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The Playwright as Thinker


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Table of Contents

Introduction by Richard Gilman
1. The Two Traditions of Modern Drama
2. Tragedy in Modern Dress
3. Tragedy in Fancy Dress
4. Wagner and Ibsen: A Contrast
5. Bernard Shaw
6. Varieties of Comic Experience
7. August Strindberg
8. From Strindberg to Jean-Paul Sartre
9. From Strindberg to Bertolt Brecht
10. Broadway-and the Alternative
Afterword (1987)

About the Author

Critic, scholar, translator, and playwright, Eric Bentley has been Brander Matthews Professor of Dramatic Literature at Columbia University and Norton Professor of Poetry at Harvard University. He served as drama critic of the New Republic and was inducted into the Theater Hall of Fame in 1997-98. His most widely read books are Thinking about the Playwright, Bentley on Brecht, and The Kleist Variations. Richard Gilman (1923-2006) was one of the leading drama and literary critics of the second half of the twentieth century. He was a professor at the Yale School of Drama for thirty-one years and the author of five books of criticism and a memoir.


"The Playwright as Thinker has proved itself to be a permanent critical work. I can think of no rival to the way Eric Bentley argues that the greatest dramatists are also original and challenging thinkers. Few works of interpretation hold on forever. This is one of them." -Harold Bloom, Yale University
"I was educated by Playwright." -Richard Gilman

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