Top 10 Best Books to Read in Drama Literary Criticism - August 2021



Here are our top ten recommendations if you are looking for the best books to read in Drama Literary Criticism. We have made sure our list is diverse to cater to the interests of different types of readers.

1. Twelve Angry Men (Penguin Classics)


Top 10 Best Books to Read in Drama Literary Criticism - August 2021

A landmark American drama that inspired a classic film and a Broadway revival—featuring an introduction by David Mamet A blistering character study and an examination of the American melting pot and the judicial system that keeps it in check,  Twelve Angry Men  holds at its core a deeply patriotic faith in the U.S. legal system. The play centers on Juror Eight, who is at first the sole holdout in an 11-1 guilty vote. Eight sets his sights not on proving the other jurors wrong but rather on getting them to look at the situation in a clear-eyed way not affected by their personal prejudices or biases. Reginald Rose deliberately and carefully peels away the layers of artifice from the men and allows a fuller picture to form of them—and of America, at its best and worst.   After the critically acclaimed teleplay aired in 1954, this landmark American drama went on to become a cinematic masterpiece in 1957 starring Henry Fonda, for which Rose wrote the adaptation. More recently, Twelve Angry Men had a successful, and award-winning, run on Broadway. For more than seventy years, Penguin has been the leading publisher of classic literature in the English-speaking world. With more than 1,700 titles, Penguin Classics represents a global bookshelf of the best works throughout history and across genres and disciplines. Readers trust the series to provide authoritative texts enhanced by introductions and notes by distinguished scholars and contemporary authors, as well as up-to-date translations by award-winning translators.

  • Author: Reginald Rose
  • Publisher: Penguin Classics; 1st edition (August 29, 2006)
  • Genre: Literature & Fiction, History & Criticism

                 

2. A Streetcar Named Desire (New Directions Paperbook)


Top 10 Best Books to Read in Drama Literary Criticism - August 2021

The Pulitzer Prize and Drama Critics Circle Award winning play―reissued with an introduction by Arthur Miller ( Death of a Salesman and The Crucible ), and Williams' essay "The World I Live In." It is a very short list of 20th-century American plays that continue to have the same power and impact as when they first appeared―57 years after its Broadway premiere, Tennessee Williams' A Streetcar Named Desire is one of those plays. The story famously recounts how the faded and promiscuous Blanche DuBois is pushed over the edge by her sexy and brutal brother-in-law, Stanley Kowalski. Streetcar launched the careers of Marlon Brando, Jessica Tandy, Kim Hunter and Karl Malden, and solidified the position of Tennessee Williams as one of the most important young playwrights of his generation, as well as that of Elia Kazan as the greatest American stage director of the '40s and '50s. Who better than America's elder statesman of the theater, Williams' contemporary Arthur Miller, to write as a witness to the lightning that struck American culture in the form of A Streetcar Named Desire ? Miller's rich perspective on Williams' singular style of poetic dialogue, sensitive characters, and dramatic violence makes this a unique and valuable new edition of A Streetcar Named Desire . This definitive new edition will also include Williams' essay "The World I Live In," and a brief chronology of the author's life.

  • Author: Tennessee Williams
  • Publisher: New Directions; unknown edition (September 1, 2004)
  • Genre: Literature & Fiction, History & Criticism
  • ISBN: 978-0811216029
  • Dimensions: 5.2 x 0.7 x 8 inches

                 

3. The Tempest (Folger Shakespeare Library)


Top 10 Best Books to Read in Drama Literary Criticism - August 2021

The authoritative edition of The Tempest from The Folger Shakespeare Library, the trusted and widely used Shakespeare series for both students and general readers. Putting romance onstage, The Tempest gives us a magician, Prospero, a former duke of Milan who was displaced by his treacherous brother, Antonio. Prospero is exiled on an island, where his only companions are his daughter, Miranda, the spirit Ariel, and the monster Caliban. When his enemies are among those caught in a storm near the island, Prospero turns his power upon them through Ariel and other spirits. The characters exceed the roles of villains and heroes. Prospero seems heroic, yet he enslaves Caliban and has an appetite for revenge. Caliban seems to be a monster for attacking Miranda, but appears heroic in resisting Prospero, evoking the period of colonialism during which the play was written. Miranda’s engagement to Ferdinand, the Prince of Naples and a member of the shipwrecked party, helps resolve the drama. This edition includes: -Freshly edited text based on the best early printed version of the play -Full explanatory notes conveniently placed on pages facing the text of the play -Scene-by-scene plot summaries -A key to the play’s famous lines and phrases -An introduction to reading Shakespeare’s language -An essay by a leading Shakespeare scholar providing a modern perspective on the play -Fresh images from the Folger Shakespeare Library’s vast holdings of rare books -An annotated guide to further reading Essay by Barbara A. Mowat The Folger Shakespeare Library in Washington, DC, is home to the world’s largest collection of Shakespeare’s printed works, and a magnet for Shakespeare scholars from around the globe. In addition to exhibitions open to the public throughout the year, the Folger offers a full calendar of performances and programs. For more information, visit Folger.edu.

