- Paperback: 320 pages
- Publisher: Penguin Classics; New edition edition (24 Feb. 2000)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0141182563
- ISBN-13: 978-0141182568
- Product Dimensions: 12.9 x 1.4 x 19.8 cm
- Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars See all reviews (13 customer reviews)
- Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 31,206 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
A Streetcar Named Desire and Other Plays: "Sweet Bird of Youth"; "A Streetcar Named Desire"; "The Glass Menagerie" (Penguin Modern Classics) Paperback – 24 Feb 2000
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More About the Author
Image reproduced Courtesy of New Directions Pubilshing.
About the Author
Tennessee Williams was born in 1911 in Columbus, Mississippi, where his grandfather was the episcopal clergyman. When his father, a travelling salesman, moved with his family to St Louis some years later, both he and his sister found it impossible to settle down to city life. He entered college during the Depression and left after a couple of years to take a clerical job in a shoe company. He stayed there for two years, spending the evenings writing. He entered the University of Iowa in 1938 and completed his course, at the same time holding a large number of part-time jobs of great diversity. He received a Rockefeller Fellowship in 1940 for his play Battle of Angels, and he won the Pulitzer Prize in 1948 and 1955. Among his many other plays Penguin have published The Glass Menagerie (1944), A Streetcar Named Desire (1947), Summer and Smoke (1948), The Rose Tattoo (1951), Camino Real (1953), Cat on a Hot Tin Roof (1955), Orpheus Descending (1957), Sweet Bird of Youth (1959), Period of Adjustment (1960), The Night of the Iguana (1961), The Milk Train Doesnt Stop Here Anymore (1963; revised 1964) and Small Craft Warnings (1972).
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Top Customer Reviews
The fact that there are four plays means that the reader can gain not only a knowledge of the individual plays, but also a feel for Williams' style of writing. This makes it an indispensible tool for anybody studying Tennessee Williams' work as part of their studies or indeed recreationally.
A good feature of the book is the way it introduces each play to the reader. By including detailed forewards and background information (including details of the authors personal life at the time of writing) the first reading of the play becomes much more rewarding.
The plays themselves are entertaining and insightful. In Each play Williams' tells a story of seemingly ordinary folk, and then introduces the reader/audience to whats going on in their minds. By the clever use of different stage techniques and sharp observations Tennessee Williams presents us with a collection of wonderfully enjoyable and atmostpheric plays. Very highly recommended.
The book is one that my daughter is studying and I'm hoping that she'll let me have a gander when she has finished with it.
Set in 1950s New Orleans, the highly pretentious Miss Blanche Dubois visits her sister and brother-in-law, Stella and Stanley Kowalski. Blanche, "virtuous", sensitive and 'moth-like' is a cultured antithesis of Stanley with his overt sensuality and primal behaviour, providing the audience with a wonderful drama of emotions.
Williams cleverly unravels Blanche's shocking history through Stanley, whose determined investigations reveal her past mistakes from her inability to receive closure from her young husband's death. The delightful use of explicit and precise stage directions results in a fantastic array of tension-building music, dramatic irony and intricately inter-woven symbolism.
The eleven scenes span over a long period of time, condensing the play into major dramatic events which intensify the emotions of both the characters and the audience. This is futher affirmed by the small set - the tiny apartment bespeaks confinement, accentuating the emotional density and the power and menace of Stanley's physical presence.
As the loss of literature, language, music and culture (everything that Blanche epitomises) is replaced with desire and lust, Blanche slowly 'fades' into her illusions; unable to cope with a changing world and ultimately losing her grip on sanity altogether.
Peter Shaffer wrote of Williams: "He could not write a dull scene." I could not agree more; 'A Streetcar Named Desire' is rightfully one of the best pieces of modern American literature as it will undoubtably be remembered, discussed and enjoyed for years to come.
Emma Stimson, A-level student.
In great condition, and delivered very quickly, and I would definitely buy from the seller again.
Good deal worth a buy.
One of the main characters, 'Stanley' is one of those men that women hate to love, yet feel instictively drawn to, he's strong, masculine and sexy, yet at the same time he is overly opinionated, violent and dominating.
Not the kind of man you 'should' be attracted to, yet so many women find themselves in the position that they are! Why is this? Williams explores the complexities of issues such as this. Loved it!
Most Recent Customer Reviews
This book was not at all as described. It was not in excellent condition and had notes written all over the pages inside the bookPublished on 18 Oct. 2013 by Reynolds
I love his plays! Fab book as you get more than one indulgence. Good to keep as definately a re-reader.Published on 27 Dec. 2012 by Rebecca Connolly
If you don't know the plays and are interested in drama and theatre and you read scripts - not everyone does - then Tennessee Williams is always worth reading but this review is... Read morePublished on 19 Nov. 2010 by Roger Clarke