James Purdy: Selected Plays

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Ivan R. Dee, Jun 16, 2009 - Drama - 304 pages
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Hailed as a creative genius (TLS) and a singular American visionary (New York Times), James Purdy may be best known for his remarkable novels, but he is also an astonishing playwright who has written nine full-length and twenty short plays. Purdy is one of the few contemporary American writers capable of writing tragedy-Tennessee Williams called him a uniquely gifted man of the theater. This collection presents four riveting and beautifully crafted works: Brice, The Paradise Circus, Where Quentin Goes, and Ruthanna Elder. Each explores a range of emotional and familial tangles, as fathers betray their sons and squander their inheritances, siblings compete for parental affection, and husbands and wives try to salvage meaning from their broken marriages. The plays are written in Purdy's authentic idiom, which Paul Bowles called the closest [we have] to a classical American colloquial.
 

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Contents

The Paradise Circus 1991
85
Where Quentin Goes 2001
151
Ruthanna Elder 1989
235
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About the author (2009)

James Purdy (1914?2009) published more than fifty works of fiction, poetry, and plays, including Malcolm, The Nephew, Eustace Chisholm and the Works, Jeremy's Version, The House of the Solitary Maggot, Gertrude of Stony Island Avenue, and Moe's Villa and Other Stories. He has been translated into over thirty languages. Mr. Purdy received numerous awards for his work, including the Morten Dauwen Zabel Fiction award from the Academy of Arts and Letters and the Fadiman Award from the Mercantile Library.

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