  • Author: William Shakespeare
  • Publisher: Simon & Schuster; 1st edition (July 1, 2004)
  • Genre: Literature & Fiction, History & Criticism
  • ISBN: 978-0743482837
  • Dimensions: 4.19 x 1.01 x 6.75 inches

                 

4. Animal Farm


Top 10 Best Books to Read in Drama Literary Criticism - August 2021

Animal Farm is an Allegorical novella by George Orwell, first Published in England on 17 August 1945. According to Orwell, the Fable reflects events leading up to the Russian Revolution of 1917 and Then on into the Statilinst era of the Soviet Union.

  • Author: George orwell
  • Publisher: Mario Brito Publishing (July 10, 2021)
  • Genre: Literature & Fiction, History & Criticism

                 

5. The Crucible


Top 10 Best Books to Read in Drama Literary Criticism - August 2021

In the rigid theocracy of Salem, Massachusetts, rumors that women are practicing witchcraft galvanize the town. In the ruthlessness of the prosecutors and the eagerness of neighbor to testify against neighbor, The Crucible mirrors the anti-Communist hysteria in the 1950s.

  • Author: Stacy Keach
  • Genre: Literature & Fiction, History & Criticism, Genres & Styles, Drama

                 



6. Othello


Top 10 Best Books to Read in Drama Literary Criticism - August 2021

The authoritative edition of Othello from The Folger Shakespeare Library, the trusted and widely used Shakespeare series for students and general readers. In Othello , Shakespeare creates powerful drama from a marriage between the exotic Moor Othello and the Venetian lady Desdemona that begins with elopement and mutual devotion and ends with jealous rage and death. Shakespeare builds many differences into his hero and heroine, including race, age, and cultural background. Yet most readers and audiences believe the couple’s strong love would overcome these differences were it not for Iago, who sets out to destroy Othello. Iago’s false insinuations about Desdemona’s infidelity draw Othello into his schemes, and Desdemona is subjected to Othello’s horrifying verbal and physical assaults. This edition includes: -Freshly edited text based on the best early printed version of the play -Full explanatory notes conveniently placed on pages facing the text of the play -Scene-by-scene plot summaries -A key to the play’s famous lines and phrases -An introduction to reading Shakespeare’s language -An essay by a leading Shakespeare scholar providing a modern perspective on the play -Fresh images from the Folger Shakespeare Library’s vast holdings of rare books -An annotated guide to further reading Essay by Susan Snyder The Folger Shakespeare Library in Washington, DC, is home to the world’s largest collection of Shakespeare’s printed works, and a magnet for Shakespeare scholars from around the globe. In addition to exhibitions open to the public throughout the year, the Folger offers a full calendar of performances and programs. For more information, visit Folger.edu.

  • Author: William Shakespeare
  • Publisher: Simon & Schuster; 1st edition (July 1, 1993)
  • Genre: Literature & Fiction, Dramas & Plays
  • ISBN: 978-0743477550
  • Dimensions: 4.19 x 0.9 x 6.75 inches

                 

7. Romeo and Juliet: Oxford School Shakespeare (Oxford School Shakespeare Series)


Top 10 Best Books to Read in Drama Literary Criticism - August 2021

This edition of Romeo and Juliet is especially designed for students, with accessible on-page notes and explanatory illustrations, clear background information, and rigorous but accessible scholarly credentials. This edition includes illustrations, preliminary notes, reading lists (including websites) and classroom notes, allowing students to master Shakespeare's work. About the Series: Newly redesigned and easier to read, each play in the Oxford School Shakespeare series includes the complete and unabridged text, detailed and clear explanations of difficult words and passages, a synopsis of the plot, summaries of individual scenes, and notes on the main characters. Also included is a wide range of questions and activities for work in class, together with the historical background to Shakespeare's England, a brief biography of Shakespeare, and a complete list of his plays.

