Modern American Drama
Ten years ago I wrote a study of twentieth-century American drama. It quickly outgrew its proposed length, expanding from one brief volume to three extensive ones. Eight years later I was asked to write a , word section of the Cambridge History of American Theatre. I had reached , words before I realised I had inadvertently written another book. Discipline has never been my strong suit. I did then com- plete the original commission but what follows is that accidental study. It covers territory I have charted before and there are bound to be a few echoes, but it is surprising how a familiar country can change over time. The book is oﬀered as a series of reﬂections on American drama in the second half of the twentieth century. It does not aim to be comprehen- sive. What I hope it does is reﬂect my fascination with writers who
in staging their plays have also staged the anxieties, the tensions and the myths of a nation en route from a world war to the end of a millennium.