Modern American Drama: Playwriting in the 1940s
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The Decades of Modern American Drama series provides a comprehensive survey and study of the theatre produced in each decade from the 1930s to 2009 in eight volumes. Each volume equips readers with a detailed understanding of the context from which work emerged: an introduction considers life in the decade with a focus on domestic life and conditions, social changes, culture, media, technology, industry and political events; while a chapter on the theatre of the decade offers a wide-ranging and thorough survey of theatres, companies, dramatists, new movements and developments in response to the economic and political conditions of the day. The work of the four most prominent playwrights from the decade receives in-depth analysis and re-evaluation by a team of experts, together with commentary on their subsequent work and legacy. A final section brings together original documents such as interviews with the playwrights and with directors, drafts of play scenes, and other previously unpublished material.

The major playwrights and their works to receive in-depth coverage in this volume include:
* Eugene O’Neill: The Iceman Cometh (1946), A Moon for the Misbegotten (1947), Long Day’s Journey Into Night (written 1941, produced 1956), and A Touch of the Poet (written 1942, produced 1958);
* Tennessee Williams: The Glass Menagerie (1944), A Streetcar Named Desire (1947), Summer and Smoke (1948);
* Arthur Miller: All My Sons (1947), Death of a Salesman (1949), and The Crucible (1953);
* Thornton Wilder: Our Town (1938), The Skin of Our Teeth (1942), Shadow of a Doubt (1943), and The Alcestiad (written 1940s).