  • Author: William Shakespeare
  • Publisher: Oxford University Press; Illustrated edition (November 13, 2008)
  • Genre: Literature & Fiction, History & Criticism
  • ISBN: 978-0198321668
  • Dimensions: 8.3 x 0.4 x 6.6 inches

                 

8. Rosencrantz and Guildenstern Are Dead


Top 10 Best Books to Read in Drama Literary Criticism - August 2021

Rosencrantz and Guildenstern Are Dead is one of the most enduring and frequently performed plays of contemporary theater and has firmly established itself in the dramatic canon. Acclaimed as a modern masterpiece, it is the fabulously inventive tale of Hamlet as told from the worm’s-eye view of the bewildered Rosencrantz and Guildenstern, two minor characters in Shakespeare’s play. In Tom Stoppard’s best-known work, this Shakespearean Laurel and Hardy finally get a chance to take the lead role, but do so in a world where echoes of Waiting for Godot resound, where reality and illusion intermix, and where fate leads our two heroes to a tragic but inevitable end. Revised and reissued to commemorate the fiftieth anniversary of the play’s first performance, this definitive edition includes a new introduction and previously unpublished ancillary material.

  • Author: Tom Stoppard
  • Publisher: Grove Press; 50th Anniversary edition (April 11, 2017)
  • Genre: Arts & Photography, Performing Arts
  • ISBN: 978-0802126214
  • Dimensions: 5.4 x 0.4 x 8.1 inches

                 

9. The Piano Lesson


Top 10 Best Books to Read in Drama Literary Criticism - August 2021

Winner of the Pulitzer Prize for Drama and winner of the New York Drama Critics Circle Award for Best Play, this modern American classic is about family, and the legacy of slavery in America.  August Wilson has already given the American theater such spell-binding plays about the black experience in 20th-century America as Ma Rainey's Black Bottom, Joe Turner's Come and Gone, and the Pulitzer Prize-winning  Fences . In his second Pulitzer Prize-winner, The Piano Lesson, Wilson has fashioned perhaps his most haunting and dramatic work.  At the heart of the play stands the ornately carved upright piano which, as the Charles family's prized, hard-won possession, has been gathering dust in the parlor of Berniece Charles's Pittsburgh home. When Boy Willie, Berniece's exuberant brother, bursts into her life with his dream of buying the same Mississippi land that his family had worked as slaves, he plans to sell their antique piano for the hard cash he needs to stake his future. But Berniece refuses to sell, clinging to the piano as a reminder of the history that is their family legacy. This dilemma is the real "piano lesson," reminding us that blacks are often deprived both of the symbols of their past and of opportunity in the present.

  • Author: August Wilson
  • Publisher: Plume; Reprint edition (December 1, 1990)
  • Genre: Politics & Social Sciences, Social Sciences
  • ISBN: 978-0452265349
  • Dimensions: 5.3 x 0.4 x 8 inches

                 

10. Lysistrata and Other Plays (Penguin Classics)


Top 10 Best Books to Read in Drama Literary Criticism - August 2021

Three plays by the comedian of Ancient Greece Writing at the time of political and social crisis in Athens, Aristophanes was an eloquent yet bawdy challenger to the demagogue and the sophist. The Achanians is a plea for peace set against the background of the long war with Sparta. In Lysistrata a band of women tap into the awesome power of sex in order to end a war. The darker comedy of The Clouds satirizes Athenian philosophers, Socrates in particular, and reflects the uncertainties of a generation in which all traditional religious and ethical beliefs were being challenged.  For more than seventy years, Penguin has been the leading publisher of classic literature in the English-speaking world. With more than 1,700 titles, Penguin Classics represents a global bookshelf of the best works throughout history and across genres and disciplines. Readers trust the series to provide authoritative texts enhanced by introductions and notes by distinguished scholars and contemporary authors, as well as up-to-date translations by award-winning translators.

  • Author: Aristophanes
  • Publisher: Addison Wesley; 1st edition (September 27, 2008)
  • Genre: Literature & Fiction, History & Criticism
  • ISBN: 978-0140448146
  • Dimensions: 0.75 x 5.25 x 7.5 inches