Considering Alan Ball: Essays on Sexuality, Death and America in the Television and Film Writings

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Thomas Fahy
McFarland, Mar 29, 2006 - Performing Arts - 190 pages
Academy Award-winning screenwriter of the film American Beauty and creator of the HBO series Six Feet Under, Alan Ball has consistently probed the cultural forces shaping gender, sexuality, and death in the United States. Through gritty dialogue and edgy humor, Ball centers much of his social critique on the illusory promises of the American Dream. For many of his characters, a belief in the American Dream—including idealized notions of the family, heterosexual norms, and the acceptance of prescribed gender roles—proves stifling and self-destructive. This is the first book to explore Ball’s writings for theater, television and film, with an emphasis on his best-known work. These essays offer insight into both the captivating and problematic dimensions of Ball’s work, while drawing connections among his diverse writings. An interview with Ball is included.
 

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Contents

An Introduction Thomas Fahy
1
An Interview with Alan Ball Thomas Fahy
17
Alan Balls American Beauty Ann C Hall
23
The Psychology of Houses in American Beauty Susanna Lee
33
The Dangerous Aesthetics of American Beauty Susan Cokal
45
AntiAesthetic Art in Alan Balls Vision Kirstin Ringelberg
70
The Therapeutic Drama of Six Feet Under Robert F Goss
86
The Queer Intimacies of Six Feet Under Lorena Russell
107
When We Living Awaken Craig N Owens
124
Visibility and the Veiling of Conservatism Johanna Frank
139
The American Dream in Five Women Wearing the Same Dress Mardia Bishop
157
Works for Theater Film and Television
173
About the Contributors
179
Index
181
Copyright

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About the author (2006)

Thomas Fahy, also the author of several books and editor of Considering David Chase: Essays on The Rockford Files, Northern Exposure and The Sopranos (2007) and Considering Aaron Sorkin: Essays on the Politics, Poetics and Sleight of Hand in the Films and Television Series (2005) is an assistant professor of English and director of American Studies at Long Island University.

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