This book is an exploration of redefinitions. It considers the various ways in which Arthur Miller, Tennessee Williams, Eugene O’Neill and Maxwell Anderson approach the issue of dramatic heroism and the related literary problem of modern tragedy. During my research of critical approaches to modern dramatic tragedy I became interested in the fascination tragedy has held for numerous playwrights, and in the fervour with which a number of practitioners of modern drama have insisted on being considered part of an uninterrupted tradition of tragedy. In spite of working within an American liberal democratic setting, with its optimistic tendencies and its glorification of individualism, these dramatists wish to emulate a dramatic form reflecting a philosophy of life and a view of the world totally alien to their own and to those of their culture and possibly, as some have suggested, no longer relevant for the modern age.


Early Sixty Optimistic Tendency Contemporary Idea Historical Sense Dramatic Form 
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© Julie Adam 1991

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  • Julie Adam

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