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Michael S. D. Hooper reverses the recent trend of regarding Tennessee Williams as fundamentally a social writer following the discovery, publication and/or performance of plays from both ends of his career – the 'proletarian' apprentice years of Candles to the Sun and Not About Nightingales and the once overlooked final period of, amongst many other plays, The Red Devil Battery Sign. Hooper contends that recent criticism has exaggerated the political engagement and egalitarian credentials of a writer whose characters and situations revert to a reactionary politics of the individual dominated by the negotiation of sexual power. Directly, or more often indirectly, Williams' writing expresses social disaffection before glamorizing the outcast and shelving thoughts of political change. Through detailed analysis of canonical texts the book sheds new light on Williams' work, as well as on the cultural and social life of mid-twentieth-century America.Read more
- Collects together and evaluates interpretations of Tennessee Williams as a political writer
- Includes sustained analysis of specific texts, some of which have only recently been published
- The writing is not confined to one theoretical viewpoint and is not weighed down with complicated theoretical points
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"This book forced this reviewer to rethink his vision of Tennessee Williams: Hooper gives scholars much to ponder about desire, sexuality, and political agency in Williams's plays.
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- Date Published: May 2012
- format: Hardback
- isbn: 9781107015364
- length: 260 pages
- dimensions: 234 x 160 x 17 mm
- weight: 0.54kg
- contains: 5 b/w illus.
- availability: In stock
Table of Contents
1. Geiger-counters of rebellion
2. There will be pity for the wild
3. Desiring others
4. Emotional roots
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