened up millions of acres of new land and, by the close of the nineteenth century, the end of the frontier was in sight. Popular American literature and entertainment reflected romantic associations with the disappearing ‘‘wild’’ American West. The ‘‘Wild West’’ shows of P. T. Barnum and ‘‘Buffalo Bill’’ Cody delighted audiences in the East and frontier melodramas surged in popularity in the Gilded Age with the plays of Bartley Campbell, Joaquin Miller, and Frank Murdoch and continued into the early twentieth century in such melodramas as Augustus Thomas’s Arizona (1899) and William C.