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30 of 33 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An incisive testament on behalf of drama, 30 Nov 2000
By 
"schroederman" (Manchester United Kingdom) - See all my reviews
This offering from the blistering pen of David Mamet is a master document which brilliantly isolates and identifies both the need for, and the inner workings of, dramatic theatre. Actors, writers, directors, anyone in fact who carries a love of live drama (and most especially the Theatre) will find their work and/or understanding of such work deepened and enriched by this incisive unravelling of both why and how drama operates. Those who already hold an appreciation of Mamet's work will most certainly not be dissapointed. Writing in his trademark fashion of driving passion coupled with intellectual athleticism, the Pulitzer prizewinner presents clear, reasoned instruction for the aspiring dramatist - indeed, after reading this book one feels like a potential Chekhov! - and for the unconverted, resistant or uninformed he offers a passionate dialogue on the need of humankind for drama (and vice-versa), why it endures, and what purpose it serves. This is pure Mamet on fiery, driving, gutsy form. don't miss!
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Less Is More, 10 Dec 2009
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AD Macnabb "Tony Macnabb" (Norfolk, UK) - See all my reviews
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Short but magisterial overview of the structure and dynamics of drama and its relevance to the way human beings construct their view of the world. A must.
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5.0 out of 5 stars A short but complex look inside the head of one of the best dramatists of modern times, 30 Jun 2014
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This review is from: Three Uses of the Knife (Diaries, Letters and Essays): On the Nature and Purpose of Drama (Paperback)
An intriguing insight into Mamet's thinking. Raises some interesting points not only on the nature of drama but on the nature of life. Mamet has a great eye for observing random things and making connections that you never noticed were there. Or may not actually be there but are certainly entertaining.

It's a thin book but that's probably best. Mamet's writing is dense and often inaccessible in places, for the sake of the average brain don't spend more than ten minutes at a sitting with it or you'll either a. end up with a headful of mush or b. end up missing a lot. Mamet's complex yet spartan prose crams a lot in, a couple of pages go a long way.

This is the first thing of his I've read that wasn't a script. Absent is his usual snappy dialogue and hip talk, my only disappointment with it as, to me, that is David Mamet's signatures (and one of the pleasures of reading/watching his plays and films). In places it is hard to follow, many pages need 2 or 3 reads to appreciate his point but that same devious mind is still there.
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5.0 out of 5 stars The great man tells it like it is, 22 July 2014
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Lucinda Light (Boskoop, Netherlands) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Three Uses of the Knife (Diaries, Letters and Essays): On the Nature and Purpose of Drama (Paperback)
The great man tells it like it is: well, from his point of view. He banishes directors, gives actors the helm, harangues playwrights and sneers at every theatrical pretension: entertaining paid bums on seats is what it's about. Always refreshing.
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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Interesting, 6 Mar 2013
By 
Mr. Sam McCallum (UK) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Three Uses of the Knife (Diaries, Letters and Essays): On the Nature and Purpose of Drama (Paperback)
Mamet is undoubtedly one of the most interesting theorists to read in my opinion and this book is no exception, my only problem is that he has a habit, in these essays, of using very sophisticated language but if you do not mind reading with a dictionary it is great!
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7 of 22 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Informative & Entertaining, 12 Jun 1999
By A Customer
In a short, easy-to-read book, Mamet reveals, as the title suggests, "the nature and purpose of drama."
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Three Uses of the Knife (Diaries, Letters and Essays): On the Nature and Purpose of Drama
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