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Broken Glass (Modern Plays) (Modern Classics) [Paperback]

Arthur Miller
3.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (9 customer reviews)
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Book Description

15 Aug 1994 Modern Classics
'Broken Glass is a brave, bighearted attempt by one of the pathfinders of postwar drama to look at the tangle of evasions and hostilities by which the soul contrives to hide its emptiness from itself.' John Lahr (The New Yorker) Brooklyn, 1938: Sylvia Gellburg is stricken by a mysterious paralysis in her legs for which the doctor can find no cause. He soon realizes that she is obsessed by the devastating news from Germany, where government thugs have begun smashing Jewish stores. But this experience is intermeshed with what he learns is her strange relationship with her husband Philip. When the two seemingly unrelated situations concatenate, a tragic flare of light opens on the age. 'His strongest play for many years, a gripping and at times powerfully affecting drama. As almost always in his work, it balances private lives with public morality...It is also an amazingly full-blooded piece, bursting with pain and passion.' (Charles Spencer Daily Telegraph)

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Product details

  • Paperback: 96 pages
  • Publisher: Methuen Drama; First Edition, First Printing edition (15 Aug 1994)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0413681904
  • ISBN-13: 978-0413681904
  • Product Dimensions: 12 x 18.7 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 3.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (9 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 11,082 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Arthur Miller (1915-2005) was born in New York City in 1915 and studied at the University of Michigan. During his lifetime he was celebrated as the pre-eminent playwright of his generation and won numerous awards for his work including two New York Drama Critics' Circle Awards, two Emmy awards and three Tony Awards for his plays, as well as a Tony Award for Lifetime Achievement. His 1949 play Death of a Salesman was the first play to scoop all three major US awards: the New York Critics Circle Award, a Tony Award for Best Author and the Pulitzer Prize for Drama. His many plays include All My Sons, Death of a Salesman, The Crucible, A View from the Bridge, A Memory of Two Mondays, After the Fall, Incident at Vichy, The Price, The Creation of the World and Other Business, and The American Clock; later plays include Broken Glass, Resurrection Blues and the aptly-titled Finishing the Picture. His other published work includes the novel Focus, The Misfits which was filmed in 1960, two collections of short stories, the memoir Timebends and various volumes of non-fiction including three books in collaboration with his wife, photographer Inge Morath.

Product Description


'What a fascinating play this is.' Fiona Mountford, Evening Standard, 11.10.2010 'A late masterpiece from Arthur Miller, written in 1994 when he was 79, it takes two mighty strands, anti-Semitism and sexual neurosis, and weaves them into a beguiling, unsettling whole.' Fiona Mountford, Evening Standard, 11.10.2010 'Once the issue of the Gellburgs' (lack of) sexual relations is thrown in, Miller craftily sets us wondering which one of Phillip or Sylvia is actually the more disturbed.' Fiona Mountford, Evening Standard, 11.10.2010 'The"broken glass" of the title of Arthur Miller's 1994 play refers in part to the shattered window panes of Kristallnacht in Nazi Germany. But the title has other resonances, too. Glass, once splintered, cannot be put back together. Running through the play is the question of whether something badly broken can ever be repaired: a marriage, an identity, a country. Miller ties the personal and the political together, as a Jewish couple living in 1930s New York react to the increasingly virulent anti-Semitism in Germany in different ways.' Sarah Hemming, Financial Times, 09.10.10 'Miller mixes the personal with the political with incredible skill. He places ideas about identity, assimilation, self-hate and self-acceptance into a story that grips like a thriller.' Dominic Maxwell, The Times, 08.10.10 'Can a distant atrocity affect a person so much they become paralysed? Arthur Miller's 1994 psycho-sexual drama ponders this question as Sylvia, a middle-aged Jewish woman in 1930s Brooklyn, is stricken with paralysis just as Hitler's brownshirts are rampaging in Germany.' Claire Allfree, Metro (London), 12.10.10 'Miller wrote this lugubrious, complex play in 1994, but he remembered the inter-war years, and the casual references to American anti-Semitism are more shocking than Sylvia's wasted life or Philip's curdled feelings for his people.' Nina Caplan, Time Out (London), 14.10.10 'Arthur Miller's only full-length play to deal with his own and every other Jew's Jewishness' John Nathan, Jewish Chronicle, 15.10.10 'It's a simple tale of marital grief. An American Jewish woman [...], hearing of the Kristallnacht atrocities, has become paralysed from the waist down. The quest for a cure takes her and husband, Philip Gellberg, to the deepest and darkest vaults of their stagnant marriage. Gellberg is one of Miller's great creations. An ambitious and capable financier, he has vaulted Wall Street's invisible barriers of prejudice and become second-in-command at a venerable old bank. But he remains pathetically grateful to the anti-Semites who employ him. He boasts, with genuine pride, that he's the first Jew to set foot on his boss's yacht. Yet he hates himself. He loathes his Semitic face and the suspicion it arouses among his colleagues.' Lloyd Evans, Spectator, 16.10.10 'its ambiguities are haunting' Jane Edwards, Sunday Times, 17.10.10 'The lesson the couple learns, though tragically too late, is to rise above incapacitating fear and guilt.' Kate Bassett, Independent on Sunday, 17.10.10

About the Author

Arthur Miller (1915-2005) was arguably the greatest American playwright of the twentieth century whose oeuvre includes novels, screenplays, essays and an autobiography. Six volumes of his plays and a volume of his theatre essays are published by Methuen Drama. Alan Ackerman is Associate Professor of English at the University of Toronto, editor of the journal Modern Drama and author of Against Theatre: Creative Destructions on the Modernist Stage. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
By berfin
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
The book was the oldest version, in the book which it did not state and I purchased god this item only because I saw a picture of the new version of the book while purchasing for the book
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5.0 out of 5 stars A very good play! 9 Nov 2013
By Emily
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
I read Death of a Salesman years ago and really loved it. This play, although not as masterful as his earlier play, really shows his scope as a playwrite as you see him explore the 'living room drama' type style adopted in plays such as 'Look Back in Anger' to make a social commentary on Jewish American living during the war. I thoroughly enjoyed it and would recommend it to anyone!
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5.0 out of 5 stars Just what I needed 25 May 2013
By Dee
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Needed this particular play for my English Lit exam! Better price here compared to other stores, also brand new. Great!
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5.0 out of 5 stars An Engaging play 24 May 2013
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
A late Miller play which addresses the issues of political responsibility and anti semitism. It builds a tense atmosphere andsustains it until the end.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Great product 22 Jan 2013
By Gilly
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Purchased this for my daughter received earlier than expected, she is in her bedroom now reading Broken Glass which she is studying as part of her A level English she seems v pleased with it. Room for her to make her own notes lets hope it does the trick!
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